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Tesco expected to launch digital services “imminently”

Caroline Baldwin

Tesco is expanding its multi-channel portfolio by launching a digital wallet in the coming months, with a number of other digital services also set to launch.

They will sit alongside Tesco’s other digital services including its magazine app, one-touch add-to-basket function and Click & Collect, to make up a “futuristic multichannel journey” for its customers.

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Scan as you Shop Mobile, Clubcard check-in and Clubcard voucher prompting are all in pilot mode at the moment.

Robin Terrell, group multichannel director, told a group of investors yesterday: “In 2014 these futuristic multichannel journeys are going to be a reality for customers.”

Tesco digital services

  • Real Food magazine app available on Hudl and other tablets LIVE
  • One-touch shopping add-to-basket function for recipes – LIVE
  • Click & Collect available at 232 locations and Click & Collect for general merchandise at 1,750– LIVE
  • Clubcard check in – a map app to find products in store when customers check- PILOT
  • Clubcard product prompting – where Tesco will send Clubcard coupons to customer mobiles – PILOT
  • Scan as you Shop Mobile for customers in-store who use their device to scan items as they go – PILOT
  • Tesco digital wallet to enable checkout purchase via mobile – LAUNCHING SOON
  • Receiving receipt to account – LAUNCHING SOON

As part of the Winning the New Era of Retail report, Terrell said customers who shop for food products in-store and online spend twice as much as those who shop online only. When adding general merchandise shopping online into the equation this figure trebled.

Currently just 4% of Tesco customers shop in all three ways, but the figure has grown 17% year-on-year.

“People often worry about cannibalization but that is fundamentally missing the point,” Terrell said. “The customer purchase journeys are becoming more complex, we no longer have that easy linear purchase journey, customers bounce between channels and devices in whichever way they choose and they expect a seamless experience.”

Tesco has the advantage of data generated by its Clubcard loyalty scheme which has 17m card holders in the UK and 43 million across the world. Behind the scheme sits the Tesco-owned customer science company Dunhumby, which has insights into 400 million households across the world.

Chief marketing officer Matt Atkinson told Computer Weekly last year that Clubcard made Tesco a “really good data business.”

The Tesco Clubcard was one of the first large-scale loyalty offerings in the UK and is almost 20 years old. Atkinson says that Clubcard makes Tesco really good at recognising its customer through the data that accumulates from what they buy in-store and online.

Atkinson said a multi-channel customer is worth twice as much as a single-channel customer and is much more loyal. “When you look at the analytics, they have stuff delivered at home, they click and collect and they go into the shop. And it’s as simple as that. If you serve them in a connected way they just do more of what they’re trying to do.”

The Clubcard loyalty scheme lends itself well in the mobile space. Atkinson said customers are likely to use coupons in different ways and journeys – planned, reactive, in-store, web and mobile. He says a mobile wallet combines everything you want in one place.


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