South African online retailer takealot.com has launched more than 25 Takealot Pickup Point collection facilities across the country, with the flagship facility at the New Road offramp, in Midrand, officially unveiled on Friday.
The facilities are used for the pickup of both Takealot and Superbalist’s products.
A further 25 Takealot Pickup Points are also in the pipeline.
Speaking at the unveiling of the Midrand facility, Takealot CEO Kim Reid noted that Pickup Points have always been a part of the company’s offering, as a supplementary dimension.
He indicated that customers prefer alternatives to delivery and having specified locations for both collection and returns at a time convenient for them as an added benefit, as they are not always at home or in the office to receive their deliveries.
Therefore, he indicated that a pickup point provides a safe, alternative option for customers.
The company’s first pickup facility at Takealot’s Cape Town warehouse, which has been in operation for the past eight years, sees an average of 1 000 orders collected daily.
With the pickup points, the company expects to convert about 10% of its Takealot and Superbalist orders in the greater Johannesburg area to customer collections rather than deliveries to customers.
The Midrand facility, which is also the company’s biggest, spans the N1 highway, and is accessible from both onramps, allowing motorists travelling both north- and southbound to easily collect their orders.
The newly renovated, 1 177 m2 facility will use a mix of technology and automation – including a spiral conveyor belt – to ensure shoppers are able to collect their orders as quickly as possible.
Customers can also drop off their returns at any pickup point instead of arranging for collection by a Takealot driver.
Takealot will assess the traffic and shopping fluctuations at the Midrand facility and adjust its operating hours accordingly over time, to cater to customer needs.
The current operating hours are 06:00 to 20:00 on weekdays and 08:00 to 17:00 on weekends.
Reid indicated that Takealot’s initial expectations for the Midrand facility are around 1 200 orders being collected a day.
The facility is ultimately designed to support more than 7 000 collections a day for Takealot and Superbalist collectively. “It’s an advanced customised warehouse management system that can cope with large volumes of collections quickly.”
The facility employs upwards of 20 people.
Bomax Architects was the architect for this project.
When checking out, Takealot customers can now select from a number of pickup points across the Western Cape, Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, Mpumalanga and the Eastern Cape.