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B&Q and Wickes both pave the way for multichannel growth

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Both B&Q and Wickes have been talking up their multichannel plans this week. DIY market leader B&Q has announced plans to invest £35m in updating its web site, introducing an integrated platform that will streamline multichannel operations. It’s expected that the new site at, and integrated back office systems will be fully operational by 2013. There are also plans to launch a mobile transactional site by the end of 2011, tapping into the needs of diy-ers and tradesmen ‘on the go’.

B&Q and Kingfisher UK chief executive Euan Sutherland has said the investment aims to deliver the right multichannel experience for customers’ lifestyles.

Meanwhile Wickes, part the Travis Perkins group, which also owns Tile Giant and ToolStation, has seen the value of its online sales increase by 70% in the last year, following improvements to its online service offer, and a focus on getting large items such as cement, timber and paving slabs to customers quickly. Next day delivery of bulky items was introduced last year, and the bathroom range available online was extended. Sales and market share have increased “significantly” since then, said Wickes. The company is also working on integrating store and online systems, and building the infrastructure necessary to develop its multichannel offer further.

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