Brick-and-mortar retailing still has room to thrive, even in a world where 55% of U.S. households have Amazon Prime accounts: 75% of retail business will still be driven by physical stores in 2022, according to a study by IHL Services. However, traditional retailers will need to adopt technology of their own to fight back against Amazon and stay relevant in this rapidly evolving world.
Retailers should keep in mind the top reasons shoppers still visit physical stores over e-Commerce sites:
- Need their purchase now (23%);
- Want to touch and feel the product, or need expertise (20%);
- Don’t want to pay a delivery fee (14%);
- Want to support local businesses (12%); and
- Convenience (11%).
Most of these desires can be met through a buy online, pick up in-store (BOPIS) program, according to Greg Buzek, Founder and President of IHL Services. This kind of service gives shoppers a reason to come in store, and can provide incentives that Amazon’s limited physical presence can’t match.
“People shop at stores because they need it now, or they need more experience: to touch and feel and try it on,” said Buzek in an interview with Retail TouchPoints. “If you can take that ‘need it now’, and add to it the fact that you can beat Amazon at their own delivery game with the BOPIS because you’re local, it can be very powerful.”
Out-Of-Stocks Can Erase A BOPIS Advantage
While BOPIS can be the best weapon retailers have in their fight with Amazon, they must back up the offer with solid execution. Out-of-stocks are a particular danger: Prime members who experience an out-of-stock are 71% more likely to shift a planned in-store purchase online than they would otherwise. Even non-Prime shoppers are 26% more likely to visit a competitor’s physical store when they experience an out-of-stock.
“It’s very hard if you miss that execution,” said Buzek. “People will excuse you if they just walk into the store and something is out of stock. But if they go online,…