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Home Latest Articles Blog Kagoo Explains: Currys ShopLive

Kagoo Explains: Currys ShopLive

Updated 12 August 2020
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Welcome to ‘Kagoo Explains’ - a series of short articles de-mystifying some of the confusing terminology used to describe tech. This week we’re looking at ‘ShopLive’ - a concept Currys has designed to help make electrical shopping easier in the wake of COVID-19.

The current state of the world has caused untold problems across all levels of society - from politics to our everyday life, the world is a different place now. While the main lockdown has eased, shoppers are understandably skittish about going back to ordinary physical shopping. Despite non-essential shops reopening, the largest majority of people are staying away, choosing instead to shop online rather than risk their health.

According to Essential Retail, “UK shop footfall fell by almost 50% year-on-year in the third week since non-essential stores have reopened in England, with many consumers reluctant to return to physical shopping amid the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.”
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Now online shopping has many benefits over visiting a shop (no need to wear a mask; no queues; you can shop in your PJs!), but there are a few important limitations: you only get the photos and description chosen by the shop, you can’t test the products and there is nobody around to ask questions or help you out.

The electrical retailer Currys have clearly been pondering the same question, because they recently launched a scheme aimed at helping people make better buying decisions without the need to visit a physical shop - it’s called ShopLive.

ShopLive is a new tool that allows you to talk directly to staff about products you’re interested in buying - they are calling it an ‘in-store experience’ from your own home. Certain pages on Currys website (for instance, this 48” OLED TV) will bring up a prompt to talk to an expert. When you click that, it’ll start a video call between you and a member of staff at a Currys shop. They’ll then be able to give all the helpful advice you could get in a shop, but without the need to jeopardize your health by visiting the high street.

They can help with:

  • Answering any questions about how a product works
  • Showing you how it looks in real life
  • Explaining the terminology and details of specifications
  • Suggesting accessories or alternatives

Answering questions: When considering a big purchase, there are always tonnes of questions: How old is the product? Is it heavy or light? Does it come with any extras in the box? Is the interface easy to use? A Google search doesn’t always give complete or truthful answers - and the flood of information can be overwhelming, making it hard to find the info you need. With a real person you get an answer to the important questions, and you’re not likely to get swamped with useless or incorrect information.

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Showing you the product: It’s hard to really judge an object by a single picture of it on a small screen - not only could it be a bad representation of the product, but the whole thing could be photoshopped to hide any flaws. Being able to see the product shown off in real-time is the next best thing to actually inspecting it yourself

Explaining terminology/specifications: It can be a challenge to decipher the jargon and obtuse language used for technology. Indeed that’s part of the reason we set up Kagoo in the first place, to help people make informed decisions. So if you don’t know your OLED from your QLED, talking to an expert can help straighten things out, and allow you to decide whether the product is *really* the best one for you.

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Alternate suggestions/additions: Finally, you may not have picked the best product - maybe there is a cheaper model that would fit your needs better, or a more obscure brand that frequently gets overlooked. In such cases, talking to an expert live makes it far easier to ascertain what is best, and they can also suggest pairings or accessories for the product - such as a computer bag that fits a laptop perfectly.

For those of you who (like me) get really nervous about making video calls, there is good news: thankfully the video is 1-way, so nobody will see you, only hear you. Therefore there’s no need to get worried and dressed up! They will also never ask for any payment details, or personal information - so it’s extremely secure, which is a weight off my mind.

All-in-all, this is an extremely helpful tool, and an elegant way of helping people make more informed buying decisions in this uncertain new world we are living in. Hopefully we shall see more stores and retailers rolling out such tech-savvy solutions in the near future - rest assured that Kagoo will keep you updated as soon as we sniff out any more!

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