Tulip, a cloud-based retail technology company, debuted Fulfillment, a tool which lets retailers manage, track and deliver online orders directly from their stores, the startup announced on Wednesday.
Retailers can use Fulfillment to offer BOPIS; ship from store; reserve online, pick up in store; and curbside pickup. The technology also allows store associates to oversee the workflow, manage inventory status and reports, and provide shopping support, according to a company press release.
To connect retailers with customers in a more virtual COVID-19 environment, the company is also developing new tools like video chat, remote pay and appointments.
The COVID-19 pandemic has revealed the headaches of e-commerce, including the environmental impact and extra shipping costs. In response, multiple retailers, including Best Buy, Nordstrom, At Home, PetSmart and Sam's Club, have introduced or modified their delivery and pickup options to adjust to serve customers safely. Meanwhile, other retailers like Home Depot and Walmart have retooled their fulfillment procedures to keep up with demand.
For retailers trying to manage fulfillment options, Tulip's application can integrate with current retail systems and was designed with API in mind, the company noted.
"The ability to fulfill and reserve orders from the store is a key requirement for next-generation retailers," Ali Asaria, Tulip's CEO, said in a statement. "This app is a key part of our goal of building an end-to-end platform to empower retailers looking to enable next-generation omnichannel stores."
As the pandemic persists, shipping from stores has become a useful option for retailers with a large brick-and-mortar footprint, but it remains to be seen whether shipping from stores will make sense in the long term. The pandemic has illustrated the need for retailers to be agile in preparation for future crises.