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Omnichannel investments create ‘hybrid’ shoppers

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Retailers’ omnichannel investments over the past two years have created a “hybrid” shopper, as consumers blend e-commerce with in-store pickup options for ease and convenience, according to a consumer insights survey from e-commerce logistics company Radial. Radial surveyed 1,000 U.S. adults about their retail buying habits as well as the impact of shipping delays and inflation on their brand experiences. The company found that most adults will continue to shop online, taking advantage of curbside pick-up and buy online, pick up in store (BOPIS) options that have become commonplace over the past two years. “E-commerce and omnichannel fulfillment services have become part of retail’s DNA, and require continued investment from retailers and brands,” according to Laura Ritchey, executive vice president and COO of Radial. “The implementation of digital capabilities does not stop when the pandemic ends–e-commerce is constantly evolving, along with consumers’ preferences, and brands need to follow suit. Services like buy online, pick up in store and curbside pickup have become channels for consumers to get products more conveniently, and it created an opportunity for retailers to diversify the fulfillment processes and scale operations.” Key findings from the survey include:

  • Online shopping is here to stay. More than half (54%) of consumers are shopping more online than in 2020, with a third saying they shop online a few times a week. At the same time, consumers are warming up to in-store shopping: 63% said they are willing to shop in-store without fear of exposure to Covid-19.
  • Self pickup gains steam. Curbside pickup (24%) and BOPIS (36%) are top shopping services consumers demand, according to the survey.
  • Delivery expectations ease. Half of Americans now consider three to four days a reasonable delivery time frame, according to the survey, with 60% of respondents willing to seek products from other brands or retailers if they experience longer delivery times.
  • Inflation affects buying decisions. Forty percent of consumers stopped purchasing unneeded items due to inflation, more than a third (34%) delayed less-important purchases, and 26% opted for bundled purchases to lower fees or shipping costs.