Everyone knows that click and collect is a hugely popular delivery option among shoppers, but it seems that some retailers have failed to adequately prepare for the Christmas rush.

Tesco has already suffered a fulfilment disaster after failing to deliver loads of Black Friday click and collect orders on time. 

On Friday it was displaying a banner notifying customers that due to “unprecedented demand” it was currently unable to provide next day click and collect deliveries.

Weirdly this was only the case for Tesco products, as “partner items are unaffected.”

But Tesco is only showing this notification on the click-and-collect information page.

On the Tesco Direct homepage the graphic is still offering free next day collection from every store, which is quite underhand really.

M&S has also been forced to withdraw its next-day in-store delivery service and deliveries to customers’ homes have also been delayed by up to two weeks.

According to the Guardian M&S’s new distribution centre failed to cope with the extra demand generated on Black Friday.

Its site has been updated to inform customers that the next-day click and collect service is unavailable, but still says: “Order by 5pm for delivery to your chosen store.”

Surely it doesn’t matter what time you place your order if next-day delivery isn’t an option?

Click and collect services are hugely important for the customer experience, particularly at this time of year, so it’s a major problem if retailers fail to deliver on promised delivery times.

Here’s a look at how other ecommerce retailers are promoting their click-and-collect delivery services.

Argos

Argos operates a hugely popular click and reserve service, but it isn’t currently making a big deal of it on its website.

The homepage carousel is promoting gift vouchers and a 70% sale on Christmas decorations, so shoppers are first made aware of click and collect option at the product pages.

John Lewis

John Lewis lists its delivery options at the bottom of the homepage, but you need to scroll down quite far to find it.

The free click & collect service is at the top of the list, which highlights its popularity among shoppers.

Click & collect is also mentioned on each of the category pages, with collection available from both John Lewis and selected Waitrose stores.

Homebase

Homebase also lists its delivery options low down on the homepage, with the top option being reserve & collect.

However this appears to be the usual homepage template so I don’t think Homebase is doing anything out of the ordinary here.

It doesn’t make any mention of delivery options on the category pages.

B&Q

Again B&Q mentions click & collect on its homepage but it appears to be part of the standard template rather than any particular effort to promote it over Christmas.

Matalan

Matalan has a standard click & collect promo at the top of its homepage, but a warning that deliveries are taking longer than normal appears lower down the page.

Debenhams

All of Debenhams’ various fulfilment options are displayed prominently on its homepage...

...but lower down the page there’s an update warning customers that some standard deliveries are running late. 

Waterstones

Click & collect is mentioned on the homepage, but it looks like a fairly standard template.

Evans Cycles

Evans Cycles has a homepage banner linking to its Christmas order dates.

This is really useful for shoppers as they can make a considered purchase without worrying whether the bike will arrive on time.

One of the slides in the carousel also links to the various delivery options, which includes a free click & collect option.

New Look

New Look has adopted the same approach as Evans Cycles. 

It lists the final Christmas order date for each of its UK stores which is useful but could have been improved by using a postcode lookup tool rather than making shoppers trawl through a giant list.

David Moth

Published 8 December, 2014 by David Moth

David Moth is Editor and Head of Social at Econsultancy. You can follow him on Twitter or connect via LinkedIn

1720 more posts from this author

You might be interested in

Comments (4)

Avatar-blank-50x50

sarah hughes, Director and Founder at Datitude Limited

Great round-up, David. I've come across a couple more...
It's not obvious, but John Lewis cannot satisfy all the demand for in-store collection across all of its estate, but they are managing it brilliantly. Impressive as ever, they are switching delivery to some of the smaller Waitrose stores off and on according to that store's capacity to handle the volume. Last week, there was no option to deliver to either of my two nearest Waitrose stores but I could chose the local John Lewis. Today, Waitrose is back in the game.
If you want to send a parcel, Collect Plus is advising customers that they may not be able to meet their delivery promises and are adding 3 days to their delivery times (same price, mind!).

about 3 years ago

Pete Austin

Pete Austin, CINO at Fresh Relevance

"Click and collect used by just 3% of grocery shoppers"
http://www.thegrocer.co.uk/home/topics/click-and-collect-used-by-just-3-of-grocery-shoppers/348994.article

That figure is much closer to my experience. Just look at the amount of the store given to conventional tills next time you visit a supermarket. I expect the issue is that shoppers are selective and use click-and-collect in a few cases, such as buying Christmas presents from Halfords.

about 3 years ago

Joe Tarragano

Joe Tarragano, Group Managing Director at Pentagon

Some of the retailers had more than double usual volume on Black Friday, compounded by the fact that some have 50-75% of their deliveries going click & collect. No surprise that the operations fell over. Whether they get the forecasting, automation, picking etc issues all sorted for Black Friday 2015 will be the true test of their teams, since I imagine a number of CEO's have sent the "Don't let this next year" email.

about 3 years ago

Pete Austin

Pete Austin, CINO at Fresh Relevance

Tesco weren't the only ones with problems: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-30444499

The courier firm, Yodel, has stopped collecting parcels from retailers as it struggles to deliver the huge jump in online orders following the so-called Black Friday sales. The company says some customers will face delays of up to 72 hours as it works to clear the backlog.

about 3 years ago

Comment
No-profile-pic
Save or Cancel
Daily_pulse_signup_wide

Enjoying this article?

Get more just like this, delivered to your inbox.

Keep up to date with the latest analysis, inspiration and learning from the Econsultancy blog with our free Digital Pulse newsletter. You will receive a hand-picked digest of the latest and greatest articles, as well as snippets of new market data, best practice guides and trends research.