John Lewis has broken new ground by extending its Never Knowingly Undersold price-matching policy to its website.

The pledge, which has been in place at the department store chain for 85 years, now covers all product categories on, including cosmetics, fashion, home, toys, furniture and electricals, giving a consistent promise to shoppers across all its channels. The pledge will apply only to other ‘bricks and clicks’ retailers and not to pure-plays, such as Amazon.

John Lewis managing director Andy Street said: “We think this is a really decisive move. We have been getting progressively nearer to [introducing the pledge online]. This is the last step.”

Michael Ross, the Figleaves founder who now runs ecommerce services provider eCommera, said the move was a “significant step” and it would have “a major impact”.

He said: “On the one hand, many pure-players will be pricing lower than John Lewis, but on the other it’s a strong signal of trust.

“There’s a tension between whether they go out to have the best headline price or do they set a John Lewis price.”

The initiative is expected to be felt particularly by rivals in electricals. Street said it “puts us straight up against Kesa and Dixons Retail”.