Tuesday 7 January 2014

Online Betting via Grocery Dark Stores

Whilst grocers are cutting back on megastores, rising internet food sales will see supermarkets sign up for twice as much online warehouse space in 2014.

Tesco, Asda and Waitrose will this year commit to doubling the space devoted to internet dark stores, according to property agent Jones Lang LaSalle. Around 1.8m sq. ft. of warehouse space is devoted to dark stores, but that is set to increase as online shopping transforms the retail sector.

Tesco is expected to open its seventh dark store in Didcot, Oxfordshire, later this year. They opened two dark stores in 2013 and have previously said they are scouting for further sites in Birmingham and Manchester. Their newest centre in Erith, south east London, can process 4,000 orders a day and offer 30,000 different items, 50% more than the average store. The site has also been designed to help Tesco launch same-day deliveries, a service already offered by Asda and Ocado.

The combination of faster picking, more delivery slots and increased use of ‘click & collect’ means acceleration of online growth, mainly at the expense of less efficient competition.

However, faster online supply of goods – especially bulky items – has to also accelerate the redundancy of large space retailing, and given that there are no obvious alternative use options – i.e. selloff- available, then the major retailers will seek to optimise available space via a combination of instore theatre and franchising.

Providing the numbers add up, this new availability of space has to represent a major opportunity for suppliers and retailers to fundamentally re-think the application of shopper marketing, a process conceived at a time when retail space was at a premium….

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