Physical and digital worlds collide in retail’s future
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Shop owners around the country are looking to improve the way they deliver goods to customers after 2020’s pandemic triggered a seismic shift in the way Australians shop.
Australian retailers believe speed of delivery and the number of delivery options will be consumers’ two biggest concerns when shopping online in the coming year, according to research by KPMG.
Their findings are supported by a nationally-representative survey conducted in 2020 by pick-up drop-off network Hubbed, which found click-and-collect services are now one of the three top retailer offerings for attracting online customers.
“Allowing for 24-hour collection, seven days a week, will only serve to help businesses further differentiate themselves from competitors,” Hubbed CEO David McLean added.
The click-and-collect market saw immense growth through 2020 (up 106.9% in the US alone) with forward indicators suggesting this will continue to increase, attracting new players like Australia’s TZ Limited to the space.
The company operates a leading access control platform, supported by its own range of digitally-enabled smart locks, and the company’s CEO Scott Beeton said the combination of these two products and services represent a ready-made solution for retailers.
“This sector is going through huge growth and it’s a large, addressable market for TZ,” he said.
The company’s solution allows retailers to place digitally-purchased goods into a secure locker bank – either at a physical store or standalone collection hub – and notify customers electronically.
Customers can then collect their items at any time of the day or night without needing to queue up or deal with staff in a face-to-face environment.
In instances where a product is incorrect, faulty, or unwanted, customers can also return the product using the locker – with the entire interaction managed by TZ’s market-leading software.
“You have a much more enhanced solution and you overcome some of the issues of the old model [of delivering goods to customers],” said Beeton.
Apple, Amazon, Singapore Post, Microsoft and Westpac are all counted among TZ’s existing client base, with a growing contingent of US-based universities also rolling out TZ’s solutions in their mail-rooms.
Beeton said this is where the real growth opportunity is for access control businesses – in improving the last mile delivery experience for ecommerce participants.
While the company already has the technology and a significant and growing pool of A-list clients, its market capitalisation ($13.53 million at close of trade May 13) remains well below its global peers.
Polish rival InPost commanded a market capitalisation of €7.3 billion ($11.88 billion) at the record time.
This discrepancy comes even after Beeton – who was appointed as CEO 15 months ago – cut fixed operating expenses by $2.5 million, doubled TZ’s sales pipeline, and delivered the business’ maiden profit.
Beeton believes these changes have put the company in a strong position to capitalise on the growing click-and-collect and ecommerce trend.
This article was developed in collaboration with TZL, a Stockhead advertiser at the time of publishing.
This article does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.