The influence of mobile technology on retail in this century has been truly astounding. By 2003, 95 million people around the globe made a payment via their mobile device. By 2015, there were 500 million users making 50 billion transactions for a total volume of 610 billion USD. With mobile wallet growth on the rise, could it be the next subset of mobile commerce to reap the benefits of a mobile hungry populace? Over the last five years, m-commerce has enjoyed a 30% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) that is showing little sign of slowing down. If brick and mortar retail is still king, what will it take to bring mobile wallet adoption out of the hands of early adopters and into the hearts and minds of shoppers worldwide?
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The onset of 2015 marked a huge change in shipping costs, and as a result retailers are struggling to find ways to maintain their bottom lines. As of Jan. 1, packages are now being evaluated by their “dimensional weight,” or volume, instead of determining price by weight alone. Experts say that the when combined with other annual rate hikes and surcharges, the resulting average rate increases will be as high as 30% or more.
Unfortunately, retailers are being forced to make sacrifices in the name of customer service in order to soften the blow. Some are raising free-shipping minimums, some are raising prices, and others are cutting free shipping altogether. But for the 68% of retailers already offering free delivery, cutting free shipping would take a serious toll on customer satisfaction.
So what exactly is this main goal? According to Aamoth, its getting the customer to fulfill an online order efficiently, while bringing them to a physical location where they can shop for additional items and drive incremental sales in both channels. Ace Hardware, for example, claims to have seen an average lift of 18% to 20% in e-commerce sales since installing in-store pickup.
The advantages of buying online and picking up in-store don’t end with the money saved on shipping costs. Directing customers into the store to complete their transaction results in major net gains for retailers, as two out of every three consumers shop for additional items when picking up a product in store, according to a recent POPcodes survey. The opportunity to upsell is unique to the in-store experience, and when consumers have the option to test and try, they are much more likely to make incremental purchases.
As omnichannel becomes more of a business imperative, retailers are striving to provide the best experience possible, particularly during the order fulfillment and delivery process.
Whether through ship-from-store or in-store pickup, merchants are enabling consumers to have more of a say in when and how they receive their orders. These are not the only methods retailers are implementing, as some merchants are adding same-day delivery services and even free shipping to the mix.
Regardless of the delivery method retailers want to execute, they must first streamline and optimize their supply chain operations.
A true omnichannel shopping experience is the ultimate value proposition retailers can offer their customers, and the order delivery and fulfillment experience is a vital part of this new shopping journey. To succeed, retailers must allow shoppers to receive their items at any time, and through any channel.
Today’s consumers are always connected, interacting with companies using an array of devices and across multiple channels. Consumers’ ability to shop at any time and on any Internet-connected device gives them the freedom to choose when and where to browse. They can access pricing, inventory, and reviews from multiple sources. They can compare pricing with shipping from multiple online retailers. And many of them do this when they’re walking around in your store.