Business First. Digital Second.
17 February 2021, by
For some getting back up and running after an initial Covid shut down was to open their phone line, maybe take orders through direct messages by email, whats app and instagram. Which was a start and when the order levels were small this was great.
As order levels grow, so does the complexity of keeping on top of tracking orders, taking payments, setting collection or delivery times, pre-paring orders and fulfilling orders, sending customers confirmation and receipts of payment....... and the phone keeps ringing one order at a time and as often as not customers became frustrated by not being able to make connect as the phone us engaged.
Many readily understood, online and mobile ordering could be a new dimension and make life easier. However, it was not something they had previously considered. They liked and wanted to meet and greet their customers. Also, without any so-called 'tech' skills or know-how this transformation was more than daunting. This is what bigger businesses did that have more resources and knowledge in this space. They had a justifiable idea that just getting their head around it and getting set up was going to a royal pain and in addition my customers prefer to come in and order directly.
So each of the newly minted next generation businesses that work with us, have been pleassantly surprised some of their pre-conceived notions didn't come to pass and there were many unconsidered positives that also played out.
Before we wrote a line of code for Click and Collection, we had set out a couple of objections in terms of how we wanted to build.
Any business should be able to set up without any technical knowledge.
That they could get trading within 30 mins, if they wished and the stars aligned. They would their own webshop that would outlast Covid and it would be cost effective. (There was more but we will keep them for another day).
So it is simple to set up on Click and Collection and decide and set the parameters in which you wish to operate. What times of the day, how many collections per time slot to manage your queues, set a minimum time buffer on orders, do wish have order cut off times, do the products you are selling have options and extras, tips or no tips, set up your staff team, print outs of daily orders, packaging slips, sales reports for your bookeeper.
Since April 10th 2020 when the first order was processed we got feedback from the businesses who had started using us to fine tune and automate processes that removed bottlenecks and hassles for them. ( this remains an ongoing process).
While 30 mins from a standing start to taking orders is a tall order, it has been done. The most impressive was 20 mins setting up on an iphone! None the less the process is straight forward, quick and simple.
For customers it is also very simple to use . They don't need to download and app or register with the site. In a couple of clicks they have ordered, paid and received an email of their collection and delivery time and receipt of payment.
Even though online commerce doesn't sleep in terms of being able to receive orders, many businesses hadn't psychologically jumped into that space. It hadn't occurred to them that they would turn on their dashboard at the start of their day and orders would be lined up waiting for them. They had been in the weeds focusing on coping.
A new business that joined in January set up their shop and informed all on social media and were blown away to have over 200 orders scheduled in for collection on their first weekend. A complete game changer for them. They were very much of their view that their customers would be set in theirs and that they would order and pay on their mobile would be highly unlikely.
I think it is fairly safe to say some customer behaviour has changed!
This week has been an interesting week in the lead up to Valentines weekend. Many restaurants and delis have pre-sold Valentine menus and food kits. It is no exaggeration that many of these sold out within an hour of going live.
For many this is a whole a new experience , while in theory they knew this could happen, the reality of it happening was a whole different and exciting experience. All collection slots filling for a 3 day weekend in less than an hour. Is a great tick of approval for the work they do and what they create. From a work flow perspective they know well in advance what they will be producing and most incredibly with zero waste. A beautiful unintended and postive consequence.
We love working with businesses that are now embracing digital so that they can concentrate on what they do best.
"For any of our colleagues in the industry thinking of doing take-away / click & collect we would suggest giving this great Irish business ClickandCollection.com a shout. They have one of the most intuitive & user friendly & very reasonably priced platforms to help you sell your fine wares. Our C&C page for The Oarsman has been a great asset to us when we were first in lockdown and when we opened our doors we were able to specify times for collection that did not interfere with your busy service rush and continue to offer dine in/dine out options. Great support & backup from Suzanne & team."