In this digital era, it’s getting harder and harder for retail stores to compete and stay afloat. More people are turning to online shopping as they strive for convenience & hassle-free solutions. This means that department stores will need to seriously innovate if they’re going to keep up! So, what can they do? Well, Nordstrom has an idea that they’re experimenting with and Walmart is following suit, this is what they’ve been up to:
Building physical stores that don’t sell anything
Yep, you read that right! Nordstrom and Walmart are both building physical stores that don’t actually sell anything. But why? Well, it’s all down to the new ‘Click & Collect’ movement.
Click & Collect
Click & collect is exactly what it sounds like. Customers place their orders online, and then collect their goods & groceries at designated pick up points. Now, it might sound like a bit of a ball-ache when you can simply order your bits online and have them delivered to your door, however this method is indeed, more convenient, and it’s all about timing.
When you have your goods delivered to your home, you have to wait around and be present for the order to arrive. This isn’t always the most convenient way to do things, particularly when your order can arrive any time between A and B. Who has time to wait around? What if something comes up and you want to head out? This is why Click & collect is so attractive, because you can conveniently collect your grocers precisely when you mean to, without having to bumble around the busy department store.
You won’t have to leave the comfort of your car
You place your order and then you’re given a designated parking space to collect from. Following that, you park up and your dedicated assistant will load the trunk of your car up with your order. Then, you simply drive home and voila, you’re all sorted with your weekly shop and you didn’t even have to leave the comfort of your car, nor did you have to walk around a department store in rush hour, and waste your time queuing up at the cash register.
“Nordstrom offers pickup at all its more than 100 full-priced locations around the United States, while Walmart is on track to offer pickup at more than 3,000 of its stores by the end of 2019.”
It’s growing fast
The new Click & collect revolution is growing rapidly. In fact, more than 15% of US shoppers are now embracing the innovation, and sales are estimated to hit an annual number of $35 billion by next year. This is a huge movement that is almost certainly going to throw a spanner in the works for digital retailers.
Online retailers that offer home delivery are going to struggle to compete with this new rise in convenient click & collect services. Unless they can offer accurate ETA’s on their home deliveries, as opposed to “anytime between A and B”, they’re going to seriously struggle. The ease of simply placing your order and having your car loaded up with everything you need is much more attractive. As such, you can expect to see physical retail stores competing with online retailers in a big way! Only time will tell.