House of Fraser will launch a new delivery option within the next three weeks that will allow customers to receive deliveries before 9am.
Making the announcement at today’s Internet Retailing conference in London, HoF’s executive director of multichannel, Andy Harding, said he believed the business to be “ahead of everyone else in the market in terms of delivery”.
The new delivery option will allow any orders made by 8pm to be delivered by 9am the following morning. HoF also offers a nationwide, seven day a week delivery service, which allows customers to order up until midnight and get it the next evening. Harding said the multitude of delivery options offered by HoF differentiated it from everyone else in the market.
Harding said click-and-collect was proving extremely popular with customers, which is what led to the business partnering with Café Nero for its “buy and collect” service, the first of which opened on Monday in Cambridge.
During the presentation Harding discussed the “customer centric” strategy of the business and said its “Voice of the Customer” framework allowed it to think about what customers are doing, what they are going to do and what they want to do.
Looking at changing shopping behaviours, Harding said “the more you get your customer to take their phone out of their pocket in store, the more likely they are to spend with you”. He said the HoF app, which detects when customers are in store, is the bridge between online and bricks and mortar retail.
Looking ahead to future innovation, Harding stated HoF “doesn’t do gimmicks” and would only invest in “rational innovation”. He said everything must have a business case, a recent example being the trial and following roll-out of iBeacons in store.
Harding also stated that mobile payments are imminent, saying: “We will see a significant shift from credit card to mobile payments within the next two years.”
Harding finished his presentation with a video showing new technology, including Oculus Rift virtual reality headsets, which he believes could have a huge impact on retail in the future. He said: “This technology is totally immersive. Think of (online virtual world) SecondLife and why it died – it was before its time. But think about retail experiences of the future as an avatar of yourself seeing all of the brands you love. I really do think it will be part of the future – and if customers want it, we will build it.”