UK retailers will continue to see high online participation in home and garden as almost half of the UK consumers (45.9%) agree that they will shop online more often for these items after the pandemic. This proportion is 5.5 ppts higher than the global average for home and garden and 27.1 ppts higher than Germany.

Improvements in the UK home and garden retailers’ online capabilities will have contributed to consumer willingness to shop online more for these products. Kitchen specialists Wren, Magnet, and Jonas & James, as well as department store John Lewis, now offer virtual design appointments, enabling them to maintain high levels of customer service online and instore. John Lewis has also launched a virtual Christmas shop, where shoppers can explore the floor and purchase themed homeware from home. Home improvement retailer B&Q is opening concessions in four ASDA supermarkets and customers can order selected items online for collection, which will significantly reduce dwell time and increase convenience.

Comparatively, German retailers have been slow to invest in digital amid the pandemic. Department store chain Galeria (one of the largest chains in Germany) does not offer any virtual design services. Additionally, furniture specialist Roller, which held a 1.5% share of the German Home market in 2018, also does not offer virtual design appointments, despite selling kitchens and bathroom furniture.