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Why a transformational year means very different things to Ocado and Mothercare

Retailers are changing the way they sell as they work to meet the needs of the modern customer

In today’s InternetRetailing newsletter, we report as Ocado chief executive Tim Steiner says the latest half-year has been a transformational one for the retailer as it sells its technology to retailers around the world and also sees its own online grocery sales rising. 

It’s been a transformational year in a very different way for Mothercare: we cover the nursery retailer plans to close 60 stores, and almost halve the size of its store estate as it seeks to continue its four-year quest towards digital-first retailing. 

Long-term Mothercare is suffering from the fall in offline shopping for non-food products, while Ocado is benefiting from growth in grocery sales, as spelt out in today’s KPMG-BRC eRetail Sales Index for June. But it’s more than that. Ocado is also benefiting from the investment it’s made in the future of shopping, what it today terms a change in the way the world shops, rather than than staying with how we used to buy. Mothercare, meanwhile, has said that its own transformation has been too slow – it’s stayed for too long with how we used to shop and is suffering as the pace of change accelerates. 

This year is proving one of transformation for many, both large and small. Today we report on just a few more instances of that, with Vodafone unveiling its first IoT-ready wearable products, and CollectPlus unveiling an Amazon Alexa integration for organising returns via voice. 

Today’s guest comment comes from Alan Walsh of Amido who considers how identity-driven and agile retailers can boost customer loyalty. 


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