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Superdrug trials new tech to deliver in-store customer experiences online

Gaelle Walker
24 June 2021

Superdrug has launched a new tech trial to give its online make-up and fragrance shoppers the same personal levels of service and expert advice that they would receive in a physical Superdrug store.

The new ‘Superdrug Store Insider’ service connects online beauty shoppers to Superdrug colleagues working in bricks and mortar stores, in order to provide them with the elevated levels of support and product recommendations that are often required when shopping the fragrance and make-up categories.

Superdrug, which operates 800 stores across the UK, hopes to extend the service across its estate following the trial, which is currently taking place in four Superdrug stores (Westwood Cross, Leicester Fosse Park, Basildon Mayflower, Oxford Westgate).

Superdrug eCommerce director Matt Walburn said: “The Covid-19 pandemic has significantly accelerated the growth of our Superdrug.com business and we are passionate to provide a market leading online experience for all our customers.

“Traditionally a bricks and mortar business, Superdrug has long had a reputation for expert health and beauty advice in store.

“So now, in a time when customers are shopping online for safety and convenience, we want to ensure we can offer that same personal shopping approach, just from the comfort of a customer’s own living room. A big part of our ecommerce strategy is about humanising the online shopping experience.”

Superdrug’s online innovation is being championed by its owner the A.S Watson Group, which has developed a strong Offline plus Online (O+O) strategy, in a bid to better link its vast store estate with online channels over the past year.

Commenting on the group’s O+O strategy at the virtual Beauty Tech Live event which took place back in April, A.S Watson CEO Malina Ngai said: “Simply, O+O describes how customers shop today.

"The customer journey almost always involves offline plus online. The traditional strategy of online to offline or offline to online from the past generation drove customers from one channel to another, however O+O is totally different.

“It is more about creating an integrated experience to better serve customers’ needs, that enables them to shop across any channel, anytime, anywhere.”

“It’s an organisation cultural change when it comes to managing the business and prioritisation. Physical stores will continue to play a significant role in creating our unique O+O experience and will be a big part of an ecosystem that is powered by technology, big data and AI.”

Customers can access ‘Superdrug Store Insider’ by visiting Superdrug.com and clicking on the service icon in the corner of the screen to be connected to store.

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