Buy online, pick up in store, or BOPIS, has taken off during the pandemic. Retailers with the necessary store count and resources have scaled their delivery alternatives accordingly, and it is paying off. Online retailers who are more dependent on shipping services are searching for ways to cope with the deluge of holiday orders and the resulting shipping delays. Amazon in particular is encouraging customers to use Amazon Hub pickup, which relies in part on other retailers' stores to act as pickup points, or one of Amazon's branded stores, whether 4-star or Amazon Books, as alternatives to home delivery. Though Amazon was one of the pandemic's retail "winners," the volume of demand is forcing the online giant to compensate for its small store fleet.
...with a dearth of stores compared to other retailers (578, with most of those within its Whole Foods grocery chain) and with time running out, Amazon now may be at something of a disadvantage.