This week Square introduced preorder and pick-up services. On the surface this service should help expand the business opportunities for small businesses. It might also help level the playing field for small businesses that compete against multi-channel retailers who currently offer similar services.
The offering is borne out of the increasingly blurring lines between digital and analog commerce. Once well separated and siloed retail channels, online and brick-and-mortar are continuing to come together such that consumers can toggle seamlessly between the two.
The service also introduces some interesting questions – namely which sectors are most likely to take advantage of the service. I haven’t seen any data that provides a distribution of square users, but personal observation is that a fair amount of taxis utilize square. Coincidentally, a digital preorder-like service fits their business model quite well.