M&S reassures shoppers 'we're working on it' after panicking customers

The Marks and Spencer website and app have gone down following "technical issues". The M&S main website and app have been offline since earlier this afternoon - sparking panic among shoppers and customers trying to buy items.

"Sorry you can't shop with us right now," the website says. "We're working hard to be back online as soon as possible." Meanwhile, a message on the app says: "Sorry, you can't shop with us on our app right now, as we're working to improve your experience.

"We'll be back soon." In response to one customer, M&S said it was experiencing "technical issues" but was "working on it". A spokesperson added: "A third party service provider is experiencing a technical issue which is temporarily affecting access to our website and app.

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"We hope to be back up and running soon and are sorry to customers for the inconvenience caused.” All the menus and images have disappeared apart from one showing a model in a green jacket. "What happened to the M&S website?" asked a customer.s

"Marks and Spencer, app and website down?" asked another. M&S is the latest high street name to have technical issues - last month some Sainsbury's shoppers had problems with their online orders, and Tesco was hit by delivery chaos.

A Sainsbury's spokeswoman blamed "a small technical issue", and added: "We have contacted these customers directly to apologise for the inconvenience." The outage comes a few days before M&S is expected to reveal a big jump in annual profits.

Guy Lawson-Johns, equity analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown, said: “Growing market share and margins whilst embarking on a significant cost-cutting programme is a tough balancing act, but the group’s nailed it so far. Along with Lidl and the retail arm of Ocado, which it owns a 50% share of, M&S is ranked as Britain’s fastest-growing grocer over the last quarter.

“But the retail sector is a notoriously tricky operating environment and wage inflation and business rates have provided an unwanted challenge to its cost-cutting programme.”