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Argos, Sainsbury’s and Amazon: putting our assumptions to the test

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In today’s Internet Retailing newsletter we report how retailers are testing commonly-held assumptions in the way we do business. Leading multichannel retailers generally sell from their own shops – but Argos is testing whether that needs to be the case in a tie-up with Sainsbury’s that will see it sell through 10 digital stores inside the supermarket’s own stores.

Then, we understand that customers do spend more when they join subscription schemes, but those schemes generally cost a nominal amount to join. The retailer subsidises the scheme in return for customer loyalty. Amazon put that to the test when it hiked the cost of its Prime subscriptions. Now it’s reporting a rise in sales, and in Prime member numbers.

For both retailers, of course, this testing of received wisdom is nothing new. It’s by doing just that that they’ve built up such strong positions in an omnichannel world. Others, no doubt, will be watching and learning from their approach. Those retailers will also be able to learn to challenge assumptions in the Mobile Conference at IRX 2015. Today we bring a preview of that event and its speakers.

Today we also have news from Ocado, as it announces a fourth distribution centre, and of Monsoon and The Works as they put new technology to work to improve the customer experience. Our guest comment today is from Adestra’s Jennifer Watkiss, who takes the temperature of the retail industry and how it’s performing on email marketing.

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