Dark stores are traditional retail stores converted into local fulfilment centres. They come in the form of grocery stores, apparel and home goods retailers. These stores are not open for physical visit, and act as fulfilment and delivery centres for the orders placed through on-line mediums.
Because of falling sales, negative profits and stockpiling, some stores are just trying to survive. Dark stores concept can help generate revenue and rotate stock. It is an opportunity to exploit the changing consumer behaviour of online-buying and deliver the goods to them since they cannot visit the store because of Covid-19. If your business is suitable for dark stores, then you can bounce back and continue the momentum even post Covid-19. The experts say dark stores are here to stay.
Just keep in mind. The dark stores may not be right for all retailers, so assess the feasibility. Setting up or transitioning to a dark store involves investing in technologies, infrastructure, physical space and retraining the staff.
A suitable location or a neighbourhood, right layout of the store, effective inventory planning, order management software, data analytics, setting up of an online-store, partnering with delivery vendors and digital intervention will play an important role in transitioning to a dark store.
This pandemic has taught us one thing- to stay relevant and stay ahead of competition, we have to innovate consistently and adapt quickly.
We have been helping companies move online and exploit digital. I will be happy to discuss how we can help transform your store digitally.