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M&S partners with Doddle for easier click-and-collect returns

Retailer is using Powered by Doddle on its in-store devices to allow returns of online items, as well as the use of click-and-collect services

Marks and Spencer (M&S) is working with Doddle to make it easier for customers to return goods ordered from M& to its Simply Food stores.

The retailer is using Powered by Doddle on its in-store devices to allow returns of online items, as well as the use of click-and-collect services, in hundreds more of its physical stores than was possible before.

Because M&S is using its existing devices, the new service has not required much additional resource.

Richard Pugh, head of M& logistics and returns, said the service is something customers have been demanding, and has allowed the retailer to give its customers a more “consistent” experience, regardless of the type of store they visit.

“Doddle delivered a solution that put our customers at the heart, while providing our carrier partners with more visibility to work efficiently, and supported store colleagues to deliver brilliant customer service,” he said. “We are now better equipped to provide customers with quick and easy returns and refunds.”

As consumer behaviour shifts towards an online-heavy mix of digital shopping and in-store visits, customers are expecting a more seamless experience across all retail channels.

There is also a trend towards convenience shopping as consumers shop online and expect next-day delivery or collection from a location that reflects their lifestyle.

Doddle’s Powered by Doddle platform helps retailers do this by allowing them to customise their version of the technology to match their needs, and roll it out across their brand.

The M&S adoption was trialled in seven locations over the past year, and will now be available in 280 Simply Food stores and will expand to more in due course.

Consumers are more likely to be loyal to brands that give them a good experience, or brands that are using technology to make people’s lives more convenient. Some 85% of customers who have used the service since it was introduced said they were more likely to order online more frequently, and 97% said they would use the service again.

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M&S has made a number of digital and technology-based moves in recent months, initially announcing that it would close up to 100 stores by 2022 to accelerate its business transformation with the aim of matching digital customer behaviour.

It went on to say it hoped to upgrade the supply chain across its clothing, home and goods ranges, as well as improve its slow online presence.

Most recently, the retailer announced partnerships with Decoded to teach its staff data skills, and with Founders Factory to invest in retail technology startups and gain access to Founders Factory’s pool of entrepreneurs.

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