Tuesday 13 December 2011

John Lewis opens its first virtual shop in Brighton

All of the retailer's ‘top 30 things to buy for Christmas’ are included in a QR window display at a branch of Waitrose.
Customers can scan the QR code of the item they want, which will then take them to the John Lewis mobile site to complete their purchase.
After ordering online, customers can pick the item up after 2pm the following day from any John Lewis or participating Waitrose store, if the order is place before 7pm the previous day.
The most famous, and possibly most successful, example was Tesco Korea's virtual supermarket shelf in a subway in Korea, which resulted in a 130% increase in online sales.
The issue will be what KPIs JLP will use to measure success before rollout:
-       Sales per item listed (need to segregate window vs. website sales)
-       Sales per window (aggregation of above)
-       Opportunity cost of window space (Waitrose tends to use blanked-out windows in this location)
This raises several issues:
-       Is it a poster?
-       Is it a ‘shop’?
-       Is it a calalogue?
Either way a worthwhile experiment, but meanwhile a possible temporary/permanent answer to all of those empty windows in the high street?
And the space behind the empty windows?
How about using this now low rent, minimal/zero rates space as back-up storage for healthy shops nearby, thus allowing them to eliminate all instore storage space in in high-cost rental areas?

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