Online retailer Amazon announced its partnership with newspaper and magazine wholesaler Smiths News last week, in order to launch a same-day click and collect delivery service for its customers. The new service will allow customers to collect orders placed in the morning after 4pm in the afternoon on the same day, at one of 500 locations.
Next-day delivery has been a standard industry offering for some time but by presenting customers with the opportunity to collect their purchases the very same day, Amazon has demonstrated a commitment to facilitating customer choice and convenience by providing the ‘always available’ option.
Offering a same-day collection or delivery service requires sophisticated operational organisation and investment- every aspect of the supply chain has to function in seamless unison to enable rapid order fulfilment.
The significance of Amazon’s new service is clear - if consumers can receive an item from an alternative supplier on the day of purchase then they will certainly shop elsewhere. In the modern retail industry, the connection between supply chain and execution must be fast, integrated and customer-focused to avoid losing out to the competition.
John Lewis is also listening to consumers’ needs for convenience in their shopping journey and has ventured into new territory with opening its first ever railway station store at St Pancras International in London. John Lewis and Amazon are demonstrating that the ability to provide a variety of convenient purchase channels and delivery options is now common place.
The challenge for retailers that want to be successful is to recognise that consumers want options when it comes to collection or delivery of their orders. In our 2014 research report “The New Retail Democracy”, we saw that 93% of UK respondents will not wait for an out-of stock item and 90% will source the product elsewhere.
To deliver democratic retail, a retailer’s priority is to provide commerce anywhere. To enable this, retailers must focus on integrating business processes and aligning their operations with the needs of the individual consumer, in order to stay relevant, competitive and deliver on the brand promise.
To learn more about our New Retail Democracy research please visit here.