No-contact collection, store pick-up, click and collect, local delivery, and more options are sometimes the only way to survive for many businesses when a local government decides to put an area under restrictions or even a lockdown. So how can you adapt to these restrictions, offer alternatives, or even increase your options to improve your business and customer service?
Why set up store pick-up or ‘Click and Collect’?
Scenario; a customer buys a box of food from the local delicatessen butcher, but as they live nearby, they want to pick it up as most of the items are freshly prepared. Kept in cold storage, and there are parking restrictions in the high street, both the customer and shop keeper have a few challenges to overcome.
A) When does the customer know the order is ready for collection?
B) When does the shopkeeper know what time the customer will collect the box of goods? Too long out of the fridge, and it will go off. If it is not prepared, the customer will have to wait too long to get all the items from various store departments.
C) The customer does not want to pay until the goods have been received as there might be changes to the order due to weight and availability; plus, it saves having to refund items.
These are some real-life issues that every business has to overcome. So how to manage this and create a positive experience for both the business and the customer?
Setting up ‘Click and Collect’ for the local area only.
Not every item might be available for collections, so firstly, you need to set up the correct settings on your WooCommerce store.
1) Create a shipping zone for local delivery, so this option only appears when your customers are ordering from within your store’s location. Set up zones by region and postcodes.
Optionally, create a shipping class for click and collect. If not all items qualify, some might be too big or are stored at another location. If the items for non-collection are very few, you could create a shipping class for items that can only be delivered instead. A sort of rule to opt-out of the ‘Click and Collect’ option.
2) Next is to create shipping rules for Click and Collect, like the cost (Free in our example) and other options and descriptions.
When someone places an order, and the delivery address is within a certain area, they now have the option to collect it from your store for free.
3) To communicate with your customer, you need to notify them when an order is ready for collection. You can do this via email or SMS message. SMS has the advantage of pushing for notifications and keep the customer up to date every step of the way until they are on their way with the purchase.
It would be an option to create new order status’ so you can control every step of the ordering process and keep the customer up to date with an SMS text message.
Setting up SMS notifications for the shop manager and customer is not so tough at all. Using the YITH WooCommerce SMS notifications is all you need to create custom notifications.
Setting up Local Delivery and give your customers more options.
The obvious reason would be to increase your revenue, but some businesses rely on this option more than others. Think of locally sourced groceries, flowers, and skip-hire. As a result of local and national restrictions or lockdown, this is often a lifeline for many businesses.
Of course, let’s point out that you would need to have vetted and insured delivery staff to manage this part. Still, there are several options available, from using same-day delivery specialists to employing staff directly. But let’s not forget that many businesses might be residing in the same building or down the street.
Giving the option to get a delivery the same day can be a huge advantage to the competition. It can promote loyalty through good customer relationships.
Of course, it can be really tricky to balance the economic advantage versus the costs, but having good processes in place and limit the number of deliveries per hour and the available days, is a crucial start.
How to set up Local Delivery
Just like collection, you might want only to make this available to postcodes in your local area. This prevents someone from ordering a local delivery by mistake, or they might think they live closer than your 10 miles radius.
Installing the YITH WooCommerce Delivery Date allows you to set different restrictions for the delivery options.
The options are unlimited; you can add costs, restrictions, or hide the delivery for certain items or based on the postcode. You might want to add a minimum processing day with a cut off time at 5 PM on the working days.
These are just a few examples, and you can make it extremely complex for the business. As always, start simple and test the system out before adding too many rules, but at least you know the options are there. If you are not sure whether YITH is the right solutions, you can always find the link to the demo and sandbox site and the extensive documentation here >
Why set up Payment on Collection or Delivery
Now that we’ve set up collection and local delivery let’s extend this service to only take payment once a customer takes delivery or collects their order. In some countries, this is obligatory, but it could be considered good customer service and lower the threshold to place an order. It is much easier to place an order and only pay when the delivery person hands it over to you on the doorstep, right?
For some businesses, this is essential, too, as the weight and availability might determine the final price. Instead of creating a refund, the store admin can adjust the order and complete the payment once this is marked at delivery or collection.
How to set up payment on collection or delivery
By far, the easiest way to achieve this is by installing the YITH PayPal Payments for WooCommerce plugin and simply selecting the option ‘Authorize and Capture.’
As soon as you mark the order ‘complete,’ the payment will be made to your PayPal account. This option comes with the new PayPal Commerce Platform, and it gives you countless other credit and payment options that are very popular in Europe.
Don’t let the restriction put you out of business.
Catalog mode allows you to disable the whole store’s checkout process or just by category or tag. Request a Quote gives you the option to get in touch with the customer first and agree on a price, including delivery charges.
With so many uncertainties due to global localized lockdowns and quarantine restrictions, goods’ delivery can sometimes be a problem. You could also encourage people to pre-order and only fulfill once the items are back in stock or pay a deposit to get some commitment and secure the order.
YITH has pretty much every tool available to make your business succeed in the current climate. Never hesitate to reach out and ask for advice through our chat or support email.
Here is the list of plugins that can help you stay ahead of the restrictions and adapt your business accordingly.
YITH PayPal Payments for WooCommerceOffer more payment types than ever, including PayPal, PayPal Credit, card payments, and local payment methods – all with Fraud Protection on eligible transactions.
YITH WooCommerce Delivery DateAllow your customers to choose a specific delivery date for the products they purchase.
YITH WooCommerce Sms NotificationsStay updated with your orders: receive and send an SMS to your customers every time an order status changes.
YITH WooCommerce Deposits and Down PaymentsAllow your customers to split an order payment, leave a deposit and pay the balance at a later time.
YITH WooCommerce Custom Order StatusManage your order statuses in an advanced way and create custom labels for your orders.
YITH WooCommerce Request a QuoteHide price and/or add to cart button and let your customers request a custom quote for every product.
YITH WooCommerce Catalog ModeUse your shop as a catalog by hiding price or the Add to cart button on product pages.