The Covid-19 pandemic has pushed many businesses to come up with clever ways to stay open. One great approach was the increased opening of curbside pickup zones with visibly branded displays, tents, and signs ready to go for their customers. While these efforts are a great approach for a curbside pickup zone, it’s also important to consider online resources for a smooth curbside process. As restrictions around the nation begin to ease, more restaurants and retail stores will need to know how to smoothly run their curbside zone with online services.
If you’re not tech-savvy or have little experience with order and delivery apps, this is the time to get familiar. Most lifted restrictions are limited to curbside services, meaning your restaurant or store will likely not be running as usual.
Rakuten Ready is a company offering retail stores and restaurants the opportunity to better connect with their customers through an app. Their features include the ability to keep track of customer arrival times and give your consumers a chance to find you with their location services. It also allows a customizable digital storefront to match your brand aesthetic and offers a checkout feature that grants several payment options. The app is also easily compatible with most POS systems, letting checkout run smoothly on both ends.
Now more than ever, a store or restaurant needs to be as accessible and accommodating to online shoppers as possible. Here are tips to help you make your curbside pickup process run smoothly and successfully.
For a safe curbside pickup, it’s essential that every customer’s visit is fast and efficient. This means their order is input and ready to be picked up by the time of their arrival.
It’s critical that your online menu or product list is up to date. Whichever online store site you’re using, keeping track of your stock and item list online is going to help an easy oversight of the process.
Something else to consider is the checkout process. These days many online shoppers have the ability to pay with Google Pay, Apple Pay, and Paypal along with the regular credit card options. Keeping business at a steady pace will mean adjusting to all these payment options, ensuring customers have many ways to support your business.
Arrival & Order Tracking Technology
Whether you’re using your store’s app features or taking advantage of third-party apps like Rakuten Ready, giving your customers the opportunity to notify your store of their proximity or arrival time is important.
You might be familiar with the way a pizza place or food delivery app will break down the order process for you. It will usually include a cool timeline that tells you your pizza is being made or that your deliverer is picking up your order from the establishment. Offering your customers a tracker or updates can help both your business and customers stay on the same page.
This way, customers will know if their order is ready for pickup, if something came up with the item they’ve requested or if there is an update on the particular item. Giving your customers a way to stay on track with you will avoid any miscommunication, especially one in the middle of a pickup zone with a line of cars behind them.
Social Media Engagement
In a digital world like today it is very common for retailers and restaurants to carry out customer service by engaging with customers on social media. As customers won’t have a way to browse freely through your store with sales associates for help, it’s important to create a channel where they can connect with you.
Social media can be utilized for many purposes. When business is slow, promoting a sale and launching a social media ad will bring customers to your site. If customers have a question about a product or service, the conversation can start in a comments section or direct message. If there’s a new item to promote, customers will be made aware through your social media promotion. Social media is as important as ever for curbside pickup, as they will act as the promotional signs and happy sales associates that used to greet customers inside the store.
With times like these, business is different and all the more competitive. Staying ahead of the game will mean making sure your curbside zone is running efficiently both on-site and online. Take advantage of this PDF checklist we created to make sure you have everything ready and set in place to open up and run a successful curbside pickup zone.