M&S TO ROLL OUT NEW DIGITAL CLICK & COLLECT MODEL AND ACCELERATED CUSTOMER RETURNS PROCESS
- Digital Check-In & Self-Service Returns to roll out to 78 stores this year. Currently being trialled at 22 stores.
- Increasing numbers of M&S.com customers are choosing to shop through Click & Collect, with usage up consistently year-on-year.
- M&S also launching new, mobile-friendly customer returns journey, cutting average returns time by 60%.
M&S is today announcing the rollout of a new and improved digital Click & Collect and returns journey for customers in-store, making it easier and more efficient for customers to shop with M&S.
Launching in 78 stores this year, the rollout includes a new self-service digital click & collect and returns facility, alongside the launch of a new mobile-friendly paperless returns process.
Click & Collect
The new digital options are part of M&S’ focus on maximising its omnichannel advantage to drive sales across both its stores and online channels, supporting customers however they want to shop.
Currently live at 22 stores, the new digital Click & Collect option has already been hugely popular – with customers praising its increased efficiency and convenience*. This rollout will increase the new format’s footprint to a total of 78 stores ahead of Christmas.
The new model replaces the traditional manned collection desks that typically have queues during busy periods, meaning customers no longer have to wait to be served and can process their collections or returns straightaway using the self-serve digital screens.
New mobile-optimised returns – more efficient than ever before
Alongside the new self service returns launch, M&S is also making improvements to its existing returns processes.
Its new mobile-friendly customer returns journey allows customers to select their preferred route much more simply for returning any items purchased on the M&S.com platform – including clothing from its 21 guest brands.
The portal was created using direct customer feedback and is found in ‘my account’ on M&S.com. It is part of a new process which removes previous customer “pain points” within the shopping journey - such as the need to visit third party courier websites, use a printer, and find the right paper summaries amongst your orders.
It means all the information customers need is easily accessible (such as the barcodes you show in-store to return product) and makes returning much quicker – reducing the average time spent preparing your return by 60%.
Most importantly, with over 50% of orders coming from mobile devices, including the M&S app, the new system is designed to be easy to use whatever device a customer is on.
Plan A: M&S Paperless Returns
What’s more, as part of the new process, M&S has committed to offering 100% paperless deliveries, which will save 205 tonnes of paper every year. This is part of M&S.com’s wider approach to sustainable shopping - from displaying sustainability information on raw materials of a product listed on the site, to M&S’s online warehouse Castle Donington being powered by 100% renewable energy.
Steve Kemp, Head of Digital Retail at M&S said: “Customers are looking for quick and convenient solutions like the option to click & collect on their terms when they want - which is now the number one choice for orders on M&S.com. At M&S we’re building a seamless omnichannel network so that customers can shop however they choose with us, and with the rollout of new digital click & collect and returns we’re making it even faster, meaning it’s never been easier to shop our range of fantastic products.”
Notes to Editors:
Additional quote on paperless returns:
Neil Phillips, Head of Post Purchase Experience said, “As we continue to grow M&S.com it’s pivotal we utilise our omnichannel advantage – offering our customers seamless interaction between online and in-store touch points. Today the majority of M&S.com orders are collected and, if needed, returned in a store. Our new paperless returns journey means however a customer wants to return an item it’s simple, quick and works well on a mobile – offering efficient omnichannel shopping whether you’re buying M&S or one of our partner brands on our platform. Customers will always want to try different sizes & styles and making it easier to return means we’re making it easier to buy with M&S.”
*Example feedback from two customers at Kew store, one of M&S’s 10x Digital stores and one of the 22 stores to already have the new digital Click & Collect model:
- “It’s fresh, modern and easy to use”
- “I really appreciate the quicker speed of service”
How to return an M&S.com order:
M&S continues to offer five routes for online returns, including omnichannel options, these are:
- All M&S Clothing & Home stores (at any till, including new self-service facility)
- All M&S owned Food stores (at the helpdesk)
- Post – Hermes
- Post – Royal Mail
- Collect from Home – Royal Mail
Digital Check-In: how it works
- Instead of waiting to queue at a collection desk, customers check-in on arrival using a digital screen.
- This immediately pings an alert to a nearby colleague on their Honeywell device which tells them exactly where their parcel is located backstage, allowing them to retrieve the product for the customer extremely quickly.
- The advantages of the new service are twofold: for the customer it means they get their parcel much quicker and don’t have to queue to be served at the desk; while operationally, it frees up colleagues to offer outstanding service in other areas of the store.
- List of 22 stores to already have the tech:
Notting Hill SF
Ecclesall Rd Sheffield SF
Eclipse Park Maidstone
Washington Galleries SF
Woodley Reading SF
- List of further 56 stores that will be kitted out with the new model ahead of Christmas:
LONGWELL GREEN BRISTOL
ARNISON CENTRE DURHAM
BIGGLESWADE RETAIL PARK
MARTLESHAM HEATH SF
MOORTOWN LEEDS SF
SIXFIELDS NORTHAMPTON SF
SOUTHAMPTON WEST QUAY
ST HELENS RAVENHEAD
STRATFORD CITY LONDON
KINGSGATE EAST KILBRIDE SF
WEST WICKHAM SF
Self-Service returns: how it works
- Instead of waiting to queue at a desk, customers process their return using a digital screen. Once they’re done, customers drop their item in the returns tray. Simple