Micro-shopping trips get bigger

Brought to you by Retail Insider and K3 Retail

Regardless of whether it is driven by the increasingly time poor characteristic of most people or simply their growing impatience we are moving into the era of the ‘micro shopping’ trip that is defined as taking less than five minutes.

The trend is being further fuelled by the emergence of in-store services linked to online orders – such as click & collect and Amazon lockers – whereby shoppers diving in to collect items cannot resist picking up the odd other items from in-store. The quicker they are able to collect their order the better as the more additional revenue can then be potentially generated.


Evidence of how such services can juice the micro-shopping phenomenon comes from Amazon where such trips rose by 11% at Whole Foods Market stores where it had installed lockers. This compares to the 7% growth seen at outlets without lockers – a still significant number for sure.

To power this activity Asda has been trialing click & collect Towers – following their successful roll out in the US at parent company Wal-Mart – that enable goods ordered online to be collected in less than 60 seconds, and also returned. They operate like giant vending machines with customers entering a code before they can access their items.

In the US, supermarket chain Kroger is introducing ClickList that enables users to quickly retrieve their orders at designated drive-thru areas. It is a similar story at Target that has implemented a micro-parking service, Target Drives Up, which is an app-enabled solution whereby ordered items can be brought directly to the customers’ car within two minutes. This gives them enough time to pop into the store and manage their micro-shopping trip.

Such speedy activity in-store requires retailers to adapt their outlets to make the sub five-minute shopping trip possible. In-roads have been made over recent years to have grab-and-go items available at the entrance of stores but this is clearly an area where further thought will be needed.

The days of people lazily browsing the grocery aisles are far from over but retailers now have to factor in the growing appetite for the micro-shopping trip.

Glynn Davis, editor of Retail Insider

K3 Retail partners with businesses to provide connected technologies based on Microsoft Dynamics 365 so retailers can reach their goals now and in the future. In a size that best fits future plans wherever you need it – Cloud, Hybrid or On-premise. Our solutions drive more than 800 international retail brands from Charles Tyrwhitt and The White Company to Ryman and Sue Ryder, Hobbycraft, Wasabi and Ted Baker, K3 Retail is a Microsoft Gold Certified Partner and the UK’s leading Microsoft Dynamics retail partner.