Big W has taken the plunge and entered into the online retail market. They have launched their online store available here – http://bigw.com.au.
Compared to the North America and Europe, Australia is lagging behind in the world of ecommerce. Large department stores such as Myers, David Jones and Target do no have an online store.
The launch of the Big W store is great news for ecommerce in Australia. It means that the large chains may start investing some real money into selling online.
Online stores such as OverStocked, DStore, and Big Brown Box have been open for a number of years now. Australian consumers are getting used to buying products and services over the Internet.
About Big W Online
The Big W store has over 4,000 products in a variety of categories –
- Home & Garden
- Sports & Leisure
Australia post is being used for delivery of products. It seems like a fairly simple pricing structure is being used. Pricing for packages are as below –
- Packages less than 500 grams will cost $4.98
- Packages less than 10 KG will cost $9.98
- Packages over 10 KG cost around $20
- Express Post is also an option but costs extra
PayPal is being offered as a method of payment. PayPal is not offered on other Woolworths websites such as Wooolworths and HomeShop.
Big W have stated that there is no price difference between it’s online store and it’s normal stores.
The website appears to be nice and simple to navigate. The frontpage does have a lot of pictures and banners trying to get your attention. I think this could have been cleaner in design.
There is a reviews and ratings for products. Customers like to read reviews and ratings from other customers. Just like testimonials can make customers feel satisfied that they are ordering a quality product.
The product images have a nice popup display. Other images of the product are displayed as thumbnails. This makes it really clear that other pictures of the product exist. I think this is very nice.
The estimated delivery charge is a great tool. By entering your postcode on the product page, you can see exactly how much you are going to be charged for delivery. There is nothing more annoying to a customer when they need to go through the checkout procedure to see the cost of delivery.
Tell a friend
The tell a friend tool has made an appearance as well. A nice lightbox appears with the opportunity to email the details of the product to a friend. Many online stores benefit having this tool.
You can check the stock levels of particular products as well. By entering in your post code, you can see the stock levels at many of the Big W stores. It also displays the distance to each store. If the store is low in stock, it displays the phone number so you can call that particular store. You could call the store and check for stock and maybe they could reserve the product for you.
Overview of features
The features of the website have been nicely done. You would expect that from a large department store but even they can get it wrong sometimes.
The lightboxes (popup windows) load very quickly. There’s nothing more annoying then these being broken.
The website still has a couple of formatting issues to resolve. Some of the text goes over the background in some places. I am sure they will will these up as the site continues to be improved.
It’s great to see a large department store go online. Overall, I think it will help push online sales in Australia and hopefully the other department stores will follow suit.