In the Netherlands, Ahold has announced a number of developments online, which is seeing expand its skill and scale in relation to the ecommerce channel, marking it out as one of the region’s most innovative retailers.
Innovating to maintain leadership
In an interview with Emerce magazine, Albert Heijn online’s general manager, Selma Postma, outlined the retailer’s need to keep innovating, despite the low share of grocery sales accounted for by the online channel. Postma pointed to the launch of the Allerhande Box, which although later than competitors, is more available to shoppers due to the retailer’s more than 900 stores, which they visit on average three times a week. She went on to highlight the importance that Albert Heijn is putting on personalisation, so that its range of sites – Albert Heijn, Etos and Gall & Gall – will be better placed to target shoppers as individuals, and are convenient, so that the same sites suggest products and move between channels with shoppers.
In relation to the Allerhande Box, as part of a separate announcement, Albert Heijn expanded the available range, adding two sets specifically for families. There are two new boxes: the ‘Family Box’ provides three meals for four people, with dishes aimed at children, and cost €49; while the second, the ‘Inspiration Box’ provides three meals for two people, for €37.50, and supplies recipes with more exotic combinations of flavours.
Operating a temporary mobile pick-up point
In Harlingen, in northern Netherlands, Albert Heijn is set to operate a temporary mobile pick-up point as a way to meet shopper demands for its products in an area where it does not operate a store. The location is aimed at meeting the demands of the residents of Terschelling and the island's approximately 500,000 annual, mostly seasonal visitors. The delivery truck will enable shoppers who are on holiday to collect orders they make online. The temporary pick-up point is part of a trial of operating collection points in third-party locations and will enable Albert Heijn to meet a short-term increase in demand.
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