Man behind Poundworld launches online Poundshop today

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Poundshop.com

www.poundshop.com opens online today, at 2pm. It's the online branch of Poundworld - one of the biggest £1 brands in the UK. It's the brainchild of businessman Steve Smith - the man behind Poundland.

But are you tempted? Will you shop there?


According to Retail Week, it was meant to go online on Friday, but teething problems with stock deliveries meant it was delayed for three days.

The store is launching with 1,000 different products. The enormous success of the pound shops on Britain's high streets mean that it was only a matter of time before they began to populate the web too. The idea of being able to order bargains without having to carry them home certainly has an appeal.

The founders claim they can stock a wider range than they can squeeze into a high street shop, and that they can reach people who don't live near a pound shop - although it's not clear entirely who that might be.

Down sides

However, there are three catches. To make the online model stack up, the store has a delivery charge of £3.65. This could be the stumbling block for the dedicated bargain-hunter, who will often make a trip to the pound shop in order to save small sums on every-day items.

Twitter users weren't all convinced that pound-shoppers were ready to pay for delivery. When superscrimper Hally Wallop Tweeted about the launch, Ian Douglas responded: "Too much competition, too high delivery charge."

The second issue is that they were pipped to the post for the title of the first online pound shop, because hereforapound.com also opened last week, offering over £1,000 products, a delivery charge of £4.50, and free delivery for any spend over £30 (with no minimum spend). That company is a venture by an Exeter couple, Donna and Mark Baker, who are building on the success of their pop-up pound shop hereforaday.com.

Finally, Poundshop has a £10 minimum spend. The question for many people is whether they really want to spend that much in a pound shop. The average spend in a high street pound shop is between £6 and £8.

The Bakers told the Western Morning News that the average spend in their pop-up shop was £19, so they know people are willing to buy their bargains in a bit more bulk online. However, on Twitter there was some skepticism about Poundshop's minimum spend. Christian Cull said: "That's tenpoundland".

Hereforapound has already tested the waters, and found a big demand for its products. It told the Western Morning News that its 10 most popular £1 items were:

1. Toilet roll
2. Cleaning products
3. Washing up liquid
4. Kitchen roll
5. Toothpaste
6. Shower gel
7. Shampoo
8. Batteries
9. Bin bags
10. Deodorant

But what do you think? Would you shop at an online pound shop?