Consumer expectations of Order for Pickup are growing as the COVID-19 impact continues

Rakuten Ready

Posted by: Rakuten Ready / August 11, 2020

Out of necessity, the contactless Order for Pickup experience has evolved dramatically since the COVID-19 crisis started and, even amidst a pandemic, continues to grow in popularity with consumers. Our Rakuten Ready Contactless Playbook, launched in April, was developed to provide brands with insights that can help them understand these changes and guide their contactless Order for Pickup strategy. 

But even in the short amount of time since we launched the playbook, consumer behavior has evolved. In this blog, we take a look at some of the ways consumer behavior has changed since April. 

It is critical merchants understand how consumers are adapting to the crisis and how expectations will continue to rapidly evolve as time goes on. 

Since last surveyed, consumer expectations have increased 

To understand what has changed over the last few months, we revisited a few questions from our Contactless Playbook. Our latest survey (conducted in early August) found that consumer behavior has continued to adapt and evolve:

1. Consumers have become less patient with waiting to pickup orders

In our August survey, consumers have less patience when picking up an online order with 75% (vs 61% in our earlier survey) wanting their order ready in 10 minutes or less, a 23% increase. 


During the early pandemic days, consumers were more understanding with merchants as they rolled out their new processes.  However, as time has gone on and consumers have learned more about how the virus spreads, and as such, there is much less tolerance for lingering on-site and waiting to pick up an order. Consumers now want to get in and out as quickly as possible.

2. Even more consumers have shifted to using Order for Pickup and will continue to use it

When we initially asked consumers if they have recently used online Order for Pickup as a result of the pandemic, 82% said “yes” (vs 76% previously).


Consumers are also planning to continue using Order for Pickup, with 85% (vs 73% from earlier) saying they will not change their online shopping behavior any time soon.

Many consumers started using Order for Pickup out of necessity but as they begin to realize the benefits of convenience, time savings, and safety they have made it their new normal. As brands continue to improve the experience, they can also expect even more consumers to try the channel, providing an opportunity to turn them into frequent, loyal pickup customers, while growing revenue.

3. Knowing when an order is ready for pickup remains most important to consumers

More than half (56%) of consumers continue to choose “Knowing when my order will be ready” as the most important factor when placing an Order for Pickup.

With the consumer desire for minimizing wait times and on-site risk driving shopping behavior, wanting certainty on order pickup times is not surprising. Consumers want the comfort of knowing they can quickly pick up an order without lingering on-site for too long and can adjust their schedule accordingly. 

4. Consumers trust grocers the most to keep them safe while picking up an order

We were also curious about a question not previously covered in our playbook. What types of merchants do consumers trust most to keep them safe once on-site: grocers, retailers, or restaurants?

Almost 47% of consumers chose Grocers as the channel they trusted most to keep them safe, followed by Restaurants (28%) and Retailers (25%).


It is clear that grocers (big and small) have evolved to meet the challenge of COVID-19 and earned consumer’s trust addressing their needs including:

  • A clear focus on contactless protocols such as adding online ordering, implementing social distancing protocols and providing newly designated resources to fulfill online orders
  • Adding a contactless curbside pickup experience 
  • Prioritizing designated parking spots, additional pick up time slots and improving the app experience

Consumers have made it clear— they are demanding a contactless Order for Pickup experience that meets their needs now and in the long-run. Failure by merchants to understand and prioritize what consumers want could impact sales and create long-term damage to their brand. So brands must understand, the Order for Pickup stakes are huge, with consumer demand not only on the rise but also very likely to drive growth for a long time. 

Rakuten is here to help you with Order for Pickup

At Rakuten Ready, as the leaders in predictive arrival technology, we focus on delivering a seamless, efficient, and safe contactless online Order for Pickup experience. Rakuten Ready has years of proven mobile Order for Pickup experience with brands of all sizes. Connect with us to understand how Rakuten Ready can assist your brand with planning, executing, and delivering data insights for a superior contactless Order for Pickup experience.

Learn more about Rakuten Ready