Online ordering with curbside pickup had already been gaining traction in the grocery industry before the pandemic, but consumers fully embraced the service during the pandemic. They appreciate the ability to order ahead from and have their food placed in their trunk without setting foot outside their car.
The grocery pickup segment grew its share of online sales to 45% in 2021, up five percentage points versus 2020, according to the most recent Brick Meets Click/Mercatus Grocery Shopping Survey.
“Even before the pandemic started, pickup was preferred over delivery,” said David Bishop, partner at Brick Meets Click. “Then in April 2020, pickup took the top spot away from ship-to-home, and it’s kept that spot ever since.”
Although most grocery retailers used third-party delivery platforms when they began selling online, the U.S. is a pickup-dominant market, the report concluded.
The service has become so pervasive that consumers have come to expect a high level of execution when it comes to curbside pickup. Retailers that offer curbside pickup in a seamless and efficient manner can gain a competitive advantage.
Grocery retailers need to think of their curbside pickup in terms of the customer experience. Retail parking lots have always played an important role in shaping perceptions of the brand, but with curbside pickup, it has become even more important for grocery retailers to ensure they are making the right impression.
The grocery store parking lot can be a busy place, and retailers need curbside pickup wayfinding signs that stand out and are easily visible as customers navigate the parking area. A typical large grocery store might offer up to six spaces dedicated to curbside pickup, or as many as eight spaces at higher-volume locations.
Spaces are typically located close to the store’s entrance to aid in the efficient fulfillment of orders. That means shoppers walking from their cars to shop inside the store could be exposed to increased vehicle traffic, so safety is of paramount concern when designing curbside pickup areas.
Damage to vehicles and to store signage has been increasing, so the ideal signposts should be able to withstand minor collisions without damaging cars or other property.
FlexPost, which manufactures impact-resistant sign posts and bollards for a wide range of industries, can break down the anatomy of a great curbside pickup system,including elements such as placement, traffic flow and visibility. The company has worked with multiple retailers and facility maintenance professionals to help manage traffic for curbside pickup and other signage needs. Its flexible signposts and bollard systems save retailers thousands of dollars annually in parking lot repair and maintenance costs, while improving the customer experience.
FlexPost products meet ADA height regulations, too, and withstand vehicle impacts by remaining flexible and durable during repeated hits, while minimizing damage to parking lots and vehicles. The company also offers custom branding options that can include a retailer’s logo and can match its color scheme. FlexPost can also support large, nationwide implementations.
The FlexPost-XL heavy-duty flexible signposts and bollards can be quickly installed, offer significant cost savings and are built to withstand the rigors of heavily-trafficked parking lots.
Visit flexpostinc.com/grocery or call 888-307-6610 to learn more.
This post is sponsored by FlexPost