The online team at UK supermarket Sainsbury's is in the midst of what is expected to be the company's busiest online Christmas ever.

From 21-23 December the retailer predicts it will make more than 100,000 deliveries, while online grocery sales are expected to be up 30% in the week leading up to Christmas Day – compared to a normal week.

Sainsbury's has taken on more drivers to meet the increased demand and in total over 15,000 colleagues will pick, pack and deliver customer orders across more stores than ever before. 

Robbie Feather, Sainsbury's online director, said: "We've listened to what our customers have told us, and over the past year we've updated our website, improved the recipe and ideas section and lowered delivery costs – all this helps our customers save precious time and money as they shop.

"Click & collect gives people added choice, enabling them to shop with us wherever and whenever they want. This will be our busiest online Christmas ever, and we're geared up to give people the quality, service and customer experience they expect from Sainsbury's."

As price competition among the largest supermarkets in the UK continues to intensify, Sainsbury's has introduced a £1 delivery slot and free delivery after 2pm for certain orders. Additionally, for the first time, Sainsbury's customers can place their order online through a bespoke Christmas ordering website and then pick up their items in a store.

Online customers at the grocer also have an opportunity to purchase tableware, decorations, crackers and other items for the home, for the first time.

Meanwhile, the UK's largest retailer Tesco has placed teams of six to nine bag packers in 400 of its stores across the country, in an attempt to improve the customer experience across its estate.

All large Tesco stores will also have a dedicated greeter at the store entrance as the business looks to use extra manpower to boost efficiency during its busiest period of the year.