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CASE STUDY How Wex Photo Video is managing its post-lockdown omni-channel strategy

Wex Photo Video Birmingham – ready for omni-channel post-lockdown

While many retailers went into lockdown needing to ramp up their online offering as their stores were forced to close, photographic specialist retailer Wex Photo Video faced the opposite problem: it was poised to open a new, 3000-square foot store at the start of April.


How it switched strategy mid-stream from opening stores to going back to being online-only – albeit temporarily – and how it plans to move forward into omni-channel in the new world of social distancing is a lesson to all retailers. So what did it do?

Founded originally as an online retailer, Wex Photo Video was quick to adapt to the lockdown situation and rapidly transformed its ecommerce operations over the past few weeks. Its comprehensive events programme evolved into a series of streamed webinars and workshops, and the company ensured its customer telephone and online support facilities were fully operational, with the warehouse remaining open to ship goods to customers throughout the period.

However, the business remains fully committed to its multichannel offering. Earlier this year before the pandemic emerged, Wex revealed an ambitious expansion strategy, starting with the relocation of its Birmingham showroom to larger premises in January, and the company is set to continue with its opening schedule.

Louis Wahl, chief executive officer at Wex Photo Video, is optimistic for 2020 and beyond. “The last few weeks have been challenging but we remain in a strong position,” Wahl says. “Online sales have held up well, thanks in part to spikes in demand across our product range, reflecting the changing habits of our customers in this period. During lockdown, photographers and filmmakers have been busy improving their skills, recording events and learning new techniques online, and we’ve been very happy to meet that demand.”

Wahl adds: “However, bricks-and-mortar stores are an essential part of our business and we’re committed to multichannel growth with the launch of our first high-street location in Milton Keynes. With our other shops finally set to reopen, we are looking forward to seeing footfall build as consumer confidence grows over the coming months. We will, of course, take measures to maintain the safety of our customers and colleagues at all times.”

Each of the Wex stores will be equipped to ensure they are ‘Covid-19 secure’, with appropriate processes in place for social distancing, store layout, restrictions on numbers of simultaneous customers and rigorous hygiene procedures. Sales staff will be provided with relevant PPE, in accordance with Government guidelines, ensuring a safe environment for both customers and employees.

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