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Kmart expands layaway program to Internet

Hoffman Estates, Ill. – Kmart today announced it will launch an online layaway program Friday, Oct. 9. Consumers can pick up their layaway purchases at a local Kmart store after they’ve completed payment.

As with in-store layaway, consumers have eight weeks to pay for their merchandise. Payments can be made online or in stores. The service includes a $5 initiation fee in most states and requires the shopper to put down a deposit of $15 or 10%, whichever is greater.

The online program includes calculator outlining payment schedules for each layaway contract as well as e-mail alerts reminding participants when their payments are due.

"We have an entire generation of customers that grew up shopping online," said Mark Snyder, chief marketing officer, Kmart. "Launching online layaway at Kmart engages these customers by allowing them to spread their payments out over time and better plan their spending."

Online layaway is also available at Sears. Kmart said its in-store layaway business grew by double-digits in 2008.

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