May 5, 2011, 10:58 AM

Retailers fail to cash in on demand for in-store pickup

They’re missing out on a chance to please cross-channel shoppers, RSR Research says.

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Consumers are increasingly doing every step of their shopping—from research to payment—across an array of channels, such as mobile, online and in-store. That presents bricks-and-mortar retailers with a big opportunities to leverage their real-world presence by integrating in-store systems with their web and mobile order management systems, research and advisory firm Retail Systems Research LLC says.

“But today many retailers are either in denial or in transition,” RSR says in a recent report, “Omni-Channel Fulfillment and Future of Retail Supply Chain.” The study is based on a survey of 76 bricks-and-mortar by RSR from November 2010 to February 2011 and was sponsored by supply chain and inventory management technology providers Manhattan Associates Inc. and Red Prairie Corp.

RSR divided retailers in the study among those with comparative-store sales of better than the industry average of 3%, which it defines as “winners,” and “others” that don’t surpass that growth metric. Comparative-store sales refer to sales at stores open at least one year.

Among winners in the study, 64% say they offer some form of in-store pickup of non-store orders, which could be orders placed online, via a mobile device, or through a contact center—compared to only 50% among other retailers in the study.

The study also notes that 8% of the winners in the study use order management systems that can take non-store orders and fulfill them from any warehouse or store that has the desired inventory; the ordered products can then be shipped to the customer’s desired store location for in-store pickup. None of the other retailers in study offer the same service.

Nikki Bairdmanaging partner at Retail Systems Research, will discuss how retail chains can encourage their store employees to support cross-channel retailing strategies in a session entitled “Selling the store staff on the web initiative” at the Internet Retailer Conference & Exhibition 2011.

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