B&Q has launched diy.ie, its first fully transactional website for the Republic of Ireland and, for the first time, home delivery and Click + Collect services are now available to customers of B&Q at Arcadia Retail Park in Athlone.
In a significant move by the business, B&Q is making it easier for people across Ireland to access and shop for home improvement products and services through a blend of online and instore.
To service home delivery orders across the country, the company is creating a new Digital Hub. As well as enhancing the customer experience nationwide, this new hub will create 19 new jobs, including drivers and warehouse staff, adding to the current complement of over 550 team members.
While retail stores, including B&Q Athlone, will remain at the centre of the B&Q offering, increasing investment in e-commerce and creating Digital Hub stores are central to its overall growth strategy. Digital Hub stores were first rolled out across the UK in May 2020. The new hub stores involve a reorganisation of existing instore warehouse space and the creation of dedicated teams to manage orders, as well as the use of local delivery options to help speed up ‘last mile’ delivery.
In line with the UK model, the Digital Hub store is expected to fulfil over 80% of diy.ie orders and complement centralised deliveries such as those originating from showroom fulfilment centres, and delivery direct from vendors.
“This is a major milestone for the business and we expect home delivery and Click + Collect to be in big demand for both our existing and for new customers. This project has been two years in planning and the shift in consumer behaviour that was so evident during the pandemic clearly supports the rationale for a revised retail model of ‘bricks and clicks’ for Ireland.
“Our eight stores in the Republic of Ireland already help make it easier for many customers to improve their homes and with our new nationwide offering, we anticipate growing our customer base and being able to help even more customers access a great range of home improvement products. Whether bought online or in store, a nail is never just a nail, it’s the start of something far bigger. Improving our homes has the power to improve the lives of our loved ones and ourselves too,” John Eason, divisional director, Ireland and the Islands, said.