Why Businesses Are Encouraging Consumers to Buy Online and Pick Up in Store

on Dec 14, 2022

It’s challenging enough for businesses to reach and convert customers.

Businesses need to offer the right products with the right marketing. In addition, the value the consumer gets out of a product must match the price they’re willing to pay.

Consumers have specific expectations for delivery as well. If businesses don’t provide flexible delivery options, they may lose out on revenue.

In fact, more than 77% of consumers have abandoned their carts because they wanted better control over their delivery options. 

In this post, we’ll explore how businesses are leveraging lockers as a unique buy online, pick up in store solution for flexible last-mile delivery. 

Before we dive in, let’s take a look at some of the reasons consumers are craving this delivery option and why your business should implement it soon.

What is buy online, pick up in store (BOPIS)?

Buy online, pick up in store (BOPIS) is a delivery method that enables consumers to purchase an item online and pick it up at a retail location. 

Unlike curbside pickup and other pickup options, the BOPIS pickup location can vary depending on what products the customer selects during the online checkout process. Sometimes, their products are waiting for them at the register, customer care counter, or even a parcel locker solution at the store.

It’ss more common for an item to be available at the counter if the customer is buying directly from that store’s site. If the customer is buying from a third party (e.g., Amazon), they are more likely to use the parcel locker at the store.

Businesses Get Ahead Offering BOPIS

BOPIS provides consumers with greater flexibility and more confidence in their deliveries when purchasing. It puts customers in control of how they want to receive their products and enables businesses to streamline their delivery channels.

If the business gives customers the BOPIS option, consumers can typically select this option during the shipping part of the checkout process. Then, they'll receive a notification — often by email or phone — when their item is ready for pick up at their selected store. 

Why do consumers want to buy online and pick up in store?

You might be wondering, “Why would I want anything other than just sitting at home and getting the product delivered to my doorstep?”

Although direct-to-your-door delivery is convenient, there are many reasons consumers and enterprise businesses may want the option to buy online and pick up in store. These reasons depend on a wide range of consumer preferences.

Consumer Reasons to BOPIS

Some of the most popular reasons consumers want to buy online and pick up in stores (BOPIS) include:

  • Reliability: The consumer knows exactly where the package will be delivered and won’t have to worry about it getting dropped off at a neighbor’s front door.
  • Security: The locker at the store may be more secure than the customer’s house or apartment drop-off point, giving the buyer peace of mind that their package won’t be stolen.
  • Efficiency: Rather than picking up their package at an inconvenient and unsecure location near their home or apartment, the consumer could easily pick it up from a store that they already plan to visit in the next few days. 
  • Cost: If a customer is buying online from the same store they’re picking up in, they likely won’t have to pay the shipping cost that would have been added if they had gotten the package delivered.

Consumers find value in the BOPIS delivery option, and enterprise businesses are stepping up to provide this offering. In fact, it’s estimated that the global smart locker market will exceed $1 billion by 2026.

Businesses that offer this delivery flexibility will typically be more likely to succeed in the long run. Making it easier for customers to purchase and receive their products in a safe and secure manner will deepen customer loyalty, drive repeat purchases, and increase customers’ overall lifetime value.

Aside from providing value to customers, are there any other motivators for enterprise businesses to offer this delivery option? Let’s take a look at a few of the most common benefits offering a BOPIS service has for businesses.

The benefits of offering a BOPIS option for businesses

Businesses are typically motivated to make their offerings as frictionless and enticing as possible for customers. But there are many reasons a business itself can benefit from offering BOPIS service.

The Business Benefits of BOPIS

Enterprise businesses typically offer a BOPIS option for customers for the following reasons:

  • Customer satisfaction: By offering BOPIS, enterprise businesses allow customers to take control of their purchases from the moment they buy to the point at which the purchase is delivered. This option helps to increase consumers’ confidence in the business and their loyalty to it over time. In addition, the ease of the checkout process could make the business a customer’s preferred vendor.
  • Lowered costs: Research shows that the last mile of the delivery process accounts for approximately 53% of the delivery cost. Delivering packages directly to a communal location via the same courier will reduce the number of additional trips and personnel needed. 
  • Improved efficiency: Mastering last mile delivery and shipping multiple packages to the same location will reduce the amount of time and resources your delivery team needs while enabling them to solve other challenges and service other customers.
  • Fewer stolen packages: Packages delivered to lockers in stores will be in a secure location that only the purchaser can access, preventing theft and costs incurred by the business for stolen items.
  • Fewer customer inquiries: With more accurate deliveries taking place, your customer support channels will be freed from inquiries about lost packages or providing other updates on customers’ shipments. The straightforward process is an intuitive experience that most consumers will learn quickly.

All of these benefits of offering a BOPIS service positively impact a business’s bottom line and distinguishes a company from its competitors.

If your business is offering BOPIS functionality and a competitor isn’t, your flexible delivery service could win more customers. 

Three trends that have led to increased demand for BOPIS options

The idea of BOPIS isn’t new, but it has grown in popularity in recent years. As more enterprise businesses start offering it, consumers will start expecting it from all companies across industries.

Trends Leading to BOPIS

Here’s a look at the three core factors for higher demand for BOPIS offerings.

An increase in eCommerce purchases

First, there has been a boom in eCommerce purchases due to the pandemic. Data shows that eCommerce sales increased by $244.2 billion (43%) in 2020, the first year of the pandemic. This ushered in a new wave of consumers purchasing online as well as demand for varying types of pickup options.

Major advancements in smart locker technology

There have also been major advancements in technology in the automated parcel locker industry. New features for smart lockers, including touch screens, collection notifications for apartment buildings, and even controlled temperature functionality for food deliveries, have been introduced.

This has enabled many more businesses, like grocery stores, to participate in a BOPIS locker delivery system. More than 70% of consumers will participate in grocery shipping by 2032.

Increase in stolen packages

Postal workers have recently called the rise in stolen packages an “epidemic” facing the country. As more packages get swiped from doorsteps, more consumers will start looking for alternative shipping measures, like BOPIS, to make sure that their deliveries stay safe.

As BOPIS becomes more integrated into society, more consumers will start demanding it in every industry. Enterprise businesses getting ahead of the trend and offering it today will be leading the way for others to follow.

How the BOPIS delivery process works

Now that we’ve discussed the benefits of using a BOPIS system, let’s take a look at how exactly BOPIS works — for both the consumer and the business. 

The BOPIS Process

There are four main steps in the process of establishing your BOPIS offering:

  1. Create a partnership: A deal is struck with a participating store to host a parcel locker on the premises.
  2. The online transaction: The customer places an order online and selects the “Pick Up in Store” option.
  3. Selecting the pickup location: A list of available stores with certified parcel lockers for in-store pickup appears. The consumer selects one that is convenient for them.
  4. The redemption process: Once the package arrives at the locker, the consumer is notified and provided a unique code or barcode to scan for the package’s retrieval.

Parcel lockers are an essential part of the BOPIS process and give flexibility to the customer. However, they can’t always operate on their own. They need to be connected to the buying process via a software system. Interfaces like Delivery Solutions can integrate with lockers in a store to facilitate the interface between the locker technology and the consumer.

The BOPIS process is typically a seamless experience for consumers who want to pick up their packages on their own time.

Two BOPIS examples: Implementation and consumer execution 

There are tens of thousands of businesses around the world that offer a BOPIS experience to their customers. 

Let’s take a look at two examples currently in the market and see how their BOPIS services are deployed. 


Amazon is the category leader for the BOPIS option. Amazon users can place their orders online and pick them up in a local store, such as Best Buy or Sears.

Amazon also has various “Amazon Hubs” placed near stores and gas stations, making their own locker options readily available for consumers as well.

Logo cloudl of Amazon partner retailers

Old Navy

Old Navy also offers a BOPIS option for online shoppers.

The popular clothing brand heavily promotes this option on its website by allowing users to toggle and show items eligible for in-store pickup only:

Screenshot of Old Navy Website with Clothing Options

How to get started with BOPIS

Convinced that your business needs to start offering a BOPIS option on your site?

Enterprise businesses will need to prepare accordingly and complete a few steps before a customer can pick up their package in a local retail store or locker.

Before customers can select BOPIS as a delivery option, businesses will need to establish partnerships with retail locations and a delivery solution interface.

Partnerships with retail locations

Establishing partnerships with retail locations as pickup areas is key. However, you want to make sure you don’t pick the wrong business or install a smart locker in an area that your customers don’t frequent.

Analyze the demographic and geographic data you have on your customers to highlight the key regions that stand out to invest in and offer a BOPIS option. This is likely where you should pilot the offering, and you can begin your national rollout once that initial offering is successful.

Delivery software interface

A software provider like Delivery Solutions is necessary to create the interface, connecting the online shopping experience to the locker. This is vital to the success of a BOPIS program.

Delivery Solutions enhances store operations by optimizing the fulfillment process with real-time customer tracking and shorter pickup times. The BOPIS offering will only be successful if the delivery process — from the minute the order is placed to the minute it is picked up — is seamless. 

Delivery Solution helps make this happen while providing visibility and recommended optimizations to make the process more efficient for customers and enterprise businesses alike.


Businesses that offer BOPIS options provide their customers with much-needed flexibility. In addition, this decision impacts the company’s bottom line, improves efficiency, and grows customer loyalty.

By adopting a BOPIS delivery option, businesses show their customers that they are listening to their needs. As a result, they make it easier than ever before to buy and receive their products.

Learn more about how Delivery Solutions can provide your customers with a buy online, pick up in store option with our solution.

Delivery Solutions orchestrates fulfillment experiences for enterprise retailers, supplying flexible optionality for consumers and priming merchants for innovation at scale.

About the author

Caitlyn Metzker

Caitlyn Metzker, a professional with 9 years of experience, brings a wealth of insight to her Sr. Enterprise Account Executive role. As a University of South Carolina graduate, Caitlyn has honed her skills within the industry previously with Roadie and Kabbage. Originating from Philadelphia, her multifaceted interests include traveling, hiking, soccer, swimming, and boating, reflecting her adventurous spirit. Her favorite getaway is the picturesque Kauai, Hawaii. Caitlyn's business philosophy underscores the importance of continuous learning, as she believes that "there is always more to learn; absorb as much as you can." When not devising groundbreaking strategies, Caitlyn unwinds by delving into books or enjoying the serene beach. Adding a unique touch, she cherishes the privilege of occasionally working alongside her sister and mother as part of the UPS Digital family. Caitlyn's profound industry knowledge and passion make her an invaluable asset to our B2B SaaS sales and marketing team.


Topics from this blog: Delivery Bopis

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