UK retailers leave US behind in click and collect race

UK retailers are storming ahead in providing click and collect services for consumers

UK retailers are storming ahead in the provision of click and collect services for consumers.

Compared with US retailers, those in the UK are more widely able to offer click and collect services as part of their omni-channel strategies because of the UK's condensed geography.

While attending the Demandware Xchange event in Miami this week, Peter Sheldon, vice-president and principle analyst for commerce technology at Forrester, told Computer Weekly the UK market is further ahead than the US in delivering a service where consumers buy items online and pick them up in-store.

“The UK has been doing click and collect for a long time and the service is mature in the UK,” he said. “The US has different challenges.”

The number of UK shoppers using click and collect is set to more than double in the next three years, according to research from Planet Retail. The research found that 35% of online shoppers in the UK buy online and collect from store, compared with 13% in the US and 5% in Germany. By 2017, 76% of UK shoppers are expected to use the service, it said.

Alex Alexander, multi-channel technology director at Asda, told Computer Weekly the supermarket had implemented a number of delivery options for its customers in the past year, including next-day delivery and click and collect.

He said Asda, which is a subsidiary of the US retail company Walmart, works with the US giant to share technology innovation and ideas.

“In the UK, there are some things we’re the market leader at, including click and collect and same-day/next-day delivery. The US doesn’t have the same propositions due to its geography, but it’s expected in the UK,” said Alexander.

He said Walmart is interested in taking advantage of Asda’s click and collect strategy.

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