May 17, 2018

BJ's adds one-swipe wishlist, other new online features

Northborough-based BJ's Wholesale Club has unveiled a series of web-based initiatives, including an ability to pick up purchases in-store in as soon as two hours after ordering.

You can already swipe right in online dating to indicate to a potential partner that you're interested.

Now BJ's Wholesale Club is adding a simple one-swipe move to its app allowing customers to add an item to their shopping wish list in just a single motion. As with online dating, swiping left on a phone screen dismisses a product as the app gauges a customer's preference based on those swipes.

"This new feature is easy to use, and we believe it makes our app fun as well as convenient," Rafeh Masood, the senior vice president and chief digital officer at BJ's, said in a statement.

The feature is one of three new online features rolled out by the Northborough company this month. BJ's also announced on Thursday it plans to go public for the first time since 2014.

BJ's has also begun allowing purchases on in which customers can pick up orders at their nearest store in as little as two hours. Shoppers can skip a line and pick up their order at a specialized in-store spot.

BJ's members can add coupons digitally to those orders.

In another new feature, BJ's is testing mobile ordering in its delis in select Massachusetts stores, including in Auburn, Framingham, Franklin and Northborough.

The pilot program lets members select deli meats and cheeses with desired thickness and place an order with their selected location. All orders will be ready within 20 minutes and held until the club closes for the day.

The new online initiatives follow a move in March in which BJ's paired with the online ordering company Instacart to allow same-day deliveries of food and some household items. They also come a year after the company added two digitally-focused executives to its management team.

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