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Click-and-collect e-commerce set to boom

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Click-and-collect e-commerce, such as the locker system that Makro will introduce this year, is set to boom, according to a new report by Deloitte.

Click-and-collect e-commerce, such as the locker system that Makro will introduce this year, is set to boom, according to a new report by Deloitte.
The firm says in its TMT Predictions 2015 report, released last week, that strong growth is expected in Europe in particular where e-commerce is much more mature.

Click-and-collect e-commerce is when buyers make a purchase online and then go to a physical location — a locker or a store, for example — to collect what they’ve bought.

Late last year, Makro announced plans to invest in online “click and collect” lockers at Sasol petrol station forecourts.
“Informed by the experience of companies such as Walmart-owned Asda, Makro is acquiring access to sites to enable delivery of online customer orders to conveniently located secure lockers, making this an additional option for customers collecting online orders from Makro stores,” the retailer’s parent, Massmart, said in a statement at the time.

In 2011, online retail giant Amazon launched its Locker programme in New York, Seattle and London, a self-service delivery location that allow its customers to collect and return packages. Amazon users receive a Pin in their delivery notification that will allow them to open the locker. With Amazon, users need to collect packages within three business days or it is returned for a refund.

“The secure lockers, using a proven technology already deployed in other markets, will be located in safe and convenient locations including petrol station forecourts, fast food restaurants, office parks and Makro stores,” the South African retailer, which is owned by Walmart, said. “They provide customers with an additional delivery option which will supplement the home delivery and in-store click and collect solutions already offered by Makro.”

Deloitte says in its report that the key “friction point” in e-commerce continues to be delivery. People are not always home to receive their orders and, to keep costs down, logistics firms can’t promise exact delivery times.

“The direct cost to retailers of failed first-time delivery is over US$1bn/year in the UK alone,” the report says. “The indirect cost may be consumers taking their business to other retailers with more flexible delivery options.”

In the UK, home delivery volumes are forecast to flatten out in 2015, suggesting growth in e-commerce has to come from other delivery options, Deloitte says. This will prompt the strong growth in the click-and-collect model.

“In 2015, we expect that, of the 500 000 pick-up locations [in Europe], about two-thirds will be individual lockers, some of which will be in clusters of hundreds; just over a quarter will be third-party locations (post offices, for example); and the remainder (about 37 000) will be stores.

The UK, which is Europe’s most mature e-commerce market with about 13% of all retail sales in 2015 to come from online, will see fully a third of all online sales being delivered to click-and-collect locations this year, Deloitte says.

“Revenues from click and collect more than doubled in the UK between 2012 and 2014, reaching $8,7bn from 140m orders.”

Perhaps not surprisingly, non-grocery items represent the majority of sales to click-and-collect locations. — © 2015 NewsCentral Media

First published by Techcentral
20 January 2015.
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