In today’s society, the department store is a solid feature generally in most towns and cities over the UK. Popular for their huge range of products, such as clothes, electrical items and furniture, all located beneath the one roof, they have become referred to as one-stop shops, effectively eliminating the need to trawl round a huge selection of individual stores to get different items.
Built on the concept of convenience, department stores Department Store have already been around for over 100 years. Inevitably over time, they have evolved to offer the consumer increased expediency, with features such as for example online catalogues becoming typical.
However, the advent of the department store came into being in 1852 in Paris, France. At that time, computers had yet to be invented also it was the physical stores themselves that were celebrated for their innovative method of shopping. Not only have there been a variety of different departments displaying a range of goods on the market, but those goods also had fixed prices attached to them, removing the need for bargaining and haggling. It was at this time the idea of a ‘money back guarantee’ was introduced, which allowed for the exchange and refund of unwanted or faulty goods.
By 1890, the idea of department stores had taken hold and retail entered a complete new era. Over time, many features were added to them, in order to make the shopping experience as holistic as possible for consumers, without them leaving the store. For instance, features, such as restaurants, and services like personal shoppers, generally became standard.
The introduction of department store catalogues was also a large step. The stores could not only extend their branding into the home, but additionally it meant that customers could order what they wanted simply by browsing through the catalogue, and either calling up to place their order via calling, or posting an order form.
It’s the advent of the web, however, which includes really changed how people shop and has served to extend even further the range of goods and services department stores offer. No longer are people restricted to the item in a single particular store or catalogue (different stores, depending on their size, will stock different items, whilst catalogues are restricted by printing costs, for instance), and instead they now have access to a larger range of goods.
Additionally, people can order their desired items online and have them delivered a couple of days later. Indeed, if the fast delivery option is chosen, it’s possible for some items to be delivered the very next day.
Many high street shops now operate an online outlet in addition to their high street real estate operations and Debenhams Direct is but one example of what department stores can provide in the way of website services. From their online wedding service, where you can organise your wedding gift list, buy stationery and look for your dress, in addition to hire the groom’s outfit, to taking advantage of their special clothing range previews and exclusive gifts, you can partake in a holistic shopping experience, without leaving the comfort of your armchair.