Eight months into Argos’ five-year transformation plan to overhaul its business model for the digital era, Retail Week takes a look at how they’ve done so far.

Eight months into Argos’ five-year transformation plan to overhaul its business model for the digital era, Retail Week takes a look at how they’ve done so far.

  • The general merchandise retailer relaunched its website in October to provide improved functionality, searchability, look and feel. The revamp included the introduction of the ‘1-click Check & Reserve’ service, improving the speed and convenience of reserving products for store collection.
  • An improved mobile site and an iPad tablet app were launched just before Christmas.
  • Trials began in January to test its new ‘hub and spoke’ distribution model, which utilises existing Argos stores network and replenishment capabilities in an effort to offer “market leading immediacy of fulfilment on a wider range of products”.
  • In January, trials of a different Argos catalogue format in the North East of England commenced, offering a reduced number of product lines, combined with extended product ranges available online for both immediate and next-day store collection.
  • Plans to grow its multichannel business have come to fruition with multichannel sales now representing 51%, or £2bn, of Argos’ total sales - up from 48% the year before. 
  • Its range of tablet computers has been expanded with new devices from Apple, Samsung, Asus and Google. Children’s tablet devices from LeapPad and Vtech have also been a strong contributor to growth.
  • During the 2013/14 financial year, Argos says it will develop a digital catalogue with the first one launching before Christmas. A number of store trials will also start, including web-based browsers replacing catalogues, the introduction of Wi-fi to enable customers to use their smartphones and tablets in stores, and a new fast track collection service for goods purchased online or via a mobile device.