One of our most requested features is now part of Local Pickup Plus – you can now ask customers to choose a date and time for their pickup appointments! ???? This change makes it easier for store owners to plan and prepare to ensure orders are ready (and fresh, for all you bakers!) when customers arrive. 

Read on to learn more about how this update will improve your workflow!

Setting appointment duration

Prior to this release of Local Pickup Plus (version 2.7), customers could choose a day for their pickup appointment, but couldn’t specify the time. If you’re comfortable with that setup, no worries! This is still the default setting.

However, if you need customers to pick an appointment time, too, you can adjust the appointment duration setting. With this setting, you can choose to offer appointment times in 15-, 30-, or 60- minute intervals. In the example below, I’ve decided that my customers should book appointments in 30-minute intervals (e.g. at 9:00, 9:30, 10:00, etc.). 

The appointment duration setting in the Local Pickup Plus settings.

There are no limits on the number of customers that can choose the same appointment time, but the appointments available at checkout will vary based on your pickup settings:

  • Open hours. Your business hours and holiday settings determine when your locations are considered open. Customers can only choose appointment times that begin and end within a location’s open hours, based on your configured business hours and holidays.
  • Lead time and deadline settings. You can use lead time and deadline to control the earliest and latest times a customer can schedule an appointment. For example, if you sell cakes, you may set a four hour lead time to give you time to bake the cake and a two day deadline, since it won’t be fresh after that point. Customers can choose appointments that fall between your lead time and deadline requirements. 
  • Location-specific settings. You can configure the lead time, deadline, open hours, and holidays for your entire shop, but also set up exceptions for particular locations. That means that customers may see different appointment options based on their selected pick up location. 

Put simply, customers can choose any appointment slot that happens after the lead time, before the deadline, and during the selected location’s open hours. We’re excited to see how this improves checkout for your customers! 

Selecting appointments at checkout

Let’s step into the customer’s shoes and see how picking appointments at checkout works. Please keep in mind that the actual appearance will vary based on your site’s theme.

I’ve added a few tasty items to my cart and have decided to pick them up because I’m not too sure how well these items will ship. ???? I’ve also chosen a couple different locations, since this store allows pickup at multiple locations.

An order with products selected for local pickup at multiple locations.

Since I’ve chosen two locations, I need to pick two appointments. First, I’ll select the date. My options are limited based on lead time, deadline, and open hours for this location. 

The pickup appointment date selector for the first location.

Now, based on my selected date, I can choose an available appointment time. Appointment times are listed in the timezone for the selected location (EST in this case). 

The pickup appointment time selector for the first location.

You’ll see that the available dates for the second location are a bit different, because it has different open hours.

The pickup appointment date selector for the second location.

It’s the same with times, because The Hog’s Head is more of an afternoon spot.

The pickup appointment time selector for the second location.

I’ve chosen my appointments and placed my order. I have a record of my pickup appointments on the Order Received page, and I’ll receive the same information in the Order Received email.

The pickup dates and times for both locations on the Order Received page.

Finally, we’ll take a look at what scheduled pickups look like from the store owner’s perspective. 

Viewing upcoming appointments

When a customer places an order with a scheduled pickup appointment, there are three ways you can view that information:

  • In any order-related emails, such as the New Order email.
  • On the order detail page.
The pickup date and time in the order detail page in the WooCommerce admin.
  • If you’re using our Customer / Order / Coupon Export plugin, you can see the pickup location, date, and time on an order export. You can also run order exports by pickup location to keep track of appointments for particular locations. 

There’s also an option to view when customers are picking up orders using a new filter on the WooCommerce Orders page. The Pickup Dates filter lets you quickly see orders that are being picked up today, tomorrow, this week, or next week. As you saw in my previous example, orders can have multiple appointments, so orders will appear in every appropriate filter view based on the chosen appointments.

The pickup date filter in the WooCommerce Orders page.

With pickup appointment times, it’s easier for store owners to prepare products, plan their days, and staff locations based on when and where customers are picking up their orders. If you want to learn more about Local Pickup Plus, please read our documentation or get in touch with our support team

Published by Lindsey Fogle

Lindsey is a product manager at SkyVerge based out of Charlottesville, Virginia. When not sneaking Harry Potter references into SkyVerge docs, you’ll find her hiking up/skiing down a mountain or perfecting her homemade pizza.

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