Owners are moving quickly to provide contactless service by adding curbside pickup with new websites and mobile apps that make it easier to order. Restaurants and stores are dealing with the necessity to offer more options for scheduling curbside as many people are trying to avoid going indoors and shopping or dining out. While most people think of restaurants or groceries for pickup, these are not the only stores offering the service. What is the right choice for you and your business? Curbside Pickup is not new and many chains such as Walmart, all have curbside pickup options on their mobile apps. Items can be purchased on the app and ready for pickup at the store nearby.
"Consumer behavior may change forever. Buyers will expect more options in how they shop. Even when cities reopen, consumer sentiment and behavior will vary, with many still preferring curbside pickup and delivery. Businesses must continue catering to these expectations. As they do, they may find their business not only recovers but grows." - David Rusenko, Square’s head of eCommerce.
“Times have been tough for small businesses lately, but Main Street is nothing if not resilient. In the wake of shelter-in-place orders, eCommerce is more important than ever.”SQUARE Rise of ECommerce Report
How does it work?
- A customer gets the mobile app or goes online to start an order
- They checkout and complete the curbside pickup time selection
- They pay for the order and a notification goes to the merchant
- At the time of pickup the customer is notified that their order is ready
- They checkin by tapping the I’m on the way” button to notify the store
- They arrive at the store and the order is placed in their car
You will create new ways for keeping inventory in sync and tracking orders online and in the shop. As you digitize operations, consider how to keep the experience consistent by using tools like member or loyalty points for purchases made in-store as well as online. Ensure your system is automated and sending reminder emails for items left in the cart for example. Here are 5 tips for creating the best experience for your customers with a curbside pickup option via eCommerce:
- Make it easy to buy from you. Keep the online experience easy to understand. Make products searchable. People want to search and quickly scan, filter and find what they want to buy.
- Customized orders. Allow people to get what they want with an app that provides custom settings, such as lists and checkboxes to build their order.
- Have a specific location for pickup. Having the same spot where a customer arrives will help your staff make the handoff as efficient as possible.
- Make it obvious. Customers want to know what they should do to get their order. Make sure you make it easy to understand, for example, do they park in certain areas do they text you when they arrive? or do they call?
- The order is ready. Set the pickup expectations and make sure to deliver on time service.
- Promote your curbside program. Get the word out and include it in every interaction including your receipt, your newsletter and online website include checkout pages.
Tiny Screen Labs builds apps and websites that link inventory systems and POS systems together. Checkout a couple of our clients who are leading the way in their communities to help people stay safe with curbside pickup:
Deville Pizza + Provisions in Libertyville, IL, a restaurant that now sells groceries such as Prime steaks, boutique wine by the case and specialty bakery from the best local suppliers in Chicago.
Truly’s in Wellesley, MA, a popular ice cream, soft serve, frozen yogurt and cakes shop. They launched online order and curbside pickup for all products. They did this by building an outdoor serving area complete with it’s own refrigeration unit.