Tesco is mirroring key elements of its British online groceries site, Tesco.com, in many of its 13 other countries of operation.
The supermarket giant will use a standard setup and tailor each site locally, Matt Jeffers, international development manager at Tesco.com, told the IDC Retail Insights e-Commerce conference in London today.
The news comes a week after Tesco said it would invest £150 million in its e-commerce business, and focus more on the UK, as part of a wider effort to bolster operations.
“Last year, we began to consider taking our e-commerce operation abroad, and decided to first concentrate on Central Europe and then Asia,” Jeffers said. “We launched in Prague, in the Czech Republic, where there is no equivalent service, this February, and are currently establishing an e-commerce setup in the Polish market. In the next couple of years we will establish ourselves in Asia.”
With regards to Tesco’s US Fresh & Easy chain, Jeffers said the company was “considering a dot.com model”.
“We plan to basically take the standard product model, apply what works in the local markets, and fill any gaps with new processes and solutions,” he said.
With the exception of the US, many of the markets require unique payment processing options to deal with alternatives to credit cards, which are sometimes less commonly used than in the UK.
Tesco will focus closely on having the “right customer data”, including through loyalty schemes similar to its UK Clubcard, he said. It will also ensure it has “strong product data, good cross-channel integration and tight operational management”.
Last week, as Tesco announced it was investing heavily in its online business, it said it had “already made a strong start" with a new web platform for Tesco Direct, which will house almost all of its UK online business.
Tesco said that the new website – which has more than 75,000 products for sale on it, double the amount compared to the previous site – has greater functionality and is easier for customers to use. It is also fully configured for mobile devices.