This post was originally published on the Shopify Retail blog.
As holiday buying heats up, the growing consumer practice known as showrooming — when customers visit a retailer to check out an item, only to buy it later online — can challenge many retailers.
We get it. Showrooming might seem like a difficult obstacle to overcome. But retail done well, especially with thoughtful merchandising and knowledgeable sales staff that represent your brand, should be rewarding for both shoppers and your bottom line.
So, how can you embrace challenges like showrooming and actually make it work for your retail business?
Shopify is rolling out a new feature to tackle this precise problem. Buy Online for Shopify POS helps retailers turn shoppers using their phones in-store from a threat to a way to boost sales.
Introducing Buy Online for Shopify POS
Buy Online for Shopify POS is a new feature that acknowledges the traditional shopping experience for your customers is changing and lets your customers purchase when and where they want.
You can now offer shoppers who walk into your store a way to try your products in-person, and buy online at a later date — whenever they’re ready. And for online-only sellers, Buy Online for Shopify POS makes the idea of extending your online brand in-person through a pop-up shop or concept store an even more enticing option.
Now you can provide all the benefits of online shopping — home delivery, no lineups, and no store inventory issues — and close more sales if customers aren’t ready to buy before they leave your store.
How Does Buy Online for Shopify POS Work?
Buy Online for Shopify POS, now available for iPad, can help you improve the shopping experience for your customers while boosting sales (and your bottom line). Sales reps approach customers to offer a no-obligation purchase experience. Your staff helps customers create an online cart while they shop in-store, then email it to customers so they can decide whether to buy online later.
Staff can include relevant customer information, tax exemptions, discounts, and shipping rates to simplify and improve their customer’s purchase experience. So, whether shoppers purchase in-store on their smartphone, at a coffee shop, or at home on their desktop, Buy Online for Shopify POS helps retailers benefit from wherever and whenever your customers decide to buy.
And to keep staff motivated, Buy Online attributes the sale to the staffer who sent the Buy Online link. Staff will continue to be compensated and credited for their hard work, ensuring they continue to represent your brand well.
It’s precisely these features that encouraged Endy, Canada’s leading online mattress brand, to try Buy Online for Shopify POS.
“As our online presence continues to grow, pop-ups and showrooms have become an integral part of our omnichannel strategy,” said Aashish Nathwani, Marketing Director for Endy. “The challenge for us has been implementing the same kind of seamless, data-driven approach to our in-store checkout that customers have come to expect from us online. We are excited to add Buy Online for Shopify POS to our omnichannel toolkit, leveraging one-touch payment, and making it easier than ever to sleep better with Endy.”
Re-Engage Customers to Prevent Lost Sales (And Grow Them, Too)
Buy Online for Shopify POS is a powerful tool that bridges the in-person and online commerce divide. Using Buy Online for Shopify POS, you can also track and re-engage customers that receive assistance from your staff in-store.
Consider it the equivalent of a real-life abandoned cart. When you send an email to a customer using Buy Online for Shopify POS, a draft order is created in Shopify. You can use draft orders to re-engage your customers with targeted promotions or an email marketing campaign using the customer info you’ve collected. These tailored emails and offers can reignite that customer’s desire to buy from your brand.
And it’s easy to tailor every email you send via Buy Online for Shopify POS. Visit the admin to customize your Buy Online for Shopify POS email template to reflect your brand to ensure your online and offline experiences are as cohesive as possible.
5 Reasons You Should Try Buy Online
1. Harness the Power of Mobile
Shoppers are actively using their phones in stores. A Think With Google survey shows that 82% of smartphone users consult their phones on purchases they make.
To take advantage of this trend, empower your customers to buy online at their convenience using their mobile device and a frictionless accelerated checkout system like Shopify Pay or Apple Pay. With a link to their product carts, they can buy later — whenever and wherever works best for them.
2. Use Your Discounting Power
Because customers may still want to check online for a better deal, you can apply a discount to the Buy Online link to match a competitor’s online price, increasing your chances of keeping the sale.
3. Capture the Window Shopper
No matter what customers are doing — from browsing to price matching — Buy Online is a natural ice-breaker. You can sweeten the deal with a discount, and of course, the convenience of being able to buy and pay later. So, it’s easier to turn those browsers into buyers.
4. Never Worry About Out-of-Stock Products
If you’re out of a product in-store, but you know the same or a comparable product is available on your site, Buy Online will keep the product and order top of mind, with a link for customers to buy it later.
5. Let Your Customers Skip the Line
Long holiday checkout lines can keep customers away, causing them to leave before making a purchase. Buy Online gets rid of long lines since products can be shipped wherever the customer wants.
Try Buy Online for Shopify POS Today
Whether it’s a more convenient experience, or the desire to see and touch your products in person, customer demands are easier to meet with Buy Online for Shopify POS. Now you can set up a seamless showrooming experience just in time for Black Friday Cyber Monday and the holiday selling season.