September 9, 2009, 12:00 AM

The Container Store thinks outside the box and expands purchase pick-up

The Container Store recently offered a 15% discount on orders purchased on its web site but picked up in stores, resulting in online average ticket orders doubling those of in-store purchases.

Storage and organization products retailer The Container Store Inc. saw a spike in average order size of online purchases during a promotion of its Click & Pickup program. From May 11 through Aug. 23, customers were offered a 15% discount on orders purchased on ContainerStore.com but picked up at stores. The company found that the average ticket for online purchases was double the average in-store sale. The company didn’t provide specific order figures.

The Container Store says the Click & Pickup program is geared to helping busy customers save shopping time and shipping costs. Many of its customers are women “who are busy managing careers, kids or both, and our goal is to help them save time,” says a company spokeswoman.

In addition to its in-store pickup program, early this summer The Container Store launched its Call Ahead program in which customers can have items bought online loaded into their cars. Once customers have made online purchases, they can call five minutes ahead and an employee will be ready to load the merchandise on arrival.

“When we first launched the site, our goal was to drive traffic to stores. We know now that the web is our best-selling store. Ultimately, it all comes down to the same bottom line and our objective of how to get customers to stores or the web site more frequently,” the spokeswoman says.

The Call Ahead program is now offered at most of the company’s 47 locations. The Container Store is No. 295 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide.

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