SINCE LAST JUNE, Suzuki has been allowing dealers to fulfill orders placed on www.suzukicycles.com. But retailers could only sign up to ship items to customers. Now they can also offer in-store pickup.
Consumers shop at the corporate site, but at checkout their orders are redirected to the website of Shopatron Inc., a company specializing in allowing suppliers to sell online without cutting out their retailers. Orders have been going to the closest dealer signed up with Shopatron to offer shipping.
Suzuki says that after six months of steadily increasing sales, it is adding, this month, one of Shopatron’s in-store pickup features: Shopper’s Choice.
During the checkout process, shoppers will be able to choose a dealer from a list of approved locations in their area where they may pick up their order. If the products are not immediately available at the selected location, shoppers can have the order shipped to their home or shipped to the selected dealer for future pickup. As with all Shopatron orders, the shopper receives updates, via e-mails and text messages, as their order progresses.
With each order, Shopatron charges a fee averaging about 3 percent. The percentage depends on the dealer margin for each product (the lower the margin, the lower the fee). When there are shipping costs, they are charged to the customer. Shopatron then reimburses the dealer for the amount of the order, minus its fee.
All Suzuki dealers can contact Shopatron to sign up as a product source. They can choose to offer in-store pickup, shipping or both.
“We originally chose Shopatron’s dealer-integrated fulfillment model so that we could send closed sales to our dealers instead of competing with them,” Gary Sherfey, Suzuki’s group manager of accessories sales and marketing, stated in a press release. “Now that we offer Shopatron’s in-store pickup feature, we are doing even more to send paying customers through their doors."
Ed Stevens is Shopatron’s founder and CEO. “In-store pickup is fast becoming an e-commerce requirement in today’s marketplace,” he said. “Shopper’s Choice allows shoppers to adapt their e-commerce experience to their lifestyle, schedule, budget and other personal considerations.” (Continued)