| Feb 3, 2021

Click & Collect 101: What Is It and How Does It Work?

Thanks to its convenience, online shopping continues to see gains among consumers, with 90% of households having purchased items online since March 2020. Click and Collect is one of the leading online options driving FMCG growth— particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic— making it an important service for brands and retailers to understand.

What is Click and Collect? 

Click and Collect — commonly referred to as “curbside pickup” or “buy online pick up in store”— refers to any shopping trip where products are purchased online and picked up by the consumer at a designated location, either in store or curbside outside the store. 

How does Click and Collect work?

To use a retailer’s Click and Collect service, shoppers simply place their order online through the store’s website or mobile app. Store employees then gather and prepare the products for pickup and notify the consumer when the order is ready. All consumers have to do is stop by the retailer’s specified pick-up location, show proof of their order confirmation, and collect their items. 

What’s the difference between Click and Collect, BOPIS and curbside pickup? 

With Click and Collect, consumers can choose between two pick-up methods. They can buy online and pickup in store (BOPIS) or take advantage of curbside pickup. For in-store pickup, shoppers check in at the collection location within the store and carry out their items. 

Though essentially the same as the buy online pickup in-store method, curbside pickup allows consumers to bypass going into the store entirely. Shoppers notify the store when they’ve arrived at the pick-up location and their items are brought out to them. Curbside pickup trends show this option has been especially popular with older and at-risk shoppers during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Who is using Click and Collect?

Though the service has been available for some time, Click and Collect has experienced enormous growth since the onset of the pandemic as consumers sought out ways to stay safe and avoid crowds. Between March and June, roughly one in three click and collect shoppers were using the service for the first time ever or for the first time in six-plus months. 

The newest users are shoppers who have historically preferred shopping in physical stores. They’re quality and values-driven consumers who know the brands, products, and retailers they like to use. Click and Collect gives these consumers more control over their shopping experience. Rather than having to rely on delivery services, consumers can easily buy online and pick up their items in-store or curbside at their convenience. 

How do brands and retailers benefit from Click and Collect? 

Many retailers— from local grocers to national chains like Walmart, Target and Best Buy— are now offering Click and Collect, which has been a smart business decision during the current COVID crisis. This is because Click and Collect baskets are twice the size of other order methods. Plus, the convenience of this service is a key factor in Click and Collect user satisfaction and in retailer customer retention. 

How has Click and Collect impacted retailers’ promotional strategies?

With more consumers adopting omnichannel shopping practices like click and collect, it has become increasingly important for retailers to align their in-store and digital promotional strategies. Historically, certain in-store promotions like temporary price reductions (TPRs) were separate from retailers’ online promotions, meaning online shoppers may have seen different prices than what they'd experience in-store. Now, retailers are taking a more holistic approach, aligning these promotions in-store and online so consumers will see the same price reductions regardless of how they shop. This omnichannel approach to promotions results in a better experience for today's omnichannel shopper.

The future of Click and Collect

Click and Collect trends show that online shopping is here to stay. A Numerator survey of verified first-time Click and Collect shoppers during COVID-19 shows that two-thirds of new users plan to continue using Click and Collect post-COVID. This means it’s more important than ever for brands and retailers to optimize their Click and Collect strategies in order to keep consumers coming back. 
Learn more about how Click and Collect can boost your brand or category by reaching out to us with any questions.