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How BOPIS and UGC Go Hand in Hand

Buy Online Pick Up In-Store (BOPIS) offers a great combination of online purchasing and convenient pickup, allowing the customer to choose a time and place that works for them. It is a flexible option for busy people who also want to avoid waiting for deliveries and wasting time with returns. Not to mention shipping prices. BOPIS saw a rise in sales in 2020, with a 259% increase, making it one of the most significant ecommerce trends of recent years.

BOPIS cannot happen in the first place if a brand cannot convince potential customers to shop online. Just like regular online shoppers, a person might be hesitant about purchasing a product they’re not looking at in-person. To build social proof in these customers and promote BOPIS, top brands opt to feature both user-generated content (UGC) across their marketing channels.

Alongside traditional ratings & reviews, UGC contextualizes a product visually and promotes purchase confidence by showing that other real people like your brand’s products. As a result, both marketing strategies work to increase conversion rates. This makes it a great marketing strategy for our digitized world. 41% of consumers only need to see between 1 and 4 pieces of UGC in order to be influenced to purchase, showing that this type of content lends itself to brand affinity and trust.

BOPIS seeks to reassure a customer that they can always return an item in the store if they don’t like it — right away or later on. This allows them to check the product out for themselves before taking it home. In fact, according to RIS News, research revealed that BOPIS was ranked by retailers as the number one most important customer-facing strategy. Combine the flexibility of BOPIS with the social proof element of UGC, and site visitors will be able to find all the information they need for a successful purchase.

BOPIS + UGC for Improved Customer Acquisition and Conversion

1. Meet Consumers Where They Are With Omnichannel Marketing

86% of customers are more likely to pick a certain brand (over its competition) if they follow that brand on social media. However, using social media as well as other channels like email to improve your brand recognition and trustworthiness isn't as simple as it may seem. You also have to choose the right platforms — the ones your target audience is already active on.

Additionally, your most valuable content shouldn’t stay siloed to one channel. Some of the most valuable UGC in generating shopper interest may originate on Instagram, but should be used by your brand across email, on-site displays, product pages, and other avenues to boost social proof and purchase confidence.

Consider using a UGC platform like Pixlee TurnTo to automatically collect and publish high-quality customer content across your various marketing channels. This ensures that you’re getting the most out of the content you gather from your community. Plus, content on your ecommerce website can be shoppable, tagged with products and a CTA encouraging them to buy online and pick up in-store.

On-site UGC can provide incredible value to your ecommerce strategy in general, especially when combined with BOPIS. Alo Yoga, which offers in-store pickup nationwide, saw a 107% increase in average order value after implementing UGC to the brand’s website.

2. Cater to Smooth Customer Experience

At the heart of both marketing strategies is creating a smooth, fully optimized experience for your customers. Everything involving the digital selling of your products needs to be intuitive and consistent.

The content on your website needs to be clear to read and easy to follow, from the moment they click on the link that sends them to your page, to the moment they reach the checkout page — and afterwards. Products need to be easy to browse and add to the basket. To aid BOPIS, you should offer pages categorized by products that are in your customers local inventory and available for click and collect.

A seamless experience lends itself to even more positive visual UGC and Ratings & Reviews that can be featured on your website to continue the BOPIS cycle. A robust approach to displaying this content on your product pages is a must; no one likes a website where you have to search for customer feedback on an item.

Like NAVY Hair Care, create space on your site for customers to easily upload their UGC once they’ve successfully purchased a product. It’s also worth it to intersperse visual content with written reviews, as one content type may be more impactful than another to specific shoppers.

3. Take Advantage of Localized Content

While UGC can come from diverse customers in different regions (especially for larger brands and chains), with the right UGC platform you can also filter your customer content by location to showcase a region-specific BOPIS offer or determine which shoppers may already be using and loving it.

Additionally, featuring UGC for specific locations on your ecommerce site provides a more personalized experience for site visitors in that area and reinforces community-building based on locale.

Levain Bakery began in New York and now boasts 8 unique locations both within and out of the state. As these new locations began to open up, Levain used Pixlee TurnTo to discover food influencers in these areas to generate buzz around the brand on social media directed towards foodies in each locale.

4. Provide Guidance for Improved Pickup and Post-Purchase Experiences

The in-person side of your marketing strategy has to be as seamless as your digital one. In particular, staff should be trained in omnichannel customer experience, so that they can navigate the ups and downs of digital and in-store retail as smoothly as possible.

To improve this, BOPIS parking, designated pick-up points, and easy to follow signs will ensure a streamlined experience for your customer. Use inventory tracking software to organize the products being purchased and returned every day. If your customer doesn't feel like BOPIS is convenient, they won’t opt to use it in the future.

Equally, you might be looking for specific things from the UGC and reviews you hope to gather from your community. Offering guidance about particular elements you want to advertise more strongly, or the products you most want discussed, can help you achieve this. Surveys sent to customers asking specific questions can also be useful, especially if you then collate data and make it readily accessible on your store or website.

Nike asks customers to rate their footwear purchases on set scales for size, comfort, and durability, and asks them what they’re primarily using their shoes for. This kind of extra information helps you improve your ecommerce strategy and helps other customers feel more confident that they know everything they need to know about a product.

BOPIS and UGC are two easy-to-implement strategies for brands looking to grow their customer base and conversionsAt the heart of both is a desire to make customer experiences as seamless and intuitive as possible. Harness the voices of your customers and the feedback they give to create an optimized, omnichannel marketing strategy.

Jessica Day is the Senior Director for Marketing Strategy at Dialpad, a modern business communications platform and VoIP gateway that takes every kind of conversation to the next level—turning conversations into opportunities. Jessica is an expert in collaborating with multifunctional teams to execute and optimize marketing efforts, for both company and client campaigns. Here is her LinkedIn. She has also written content for Pretty Links and Kanbanize.

Pixlee TurnTo Contributor

Pixlee TurnTo welcomes contributed content from leading marketers, influencers and ecommerce experts.

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