Asda freezes plans for At Home roll-out

Asda has halted the roll-out of its Asda At Home shopping service until its key performance criteria are met.

The Wal-Mart-controlled grocer trails behind Tesco and Sainsbury's in the e-tail league, but said there are no plans to roll out its service to more stores at the moment.

At present, Asda picks from 32 stores after abandoning its warehouse fulfilment model earlier this year.

Asda At Home is able to cater for approximately a third of the population, but lags behind, which can serve 90 per cent, and Sainsbury's To You, which has 74 per cent coverage.

Web monitor Hitwise says Tesco has 30.5 per cent of food e-tail traffic, Sainsbury's 20.3 per cent and Asda 10.6 per cent.

Asda retail development director Angela Spindler said: 'We want to perfect the model first. We will review (home shopping) when we get there. We are focused on achieving operational excellence and have set profitability targets as well as service standards. We want to get all our [32] stores up to the same rate.'

Asda has invested in its home shopping arm this year and doubled the range available to 12,000 lines in the summer. The grocer also launched its service on the Sky Active digital TV platform.

Separately, Spindler said that the implementation of Wal-Mart systems in Asda stores has resulted in a reduction in queues at the checkout of 60 per cent and has improved on-shelf availability by 35 per cent.

Availability on shelf is now approximately 98 per cent, but Spindler said that improvement remains a priority.