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Last Updated: Wednesday, 30 August 2006, 09:51 GMT 10:51 UK
Tesco expands home shopping range
Tesco store in Somerset
Tesco stores will act as home shopping pick-up points
Tesco is launching a new home shopping service for a range of 8,000 non-food items including sofas, bikes, golf clubs and cameras.

Called Tesco Direct, shoppers can use the service via the Tesco website or a mail order catalogue, and place orders on the web, by phone or in some stores.

Shoppers can pick items up at selected stores or get them delivered next day.

Tesco already has a 31.6% share of the UK grocery market, and the service will rival catalogue firms such as Argos.

Online strategy

In the online arena, Tesco's domination of the UK grocery market is even greater, with a 66% share, amounting to 30,000 orders per day.

Tesco's inexorable progress is a competitive threat to almost every retailer
Richard Hyman, Verdict Consulting

The supermarket giant will be able to distribute millions of catalogues via its 1,400 stores, many of which will be able to act as pick-up points.

Supermarkets are ramping up their online offerings as they seek to grow revenues by selling a bigger variety of non-food items.

Tesco is already well advanced in its strategy and is expected to overtake the Argos Retail Group as Britain's biggest non-food retailer later this year, according to Verdict Consulting.

"It makes very, very few mistakes," said Verdict managing director Richard Hyman.

"Tesco's inexorable progress is a competitive threat to almost every retailer."

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