Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Wal-Mart's Asda To Let Customers Help Choose What Stores Sell

In a program is believed to be one of the first of its type in the world for a retailer; Wal-Mart's Asda unit in the U.K. will start e-mailing customers images and details of products from the store's buyers in the Far East, asking whether they want to see them in stores.

The Wall Street Journal reports, "We're very keen on using the digital channel to enhance what we do and allow our customers into the business," said Asda corporate communications chief Dominic Burch. "This will give us more insight into what their current thinking is about what they want to see."

There are no current plans to launch the program in the U.S., but Wal-Mart is known for taking successful initiatives and greatly expanding them throughout its organization.

Asda will e-mail the pictures to its U.K. "Pulse of the Nation" group of roughly 18,000 customers, which it regularly queries on a variety of matters. Respondents will have the option of giving thumbs up or down, and Asda's decisions on whether to stock the items will be significantly influenced by what the shoppers are saying, Burch said. "

By having customer and community involvement with store items, will this present both the shopper and the retailer with a mutually beneficial retail environment?

Wal-Mart's Asda To Let Customers Help Choose What Stores Sell

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