Morrisons is now publically facing the consequences of being a late mover into the ecommerce website market.
UK supermarkets and ecommerce websites
The big four supermarkets in the United Kingdom are Tesco, Asda, Sainsburyys and Morrisons. All four of these supermarket brands have a relatively strong presence in the UK market, some more than others, but they all provide consistent competition with each other; both on the high street and online. That is except for Morrisons.
With the recent high street failures of Jessops, Blockbusters and most significantly HMV, it is evident that businesses have to take on a multichannel ecommerce website approach to business in order to remain competitive and sustain success. In any kind of competitive business environment it is imperative that to remain prevalent in the market and keep consumers engaged you must be, at least, at the same level as your competitors if not better.
Tesco, Asda and Sainsburyys remain highly competitive with their in store and online services, leaving UK customers constantly hopping from one supermarket to the next. Walking into any of their stores, aside from pricing and branding, you will find many of their product offerings the same. From groceries to clothes, entertainment and home furnishings. Morrisons however do not offer clothes and only a select collection of home furnishings. Furthermore, they do not offer online shopping and delivery services.
Not fully adapting to this ecommerce age has proven detrimental to many high street firms and if Morrisons donnt make the necessary adaptations to their strategy, they may lose their position as one of the big four to other growing supermarkets that have a strong online presence like Waitrose or Ocado.
poor christmas sales signal the need for an ecommerce website
Christmas is a peak selling time for supermarkets and sales are always expected to rise. For Morrisons however, with just their revenue being brought in by physical stores, sales dropped 2.5% as more consumers opted for the convenience of home delivery from its competitors.
Winter 2012 was the season for online sales as they increased by 17.8% and more people accessed ecommerce websites through mobile devices like smartphones and tablet PCs.
The chief executive of Morrisons has now acknowledged that some serious consideration needs to go into launching an online grocery store. They have already made baby steps into ecommerce by launching Morrisons Cellar that provides home delivery of wine. However this may prove not enough to keep them competitive long term.
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