BJ’s Wholesale Club Ups Game on Omnichannel, Website

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BJ’s Wholesale Club announced the launch of a new desktop website in an effort to make it easier for customers to research products and manage their membership.

“We’re making it more convenient for members to shop and save at BJ’s, whether it’s in-club, from their desktop or on their mobile device,” said Rafeh Masood, Senior Vice President and Chief Digital Officer of BJ’s Wholesale Club. “Omnichannel is an integral part of the company strategy and the new desktop site is another step in our transformation.”

Elaborating on the relaunch at eTail East in Boston this week, Masood said BJ’s Wholesale Club was one of the first to have a mobile site in 2012 and was an early adopter of omnichannel tactics like reserve online and pickup in store.

“To an average customer, omnichannel doesn’t mean much, because they’re interacting with a company, with a brand,” said Masood. “For us omnichannel is about connecting the dots. So when millions of visitors visit our websites or call our call centers or shop our stores, we’re creating that seamless, integrated experience across channels.”

Masood said BJ’s is looking at all connections within its channels, including connecting the call centers to its stores, and stores to its online assets. The company is using digital technology to connect store associates, customers and products more seamlessly.

In addition to managing their membership online, customers can reserve select non-perishable products online and pick them up in as little as two hours. They can also order online from specialty businesses like the deli and bakery and pick up within 36 hours.

While BJ’s Wholesale Club launched a new mobile site last month it does not yet have a mobile app, but Masood said they’re working on one. The company recently started piloting mobile express scan and expedited checkout in some stores.

“It’ won’t be just a mobile site wrapped in an app,” said Masood. “We are looking at really interesting and unique features that will give the app personality.

Masood said there is a place for the mobile web and the app to coexist. For instance, he said you can allow users to access standard smartphone functions like their camera or a fitness tracker from the app, and even reward them for activities like putting in their steps.

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