Why set up ‘click and collect’?

Click and Collect - photo by mad-fish-digital-igQBZ6aBFIw-unsplash
‘Click and collect’ is now an important part of retail

We are all adjusting fast to the world online: Zoom, online shopping, etc. If you are a retail company that has until now existed only in the real world, then the continuing restricted opening hours of shops then the shift online is a real problem.

Setting up a full online shop takes time and effort. It might be a and you need a quicker solution. ‘Click and collect’ is a good option if you want to continue to trading in an world where the restriction are likely to continue and change all the time.

What do I need to do basic ‘click and collect’?

Basically, just a list of products with their prices, a way for people to get in touch with you and a place to put them on the internet.

Step 1 – Make sure people can contact you

The first step is just advertising your phone number or email and saying that you can do ‘click and collect’. This could be on your website, if you have one, or on social media. If you put this information into your profile on Facebook and Instagram rather than just on a post, it can become a permanent part of your presence but you still need to post to advertise your services. Getting this far means that people can contact you and then you can sell them what they need.

Step 2 – Add some product information

That’s fine, as far as it goes, but if you become popular you may get fed up with explaining the products available every time someone phones up and it will be time-consuming. A better idea is to get your product list and prices online. How you do so depends on what you’re using.

  • If you’re on Facebook, you could use a sticky post to do this, so that the information is always at the top of your feed. Also, it could be worthwhile changing your contact button to say “Click and Collect”
  • If you have a website add a new page or downloadable file. For a download, it’s better as a PDF as there are security issues with having a Word or Excel file as a download (possible back door for hackers).
  • If you have use of an email marketing tool and have a list of customers already, then you can email it directly to them.

Step 3 – Add photos

People like to see what they can buy, so add photos to your order form or post product pictures on social media. However, do remember that the photos are good quality. No one is encouraged to buy if you use an out-of-focus photo taken from a funny angle.

Next steps

That should get you going, but if it really takes off you might decide that it should become a permanent feature of your business. If that is the case, it is worth investing a bit of time to make sure it’s set up the get the most business you can from it. There are lots of options:

Facebook Marketplace – you can put up products with prices, but there’s no payment mechanism. That’s fine for ‘click and collect’ but if you want to move to online sales, it doesn’t make it easy to collect the money reliably.

Shpock and other “car boot” apps – these are much like Facebook Marketplace, but on Shpock there is an option for payment via PayPal if you have a ‘shop’ which will make life easier.

If you have a website, ask your developer about putting more product information and a simple order form on the site (one that people just say what they want). Like Facebook Marketplace, this is half way to a shop. It won’t take payments but does sort out the order trail.

If you want to take the plunge and go for a full online shop there are lots of options. That will be the subject of another blog but if you can’t wait until then or want some advice on setting up your ‘click and collect’ service, get in touch with us to discuss the options further.