Some might remember the days of the milkman delivering fresh milk in glass bottles to households across America. Each day the milkman would replace the empty glass bottles placed in a milk crate near the doorstep with cold milk, fresh from the grocer, sometimes before the rising of the sun. As the old adage goes, “history repeats itself,” so goes the story of home grocery delivery. This time around, however, consumers are receiving more than just milk.
Across the more than 50 outlets offering online delivery services, sales have increased 15% since 2015, according to CBS News. Stater Bros. Markets, a regional grocer in the Los Angeles area, recently launched a grocery delivery service to select ZIP codes in L.A. County and Inland Empire. Using instacart.com or the Instacart app, shoppers can order their items for a personal shopper to pick up and deliver to the address provided. Shoppers can choose between “a per delivery” charge or a subscription-based, unlimited delivery service. One loyal customer posted on the Stater Bros. Faceboook page, “I love instacart! I blew out my knee and had no one who could do my grocery shopping. I downloaded the app and the process was super easy!”
It seems convenience may be driving consumers to order their groceries, and Stater Bros. is certainly evidence of this larger trend among traditional grocers. Earlier this year, Walmart began testing several home delivery services using employee commutes to drop-off routes for packages. This year also marked partnerships between Costco and Shipt in Tampa to expand home delivery services to 50 additional markets by the end of this year, as well as between Aldi and Instacart for home delivery in Los Angeles, Atlanta, and Dallas, as reported by The Street.
In the Midwest, a Michigan-based retailer just passed 500,000 deliveries and expects to top over one-million deliveries from its stores by the end of the year. Bizjournals.com reports Meijer’s door-to-door service, which launched only a year ago, has delivered more than 85,000 cases of water, one-million eggs, and 1.5 million pounds of bananas. Meijer President and CEO Rick Keyes remarking on the success of the company’s program, explains the program’s success can be attributed to its seamless integration of digital technology with the best of brick-and-mortar services.