SAN MATEO, Calif., Sept. 2, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- A new study from Rakuten Ready, the leader in Order for Pickup technology, shows the growing influence on customer loyalty driven by the online pickup experience since the breakout of the COVID-19 pandemic. Since most of the United States went under Shelter In Place restrictions in March, the volume of online Order for Pickup transactions increased by over 200 percent and more than 82 percent of consumers said they have used Order for Pickup to purchase from restaurants, grocery stores and other retailers in the last six months.
These findings highlight theRakuten Ready 2020 Time Study, which provides compelling data on the progress of top Restaurants, Retailers, and Grocers in offering Order for Pickup consumer experiences so far in 2020.
The study also reveals the brands that offer the shortest wait times and highlights direct correlations between customer satisfaction ratings and other factors such as safety protocols in the Order for Pickup experience.
The Rakuten Ready 2020 Time Study explores findings from Rakuten Ready's exclusive data and in-person research that includes secret shopper Order for Pickup experiences at merchants in 11 major metropolitan areas in six states.
"Order for Pickup is a differentiator helping merchants enhance customer loyalty in the pandemic and will continue to provide a competitive advantage in a post-pandemic world," said Jaron Waldman, Co-Founder and CEO of Rakuten Ready. "Our study underscores that merchants have a tremendous opportunity to grow traffic and revenue by redefining and optimizing their Order for Pickup experience to adjust for consumer worries and gain their trust."
Wait times are still important, but COVID-19 has brought nuances
Reducing customer wait times continues to be a key factor for producing long-term customer loyalty, the study found. The pandemic has made it even more important for consumers to spend as little time as possible in stores waiting to pick up orders. This extends the trend identified in last year's report that found customers who wait under two minutes for an order are four times more likely to repeat purchase from the same retailer or restaurant.
While speed is crucial to a superior Order for Pickup experience, new data in this year's Time Study suggests that brands that fall short on wait times may be able to compensate with other factors. Brand loyalty, ease of process and uniqueness/value of products also contributed to customer satisfaction for brands that scored poorly on wait times.
"Our research found that time is precious for consumers, but overall satisfaction with the Order for Pickup experience hinges on more than speed alone," said Waldman. "Delivering a seamless pickup experience from start to finish is key to customer retention and satisfaction - starting from the moment a customer chooses a pickup option to the final step of safely picking up their order."
Rakuten Ready 2020 Time Study is available now
The Rakuten Ready 2020 Time Study is available now with a look into the impact of COVID-19 on the Order for Pickup experiences of major restaurants, grocers and retailers. It shares exclusive insights and best practices for timely and safe order for pickup experiences that exceed customer expectations, grow sales and keep customers coming back.
About Rakuten Ready Rakuten Ready, the leader in predictive arrival technology, is defining the future with solutions that make it easy to drive demand and deliver superior Order for Pickup experiences. The company works with leading brands such as Kroger, Applebee's, PetSmart, Petco, Nordstrom and Chick-fil-A to power their mobile order for pickup programs. Founded in 2013 as Curbside by former leaders of location innovation at Apple, Curbside joined the Rakuten family in 2018 to accelerate predictive arrival technology and scale on a global stage. In June 2019, Curbside became Rakuten Ready.