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EDITORIAL How retailers are retooling around the way shoppers now want to buy

Image: Vlad Kochelaevskiy/Shutterstock

In today’s InternetRetailing newsletter we’re reporting as retail – and retailers – change shape and invest in the services they’ll need for the future – in response to changing customer behaviour. The shift online that was already well underway has been accelerated as a result of Covid-19 – requiring companies to reconsider what now works in retail, and how to support that development in future.

Screwfix is opening a sixth distribution centre, operated by Wincanton, to support its fast expansion as it opens more stores and increases its turnover. The retailer has built a strong multichannel model around offering fast click and collect and online delivery from its stores. Recent innovations have included Screwfix Sprint, its one-hour delivery service available only through its mobile app.

Magnetic wave powered parcel delivery network Magway is looking to green investors for its next round of funding as it expands towards commercial use. The company says that it is will offer a delivery solution that can help reduce carbon emissions by running deliveries through pipes rather than lorries and delivery vans.

And we assess the effect that the shift online has had both on the UK’s store numbers, particularly fashion shops, and on retail jobs. More than 10,000 shops closed – net of openings – over the last year, according to new research from PwC and the Local Data Company in a realignment of the industry that has been driven by the shift online. The good news is that the research considers this realignment may well be close to completion.

We explore the logistics crunch that has hit retail supply chains in recent months and look ahead to what happens next, in a feature from the latest RetailX UK Top500 2022. And we consider the trends driving the UK furniture market online and across channels in analysis drawn from the RetailX Furniture report.

In today’s guest comment, Nate Holmes of Widen considers what brands need to do to ‘win’ the digital shelf.

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