Walmart Inc (WMT.N) and Kroger Co (KR.N) are planning to even the playing field with Amazon by tweaking the curbside pickup formula to work for groceries.
Both companies are now gearing towards a new online ordering system that lets shoppers place an order, then head towards the nearest store to pick the items at the curb.
The service is much more affordable than home delivery while giving the shoppers the option to get away from the long lines at the counter section. With Amazon’s latest procurement of Whole Foods back in August, other veteran supermarket companies are now trying to step up their game.
“The way people are going to shop for groceries is going to be curbside, not delivery,” Jason Goldberg, Senior Vice President SapientRazorfish
A cheaper and more convenient way to get your items
Kroger has had the service since the company purchased Harris Teeter in 2014. The company also launched its own ordering and pick-up program called ClickList, which is now available at a thousand of its 2,800 locations.
According to Clicklist vice president Matt Thompson, Clicklist users pay at least 40 to 60 percent more than in-store shoppers because they place orders for bulkier items. Walmart has also expressed its plans to expand its free curbside pickup in 2019, which means that almost half of its U.S. stores will soon have the service.
Both companies have developed their own online systems to let their customers pre-order items from their nearest neighborhood store.
The curbside pickup designed for groceries is almost the same as a carryout pizza: workers pick and pack the products that were ordered online, then give it to the shoppers in the parking lot. It’s much convenient for both retailers and shoppers.
Shoppers will do driving instead of hiring a delivery van, while shoppers can save time from long queues at their neighborhood market.
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