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EDITORIAL From Argos to Pandora: shaping omnichannel strategies around customers’ needs

Argos is combining voice commerce with click and collect

In today’s InternetRetailing newsletter, we’re reporting as Argos brings its latest innovation to the market. Its version of voice commerce, that growing market that is expected to top £3.5bn soon, combines click and collect with voice. Argos is betting here that click and collect is a more useful function for many shoppers than home delivery, and perhaps with good reason – it says 80% of its online orders are collected in store. The service currently appears to be unique, and looks set to give Argos a head start among those shoppers who would rather pick up than wait in. We see this as a great example of a retailer adapting its strategy to the specific needs of its customers, and we’ll be watching with interest to see how customers respond.

That’s a theme echoed in InternetRetailing Europe editor’s Alex Sword’s wide-ranging interview with Pandora’s chief digital officer Karl Walsh, who talks about why omnichannel should be a natural evolution for retailers. “You’ll never hear the store talked about separately to the online experience,” he says, adding: “We need to be where the consumer wants to be, when they want to be there.”

That, of course, will be different for all retailers: today we report on footfall data that appears to confirm back to school is emerging as a peak retail event. There are important insights for those retailers selling in back to school categories from uniform and shoes to bags and stationery who are planning their strategies for the year ahead.

We also report on what IRUK Top500 retailers Dixons Carphone, Gear4Music and Quiz said this week about their multichannel strategies – the first on how online sales are account for more of its business, the second on how its sales are growing fast, although growing competition is denting its short-term profits, and the latter on the cost of House of Fraser’s administration to its business.

Today’s guest comment comes from Scott Hanson of Pimberley, who offers four ways that retailers can make or break shoppers’ online experience. We report, too, on the eCommerce Show North and the Northern eCommerce Awards.

RetailCraft podcast

Find out more about the first two episodes of InternetRetailing’s RetailCraft podcasts featuring Heals and the Rug Company.

RetailCraft 01 – David Kohn of Heals – “probably the most sceptical man in the industry”? Surely not!

RetailCraft 02 – Sarah Stagg of The Rug Company and the 2018 IREU Top500


Find out more about upcoming InternetRetailing webinars and register for free on the InternetRetailing webinar page. You can also catch up with past webinars on the page.

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