STUDY: Customers Who Wait Less than 2 Minutes are 4X More Likely to Return

Anna Wolfe
Senior Editor, Restaurants
The volume of online Order for Pickup transactions increased 200%, and more than 82% of consumers said they have used Order for Pickup from restaurants, grocery stores and oth

When 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% and more than 82% of consumers said they have used Order for Pickup to purchase from restaurants, grocery stores and other retailers in the last six months, according to the new Rakuten Ready 2020 Time Study.

Wait Times & COVID-19

There's a direct correlation between the shortest wait times and high customer satisfaction ratings and other factors such as safety protocols in the Order for Pickup experience.

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.

The Order for Pickup experience hinges on more than speed alone, says Rakuten Ready.  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.

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 restaurants, grocers and retailers at  in 11 major metropolitan areas in six states.

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, says Rakuten Ready.

Access the Rakuten Ready 2020 Time Study HERE.


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