Making the most of the marketplace model in store
Already accounting for more than half the world’s online shopping, marketplace shopping is in dramatic growth and for big box retailers there’s opportunity to take advantage and drive footfall to store.
The boom in marketplace means big box retailers are either trying to get in on the act with their own models or onboarding with operators to attract a new customer base. Alongside a stronger e-commerce offer, there is another way to benefit from retail marketplace trends and gain footfall – click + collect.
By establishing a partner route with marketplace companies to bring click + collect services to store, or even by onboarding and providing click + collect as part of that offer, retailers can reach new consumers and gain footfall. It becomes an arrangement of convenience that works to the benefit of both the marketplace retail partner and the store.
However, with Clix these challenges can also be solved. This completely automated system can be placed at the preference of the retailer and requires no interaction for collection. Clix uses a proprietary mobile-first, web app that gives the consumer instant and secure access to the locker. To the consumer it’s speed and convenience, and to the retailer it means eliminating manned collection points, no queuing at tills and placement that works best for the store layout. This could be close to stock holding areas or a position that encourages footfall through the store.
With every interaction, the technology is also gathering data and insight that can be used to improve services. And as the marketplace click and collect model develops, Clix has the potential to adapt. Reverse loading locker walls, automated loading, external mobile lockers, out of hours and other solutions can all be made possible using Clix’s smart locker technology.
With the relationship between marketplace and big box retail in its early stages, the technology-first adaptability of Clix could be instrumental in ensuring that click and collect delivers on the opportunities it promises.
As growth continues and customer expectations of service rise, marketplaces are having to find new ways to provide customers with convenience and there’s a strong argument for click + collect as part of this. It gives the customer the opportunity to collect at a time and place that’s convenient for them, rather than having to wait for deliveries to arrive.
The challenge in facilitating this for marketplace operators is real estate and big box has this in abundance, and in prime locations. It makes a lot of sense for operators to explore this as an option but there’s also benefit for the retailer too. By having marketplace click + collect in store, the clearest advantage comes in heightened footfall from new consumers and the halo effect that comes with that.
That is not to say there aren’t challenges. Competing goods is one, but models such as those from eBay, where retailers can control the offer through branded fronts, are the solution. Perhaps the bigger issue is one of operation. Most locker systems require staff interaction at the point of collection. Whether this involves staff committed to the collection area or the customer queuing at the till to gain access, the result is the same – poor efficiency. To some degree this is countered by placing lockers close to points of purchase, but this is often at the compromise of valuable front of store space.