There are a few retailers in the UK who are offering “qcommerce” (same day delivery)for non-food items.
I was prompted to post about this a case study presentation at the recent Retail Technology Show in London, and this is a slowly growing area for omnichannel retailers in more urban areas.
Key enabler is a “gig economy” delivery service (e.g. Deliveroo, Gophr, Quickup), and retailers who have stores over a wide area and don’t allow customer self-selection in store seem to have an advantage here.
- Pharmacy:–prescription and H&B. Not too surprising, food-adjacent. Several chains (and some independents) offer this, including Boots (the UK arm of Walgreens Boots Alliance)
- In the general merchandise space, Argos (an early pioneer). Their operating model in stores supports qcommerce as almost all items are picked for customers rather than self-selection, so rapidly picking an online order is a natural extension. Argos seem to do a lot of their own deliveries.
- Large scale rollout: Screwfix (part of Kingfisher group, who also trade as B&Q–i.e. like Home Depot), have now rolled out qcommerce offer (60 minutes) across hundreds of stores located in more urban areas. Screwfix started as a catalogue retailer selling Screws & Fixings to trade and DIY (who would have guessed). Trade counter operating model (not much stock available for self selection) IT evolution has resulted in a omnichannel solution which is dogmatically single view of stock, customer, order. Clear value proposition for trades contractors (£5 delivery with a low MOV vs. taking an hour to leave the site, potentially losing a parking space, and return later to complete the job is a no-brainer for tradesperson and their customers who often wind up paying the delivery charge as part of the bill). Rapidly expanding (Ireland and France).
Similar examples where you live?
Fun facts: Kingfisher is the surviving remnant of a larger group that owned UK Woolworths and white goods retailer Comet, both defunct, and attempted to take over Asda supermarkets but lost out to Walmart