UK retailer Argos has launched its Christmas Gift Guide in a digital format, making it available on the iPad and iPad 2 for the first time.
The digital gift guide is the retailer’s first foray into the burgeoning tablet market and will provide customers with over £100 million of Christmas savings.
Free to download from iTunes, the app allows users to browse more than 3,400 products, check live pricing and stock information and Check & Reserve any item for pick-up from any of the retailer’s 750 stores nationwide.
The existing Argos shopping app has already been downloaded 1.7 million times, while mobile transactions represent four per cent of the company’s sales, a figure that is set to grow further following the latest development.
Last month, Argos owner Home Retail Group, which also owns DIY & homeware retailer Homebase, warned of the prospect of slow Christmas trading following plummeting sales over its first half.
Profit before tax dropped from £103 million in the first half of 2010 to just £29.4 million in the 26 weeks to August 28th 2011, a decline of 75 per cent.
Argos’s toys and gift prices in the latest festive guide have already been lowered to offer customers £100 million of savings compared to the autumn/winter catalogue, with further reductions expected between now and Christmas.
The retailer is maintaining its focus on building a multichannel presence, with the app guide featuring a Christmas wish list creator, videos, customer reviews and the ability to share products via social networking sites.
Karen MacLachlan, Marketing Director at Argos, pointed out that, while increasing digital interaction and offers was important to the company, value remains its primary focus.
“With family budgets tight we know it’s going to be a tough Christmas for many consumers and we’re committed to offering the right price on the products they want,” she commented.
“With over £100 million extra in their pockets and the broadest range of products, this new digital gift guide is leading the way in the market by giving customers instant access to up-to-the-minute pricing.”