eBay to offer item collections from Argos stores

eBay has announced it is to offer collection from Argos retail stores, for items from eBay Market sellers.

As part of its recent moves to merge its operation with high street retail, eBay has announced a partnership with Argos that will allow Market sellers to ship their goods to Argos stores for collection. 150 stores are to participate in the early stages of the roll-out.

This Argos detail is intended to let eBay Market sellers without their own high street stores offer a ‘click and collect’ option, as opposed to traditional delivery to home addresses.

President of eBay Devin Wanig says that “all large eBay merchants” will now be able to offer click and collect to their customers, to either Argos shops or their own stores. These include many high street shops including PC World and – of course – Argos.

eBay has positioned its new click and collect service as a way for traditional retailers to diversify in a high street market in decline. Argos MD John Walden says click and collect is “growing even faster than home delivery, and may even surpass home delivery,” that it is “more convenient” and “more personal” than delivery direct to homes.

Online giant Amazon has also experimented in this area in recent years with its Amazon Locker service – which lets you pick up products from physical locations. It makes use of existing networks including Collect Plus, a string of stores that allow drop-offs for courier deliveries.

Walden says the trial is to “investigate” whether this move “makes sense” for retailers.  After Argos closed 75 stores in late 2012 in order to focus on its online business, it should at least slow down the diminishing of the retailer’s high street presence.

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