Bunnings Warehouse's online systems will be tested from Monday as the retailer closes its 44 stores in Greater Sydney to all but trade customers, with the rest now expected to shop and place orders online.
The company said in a statement that retail customers “will be able to purchase items online using ‘click and deliver’ and contactless ‘drive and collect’.
The temporary closure of Bunnings stores came after the extension of lockdowns in Sydney and the introduction of a curfew in hotspot areas.
“With the new restrictions on retail spanning a large part of Sydney, Bunnings has made the decision to temporarily close all its stores across Greater Sydney to the general public,” managing director Mike Schneider said.
“This is in support of the government and for the safety and security of team members, customers and the community.
“We know from experience that applying a consistent approach across a metropolitan area is easier for our team to manage and helps reduce travel by residents between local government areas.”
Bunnings launched into the online space at the end of 2019, before expanding its range of services in the early months of the pandemic last year.
It has been using analytics to further refine its online services and to stay on top of changing expectations and behaviours of consumers.
These systems now face a test with a large portion of Bunnings’ customer base now required to order online and then either arrange contactless pickup outside a store, or have their items delivered.
In Greater Sydney, only trade customers can still visit stores in person, with Schneider acknowledging that many required supplies “to keep their businesses running and for emergency repairs.”
Outside of Greater Sydney, Bunnings’ regional NSW stores “will remain open with strong Covid-safe measures in place so customers can get the essential products they need,” Schneider said.
Schneider added that Bunnings “is looking forward to welcoming all customers back into our stores in Greater Sydney, as soon as restrictions are lifted.”