Buy online, pickup in-store or BOPIS is one of the upcoming trends in the eCommerce industry. It is a fulfillment strategy that offers the customers an omnichannel shopping experience, meaning it brings together the best of the both worlds – offline and online shopping. While eCommerce has become the very backbone of product purchasing, the BOPIS retail model gives it a surprising twist.
When customers find it difficult to decide between online and physical shopping, then buy online, pickup in-store process comes to the rescue. As the name suggests, customers can shop for a product using an eCommerce website or a mobile app and pick it up from the physical store at their convenience.
Some of the major eCommerce platforms that offer the ease of BOPIS implementation are Salesforce Commerce Cloud storefront, Shopify Plus, Adobe Commerce, commercetools, and BigCommerce platform. These platforms enable uncomplicated adoption of BOPIS for any existing and new eCommerce business.
This amalgamation of online and offline shopping in BOPIS strategy has undeniably blurred the line between the two different purchasing models. Retailers are always looking to please their customers by offering them the best products, services, discounts, and shopping experiences. And, BOPIS has made this task easy for them, as they can now offer the advantages of online and offline shopping at the same time to their customers.
What is BOPIS Retail?
BOPIS retail is quite a simple idea that allows the customers to buy a product via a digital shopping channel and collect the ordered products from their nearest retail store outlet and even pay for it physically. This shopping model defies the traditional eCommerce model, wherein the customers had to place the order through a digital platform and wait for the deliveries to arrive at their homes. BOPIS retail strategy has slowly gained momentum in the past couple of years, as it allows customers to browse for products at their comfort and pay for it in-store only if they like it. As for retailers, this model increases the footfall, which translates to more product and better sales.
However, when adopting BOPIS in retail, merchants must maintain inventories in real-time. They have to ensure that the products for which they have received orders online are available in the physical store at the same price and discount rates (if any).Retailers should also facilitate customers with dedicated checkout counters for collecting their orders. While placing orders ‘online’ is the primary objective of a BOPIS retail model, it should also enable the customers to make on-the-fly purchases when they reach the physical retail outlet for picking up their orders.
Why does a BOPIS strategy make sense in today’s ecommerce ecosystem?
BOPIS fits perfectly in today’s retail environment because of the flexibility it offers to customers. When a customer selects BOPIS, they don’t have to pay for the product until they’ve tried it out in-store. Then for retailers, it offers an opportunity to get customers to visit their physical stores, browse through the additional product catalogue and purchase more products than a customer intended to.
According to a survey conducted by Adobe, out of 1000 customers, 30% of the online shoppers would prefer the BOPIS commerce over the traditional home delivery system. In yet another survey, stats suggest that 40% of retailers have started offering BOPIS services. These numbers affirm that BOPIS retail is one of the important trends in today’s eCommerce economy.
What does a BOPIS strategy consist of?
For BOPIS retail to work smoothly, retailers should have a digital channel in collaboration with a functional physical retail store. If a retailer already has an online store, then she needs to provide an additional checkout option – pickup in-store. And, the physical store needs to create dedicated checkout counters or allow curbside pickup in order to provide a seamless shopping experience to their customers.