Online move

Primark unveils click & collect trial in online move

Primark has had a positive response to website (pic: Terry Murden)

Primark is launching a click and collect trial in 25 stores in the northwest of England.

Parent company Associated British Foods said there had been a “positive customer reaction” to the April launch of Primark’s new website in the UK which showcases many more products and offers stock availability by store.

To date, traffic to the new site is up by around 60%, customers on average are viewing twice as many pages per session, and almost 15% of visitors to the site are using the new stock checker facility.

“We now plan to enhance the customer journey even further with the UK launch of a trial Click & Collect service towards the end of this calendar year,” it said in a trading update showing sales in the quarter ending 28 May were 4% higher than the comparable pre-COVID period three years ago.”

It said the trial will focus on its children’s range of clothing, accessories and nursery furniture.

“The expansion of the offering will be particularly attractive for our customers who do not regularly shop in our larger stores. Our average size stores are only able to stock a limited range and for these customers the number of options available to them will broadly double, increasing even more for customers of our small stores.

“This trial will enable us to provide more fashion, licence and lifestyle products to more customers and more often. In store collection will be available from designated areas, designed to be welcoming and situated in the heart of the store.”

Click & Collect orders will be processed and dispatched to store from a dedicated UK distribution centre.

Russ Mould, investment director at AJ Bell says: “The big takeaway from Associated British Foods’ latest update is the news that its retail chain Primark is trialling a click and collect service.

“Primark has long been a bit of an outlier on the high street for having no online transactional services.

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“Its argument has always been that the economics of online deliveries and returns wouldn’t stack up at its price point and for its product range.

“Given the big costs facing web-only retail at present, this argument carries more weight than ever. Primark has also relied on lots of impulse purchases in store which might be difficult to replicate online. But click and collect, which is being trialled on children’s wares in the North-West, could be a useful halfway house for the business.

“It means people can shop at their convenience at home but will still come through the doors of a Primark to collect their purchase and potentially make some incremental buys along the way.”

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