Post-Covid ‘hybrid shopping’ becomes the new normal: 

30-day countdown begins for 2023 Absa Cape Epic
14th Feb 2023
Exxaro Women’s Jersey breaks new ground for black female mountain bikers
20th Feb 2023

Post-Covid ‘hybrid shopping’ becomes the new normal: 

The ins and outs for SA shoppers on the scout

Cape Town 20 February 2023 – How quickly hybrid shopping became the norm.

Where only two years ago online shopping numbers were through the roof as people were stuck at home waiting for the Covid-19 danger to pass, the preference for both online and in-store buying now holds sway.

Research by computer giant IBM shows that hybrid shopping is the primary buying method for 27% of consumers, and a whopping 36% of Generation Z. Further studies by Vodafone finds that 75% of businesses say their customers expect to be able to interact with brands anytime, anywhere, via digital services.

While some may find it surprising that people have not turned their backs on traditional brick-and-mortar shopping, there are good reasons for this.

For one, every shopper’s mindset is different. We all have our likes and dislikes, our favourites and least favourites, and so it is when it comes to shopping as well. What works for some will not work for others.

The other important thing to consider is that not everyone is convinced of online shopping’s effectiveness.

A lot of shoppers actually don’t like being spoilt for choice, as strange as that may seem. Making a selection online can be extremely time-consuming as you wade through endless lists of items. Then there might be issues with logins, remembering passwords or digital payments once checked out.

The shopper would much rather drive to the store, make a beeline for the aisle, purchase what they need, and go.

That’s not to say they’re against buying online; quite the contrary. This channel is far more convenient on days like Black Friday or ahead of the festive season. After all, who in this world actually likes spending hours in queues surrounded by strangers whose frustrations are matched only by your own?

What shoppers want now are multiple channels to get what they want with the least amount of hassle.

Click & collect shopping, where customers order an item online and then pick it up from a designated pickup point, goes hand in glove with the hybrid model, and it’s little wonder it’s popularity continues to grow post pandemic.

What makes it so appealing is that many of their favourite stores also serve as pickup points, so customers can simply collect what they’ve ordered online when they nip out to the shop for groceries.

In South Africa, click & collect specialist Pargo has more than 3,000 pickup points where shoppers can collect or return their parcels. Most of these are located at big-brand retail chains like Clicks, TFG stores, Sportscene and Totalsports.

“It is now the minimum to offer a variety of delivery options, like click and collect, home delivery and returns, among others, to shoppers. It’s all about making their lives easier,” says Pargo CEO and co-founder Lars Veul.

“That’s why hybrid shopping has become what it has – convenience. Even if you’re in a township area or places couriers find difficult getting to, there’s a pickup point nearby so you can simply collect your order when you go out to top up on bread and milk.”

Click & collect also speaks to another important aspect: pricing.
Pargo offers a flat rate for deliveries and returns anywhere in the country, while costs are also brought down through consolidated deliveries.
In the final analysis, it’s these levels of multiplicity and cost-effectiveness that will come to define the hybrid age.

Word Count: 557

About Pargo:

Pargo is a Cape Town-based tech company that solves the challenges of last-mile logistics through its smart
logistics platform and fulfilment solutions, which are anchored by a vast, nationwide network of thousands
of Pargo Pickup Points. Pioneering Click & Collect back in 2015, Pargo continues to develop their technology and processes to make fulfilment solutions fit for the African logistics landscape, including Home Delivery,
Returns and micro-warehousing. Clients that use their tech include Edgars, rain, TFG, Cape Union Mart,
Clicks and HomeChoice.

Lars Veul is the CEO and co-founder of Pargo, a smart logistics platform that simplifies online delivery
through its tech-enabled network of Pargo access points. Prior to starting Pargo, Lars was part of the
founding team at Groupon, where he headed up the online marketplace, which exposed him to the
challenges of online delivery. He is also an Alibaba eFounders fellow and is part of Endeavor.

Comments are closed.