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Rapid Rise in Online Orders Reported by Waitrose

17 June 2020 - 12:51 by Graham Miller

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Supermarket firm Waitrose has been one of a number of retailers to experience a significant increase in the volume of orders being placed via safe shopping online, with its e-commerce activity doubling in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic and the subsequent enforcement of lockdown across the UK.

This is all the more important for Waitrose in particular, since it is approaching the point at which it will end its collaboration with grocery delivery company Ocado and instead take charge of its own online operations for the first time later this year.

The move to handling online deliveries in-house will allow it to serve more customers and make use of more of its bricks and mortar stores to act as distribution hubs.

Furthermore, Waitrose revealed that the impact of the coronavirus had allowed it to serve more than 150,000 customers with online deliveries in a single seven-day period, a milestone that it had not been likely to hit in normal circumstances.

Also announced this week was the news that the retailer is expanding its fleet of delivery vehicles with vans that are more eco-friendly than existing LCVs while also being able to operate without creating as much noise, which is good news for customers and their neighbours receiving deliveries at home late at night or early in the morning.

Company spokesperson Ben Stimson told Internet Retailing that it was thanks to Waitrose’s careful planning and its shift to a focus on e-commerce that it had been capable of accommodating the uptick in online orders seen over the past few months.

Around a tenth of grocery orders are now carried out online due to COVID-19, and this figure could continue to rise as consumers get used to using the services offered by Waitrose and its rivals.