Lidl 'ditches plans' to launch online shopping and delivery in the UK

LIDL is believed to have ditched plans to launch online shopping and delivery in the UK.

The budget supermarket has shut down the part of its business which runs digital logistics.

When it was created in 2018 it was seen as a sign of Lidl's ambition to launch online shopping.

But it this week applied for the firm to be struck of the Companies House register and said it'll instead focus "on our bricks-and-mortar business".

It comes as the UK’s major supermarkets, including Lidl’s closest rival Aldi, has expanded their online offerings during the coronavirus crisis.

In May, Aldi started testing same-day delivery service with Deliveroo and last month, it rolled out a click and collect option.

Lidl has also hinted of online delivery expansion, but it's not yet launched any.

Here’s how to cut the cost of your grocery shop

SAVING on your shop can make a big difference to your wallet. Here are some tips from Money.co.uk about how you can cut the cost of your shopping bills:

  • Write yourself a list – Only buy items that you need. If it isn’t on your list, don’t put it in the trolley
  • Create a budget – Work out a weekly budget for your food shopping
  • Never shop hungry – you are far more likely to buy  more food if your tummy is rumbling
  • Don’t buy pre-chopped veggies or fruit – The extra they’ll charge for chopping can be eye watering
  • Use social media – follow your favourite retailers to find out about the latest deals
  • Be disloyal – You may want to go to different stores to find the best bargains
  • Check the small print –  It’s always worth checking the price per kg/lb/litre when comparing offers so you’re making a like for like decision as a bigger box won’t necessarily mean you get more
  • Use your loyalty cards – Don’t be afraid to sign up to them all. They all work slightly differently – work out what bonus suits you better and remember to trade in your points for additional rewards

Last year, it advertised for a new digital project manager that would head up a "new online platform" and be tasked with "driving online sales".

However, the closure of its digital logistics arm suggests any significant online shopping expansion is no longer on the cards.

A Lidl spokesperson told The Grocer: "This company was originally set up in 2018 to house a series of digital logistics assets.

"However, in line with our business model and maintaining simple and streamlined operations, the decision has been made to close the legal entity, but to keep exploring suitable digital opportunities within existing structure, as we did with the successful launch of our Lidl Plus rewards app.

"Our focus remains on our bricks-and-mortar business, which we see as presenting significant growth opportunity."

Last month, Christian Härtnagel, Lidl's UK managing director, also told The Times Lidl hadn't found an online solution suitable for its low-cost model.

He said: "I do think we will go back. I don’t think online will remain on the level we see now.

"I haven’t seen a model that could take us online without playing with the biggest promise that we have — that we will never be beaten on price.

"And that, as a discounter, is at the forefront of everything we do and every decision we make."

The Sun has contacted Lidl for comment.

In August, Lidl launched a new loyalty app that gives you coupons and exclusive discounts when you shop.

It marked the first time Lidl has ever launched a loyalty scheme.

The supermarket is currently giving free Halloween doughnuts to its loyalty scheme members and they look delicious.

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