The COVID-19 pandemic has local businesses looking for ways to adapt to the current economic conditions. For many businesses, options like offering delivery or retail app development could be solutions.
Using e-commerce can be a way to help small or local businesses and Shopify has just released a new app that makes it easier for shoppers to find and buy from local businesses. The Shop app helps to connect users with businesses that are near their last delivery address and it makes it easy to browse products.
The app combines the features of the Arrive package-tracking tool and the Shop Pay service that provides convenient online checkout. Along with that, they have added the Shop Local feature that helps consumers find businesses near them. With more than a million merchants using the Shopify platform, this could offer a range of new shopping options depending on where you live.
The app is intended to be like a digital shopping assistant that works in a way that is similar to food delivery services like Grubhub or UberEats. The app will find local businesses that sell the products you are looking for and then you can scroll the offerings that are available and make purchases.
What’s great about this service is that local businesses do not have to pay any additional fees to be on the app and they do not have to pay commissions on sales that occur through the app. Furthermore, brands cannot pay more to appear higher in the listings.
With no added fees and the platform not favoring retailers willing to pay for higher placement, the Shop app could be an e-commerce solution that has significant advantages for small businesses. As an additional benefit, Shopify will provide brands that use the platform with access to their customer data. This is another way that the Shop app could stand out from platforms like Amazon.
The app also allows businesses to offer services like delivery, curbside pickup, and in-store pickup. This gives a nice advantage to some of these local businesses because many of them will be able to deliver products faster than other e-commerce operations. Along with that, curbside and in-store pickup can be attractive to customers who do not feel like waiting for delivery.
A lot of small businesses are at risk of shutting down as a result of the economic impact of COVID-19. The Shop app could offer a new way to reach customers and to keep money coming in as they wait for the economy to turn around.
It makes it easier for shoppers to discover their local business and it also provides information about whether the location is still in operation. The Shop app also simplifies the shopping process and makes it possible for these businesses to offer services for pickup and delivery.
At the moment, there are a lot of areas that don’t have good coverage with the shop’s local feature on the app. It only shows businesses that use Shopify’s services. However, that is probably part of the reason why they are offering this service at no additional charge – they see it as a good way to attract more small businesses to their platform.
Beyond helping consumers find local businesses and make purchases, the Shop app offers a range of benefits for small businesses and shoppers. Users can follow the shops they like and get notifications about new products and sales. This could make for an app that is more useful for consumers and it could also help businesses sell more to their existing customers.
With the app being just a few weeks old, the effect it can have on a small business is yet to be seen. In many cases, it might be most beneficial to small businesses that already have at least some e-commerce footprint.
For local businesses that are strictly brick-and-mortar operations, realizing the full benefit of the app will require some adjustments. Using Shopify’s platform will get your business listed for local customers, but you will still need to work out solutions for things like delivery and curbside pickup.
While the shop local feature is a big deal, the main purpose of the app is to provide a better experience for customers and businesses. The app also provides details about the businesses being featured and it has the tracking tool so users can get status updates about their deliveries. It also uses Shopify’s Shop Pay feature for a quick and easy checkout experience.
This could potentially be a great new e-commerce solution for small businesses and consumers. It offers a new way for consumers to connect with and buy from local businesses. At a time like this, it could offer a lifeline to struggling small businesses and it can also be a way for consumers to fulfill their shopping needs while also supporting local businesses.
Author bio (Rae Steinbach):
“Rae is a graduate of Tufts University with a combined International Relations and Chinese degree. After spending time living and working abroad in China, she returned to NYC to pursue her career and continue curating quality content. Rae is passionate about travel, food, and writing (of course).”
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