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Comment: Poundworld should not lose its focus

Ahead of the opening of Poundworld's online website, David Lowrence, Retail Client Engagement Manager at Fujitsu UK & Ireland adds a note of caution.

GENERAL MERCHANDISE

Comment: Poundworld should not lose its focus

Poundworld’s online launch highlights how the high street has transformed into a channel, where digital and mobile platforms lead the way, with consumers now going online rather than heading to their local high street due to the growing number of mobile devices and online channels now available. Poundworld knows its customers best.

If it believes that a 20 item basket is achievable, then this is a good move. However the retailer should bear in mind that running a transactional web (e-commerce ) may not be as cost beneficial as expected, as many outwardly successful retailers are discovering.

With Poundworld only allowing a minimum order of £10, and charging a £3.65 delivery charge, it could be said that this retailer is cutting across its brand values. These factors will be taking products out of the £1 price zone, which may deter consumers to shop online, who could easily just pay £1 for the items in the physical stores. Some of Poundworld’s normal customer base also may not be as tech savvy as other consumers, and because of this shopping online will not be appealing to some customers.

This can be a challenge for many bargain businesses today. Although Poundworld is considering starting a “Click and Collect” service, “clicks” have not quite replaced “bricks”. Fujitsu’s recent Pan European Retail Survey revealed that 65% of retailers believe the importance of stores is increasing significantly within Europe. Because of this, it is important for bargain stores, such as Poundworld, to ensure that they do not lose focus on their physical stores, to ensure that customers can choose the shopping experience most suited to them.

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