From today, consumers at Gatwick's North Terminal can order Tesco groceries on the retailer's new interactive virtual store, which can then be freshly delivered to their homes on their return.
Combining virtual and interactive
This is the first time that Tesco has trialled the virtual store concept in the UK, but also the first time globally that it has combined the concept with interactive displays - the new virtual screens are designed to look like a fridge. By scanning the bar codes of the 80 products available, customers can simply add them to their virtual basket on their mobile and book a delivery slot for when they return home. Although only 80 products are available, by encouraging customers to shop using their mobiles, they will have access to Tesco's full online food range of 20k lines. The virtual store is being trialled during Gatwick's two busiest weeks of the year, from 6 - 19 August.
Building on learnings from South Korea
Tesco says that UK consumers will spend £4.5bn online this year, a two year growth of 584% and that by 2016, 90% of all mobiles in the UK will be smartphones. Although this is the first time that Tesco has trialled the virtual store in the UK, it has taken its learnings for the concept from South Korea; a virtual shopping wall was first launched on the Seoul subway in August 2011 and has since been rolled out to bus stops around the South Korean capital. The launch in South Korea generated 25 million online posts around the world and made the Tesco Homeplus app the most popular shopping app in the country.
Leading with digital and mobile innovation
Products on the virtual store include core staples such as milk, eggs, cheese, pasta, vegetables, cereal, bread and fruit. The concept that is supported by the slogan 'come home to a full fridge' shows how Tesco is committed to innovating with digital and mobile technology as a key part of its 2012 UK plan. Aiming to make a seamless transition for consumers across both online and offline services.
Ken Towle, Internet Retailing Director, commented, "Our business in Korea is teaching us a lot about how customers and technology are transforming shopping. It gives us a unique window into the future and the chance to try out exciting new concepts. The virtual store blends clicks and bricks, bringing together our love of browsing with the convenience of online shopping."
Better understand Tesco's online priorities
For an overview of Tesco's online strategy, what led to its hybrid online order picking model and what this means for your supply chain, please click here.
To see how Tesco believes online potential can be realised hear from Ian Crook, Chief Marketing Officer for Tesco.com, at IGD's online retailing conference on 17 October 2012 - for details click here