eBay and Argos this morning announced a trial partnership which will mean eBay buyers will be able to collect their purchases from an Argos high street shop. Starting in the fourth quarter, 50 selected eBay merchants will be able to plug their inventory into the Argos Click & Collect network. eBay have not revealed who the 50 merchants are that will be participating.
Here’s roughly how it will work from a buyer point of view. Click & Collect will be visible in search results and also on View Item pages. In the checkout flow they will have the option to consider Click & Collect, enter their post code to find the nearest collection point and also add a mobile number for a text message to them that the item has arrived in store.
From a seller perspective, different options are under review in the trial and some details are a bit hazy. In particular, firm pricing has not been decided. eBay team members stressed that the Argos Click & Collect partnership is very much a trial and they would be closely monitoring how it works.
Argos is a smart partner. The have 735 stores nationally (although the trial will rely on just 150) and those stores are set up for collection so it should hopefully be a good in-store experience. Argos is also well ahead of the curve on Click & Collect, having introduced it back in 2000. Now about 30% of Argos sales are through Click & Collect. Last Christmas, 40% of British shoppers used Click & Collect at some point.
And, of course, if you spot any sellers offering this new service in the next few weeks do let us know how it goes.