Argos has become the first high street retailer to offer same day delivery across the UK, up to 10pm, seven days a week, 364 days a year.
The new Argos store-based Fast Track home delivery service will be available to homes across the UK and has led to the creation of nearly 3,300 driver jobs, of which up to 1,000 are currently being recruited for the festive season.
There are four home delivery slots, priced at £3.95, on around 20,000 products available. Customers can order by 6pm to have their item(s) delivered by 10pm the same day.
The decision to launch the service in time for Christmas was strategic and will likely prove a success as retailers prepare for Black Friday.
“Argos led the way with click & collect 15 years ago – and customers can continue to shop with us in the traditional ways if they choose to,” said John Walden, Chief Executive of parent company Home Retail Group. “But we believe Fast Track is the next big innovation and brings shopping into the digital age for customers, allowing them to get up to 20,000 products in their hands faster than ever before. No other retailer can offer the breadth of products immediately or at that speed.”
“We can do this because we are a different type of retailer,” he added. “We know where every product is in our network and for customers who shop across digital channels – online and mobile - that means they can get what they want faster and with certainty. It’s the best of Argos coming together whether you choose to shop online or on the high street.
Also under the Fast Track service is a new national free-of-charge 60 second in-store collection offer, available across the 800-strong store network. Customers will see clearly when shopping online which products can be Fast Track-ed, and special Fast Track Collection counters have been created in-store for those who have pre-paid online for immediate pick up.
This is possible because Argos has a unique stock management system that identifies the availability and location of individual products. Customers can check stock, pay online, and their purchase will be ready at the collection counter when they come to pick it up and in their hands within 60 seconds of being served.
Bryan Roberts, Senior Vice-President & Knowledge Officer for EMEA at Kantar Retail, said: “Delivery has emerged as one of the key battlegrounds for UK retailers, as customers increasingly look for multiple delivery slots that allow them to shop how and when they want on the same day.
In terms of customers being able to order online as late as 6pm and receive products on their doorstep that evening, Argos is showing its rivals a clean pair of heels with this new speedy nationwide service. While having the right offer at the right price will be crucial as ever this Christmas, there will also be a sprint finish on the nation’s roads to deliver the goods the same or next day.”