Supermarkets ditch 24-hour opening to pick e-commerce orders

British supermarkets are starting to abandon 24/7 opening and are instead utilising the downtime to pick for online orders.

At a recent Financial Times forum, Tesco’s former chief executive Sir David Lewis said that larger hypermarkets don’t sell much during the night and so closing stores at midnight had little financial impact.

“But you can then pick [orders] from that store much more intensively than you would have done before,” he added.

Only nine of 173 large Tesco stores are open 24-hours, compared with around 350 pre-pandemic. 33 Tesco Express stores are also open around the clock.
Asda has also cut the number of 24-hour stores from around 200 to 106 since the advent of the pandemic.

“This change reflects the way that customers are now shopping with us, such as the shift online and changes to working patterns,” the supermarket told the newspaper.

Sainsbury’s said that it has a “very small number of filling stations” operating 24 hours along with several city-centre convenience stores.

“We regularly review store opening hours but haven’t announced any changes,” the company added.

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