Waitrose is to launch fully-automated temperature-controlled collection lockers as part of the supermarket’s grocery click and collect offer.
The lockers are being tested by staff at Waitrose’s head office in Bracknell, before a plan to roll the service out to branches next year is finalised.
Shoppers who place an order using Waitrose.com will receive a text message containing a PIN number. They can then drive up to the lockers, enter the number using a touch screen integrated in to the locker unit and collect their shopping.
Multiple customer orders are stored in ambient, chilled and frozen temperature-controlled lockers that can be refilled several times a day.
It is the latest move by Waitrose to ramp up its grocery click and collect service which has been available in 150 branches since 2009.
It also follows a successful three-month trial of drive-throughs in five Waitrose shops. The drive-through service will be rolled out further next year.
Waitrose Director, Ecommerce, Robin Phillips, said: ‘Giving our customers as many ways as possible to buy and collect their groceries on the move is key to building on the phenomenal growth seen at Waitrose.com.
‘Collection lockers will unlock the potential to reach customers in locations where we don’t have a shop and which are very convenient, such as on the way home from work or the school run.’
‘More and more people are adding an online shopping mission to their way of buying from Waitrose and we will continue to invest in making sure that we give them what they want, when they want it.’
Sales at Waitrose.com have consistently outperformed the online grocery market, the retailer says, up 50.1 per cent in the grocer’s first quarter.