AS Watson: Forget physical versus online; O+O is the new standard for retail

AS Watson: Forget physical versus online; O+O is the new standard for retail

THE WHAT? AS Watson has announced that it is moving away from O2O (online to offline or vice versa) and adopting O+O (Offline plus Online) as is its core business strategy.

THE DETAILS The traditional O2O strategy drove customers from one channel to another but O+O is more integrated and better serves customers needs, allowing them to shop across any channel, anytime, anywhere.

All of the Group’s 16,000 physical stores are connected to digital platforms, meaning the product offering is never limited by shelf space. In a few clicks, store teams can order products for delivery or pick-up by customers. With increased fulfilment capacities, the retailer can also deliver within hours.

THE WHY? As the pandemic has forced us to change how we shop, so too must retailers’ strategies change. Malina Ngai, Group COO of AS Watson Group and CEO of AS Watson (Asia & Europe) explains, “Simply, O+O describes how customers shop today. The customer journey almost always involves offline plus online… The motivation behind driving and delivering this new O+O standard is clear, there is no cannibalisation in customers’ spending in physical stores. In fact, O+O customer spends three times what an instore-only customer shops with us. It’s about creating bigger share of wallet and higher customer lifetime value.”

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