In the battleground that is last-mile delivery, groceries are the soup du jour. Major players and smaller upstarts are jumping in to test grocery delivery to the consumer’s doorstep. The competition should benefit consumers, if not their waistlines.

One reason for the interest in grocery delivery is that online grocery shopping is poised for tremendous growth over the next few years, analysts predict. Online grocery sales are expected to go from $23 billion in 2014 to $100 billion by 2019 (moving from 3.5 percent to 12 percent, respectively, of total grocery spending), according to Packaged Facts.

No wonder major players are interested. Walmart recently said it will test a grocery delivery service with Uber Technologies and Lyft, in what many analysts see as part of the retailer’s growing efforts to compete with Amazon.

During the pilot program, a shopper can place a grocery order online and then Walmart employees will select the merchandise and package the order, the Wall Street Journal reported. Walmart will then hail an Uber or Lyft driver to pick up and deliver the order.  The service will cost $7 to $10, paid to Walmart, not the drivers.

Amazon was an early player in the grocery delivery market, launching AmazonFresh nearly a decade ago. Two years ago, the company tapped into the U.S. Postal Service’s market test of its Customized Delivery service to deliver first in San Francisco and then in New York City. Postal officials map out the day’s deliveries and then city carrier assistants load the trucks and deliver the totes of food between 3 a.m. and 7 a.m., leaving them at front doors.

Other well-established players in the market include Peapod, Instacart, and Fresh Direct, which work with many of the big name grocery stores.

So what’s next? Delivery to your refrigerator? It’s actually closer than you think. In Sweden, Logistics company PostNord has teamed up with a smart-home start-up called Glue, and ICA, Sweden’s largest grocery chain, for a pilot project that takes grocery shopping into the future. With a digital lock installed on the door, the customer can hand the digital keys to PostNord carriers to let themselves in and unpack the groceries. (Once we’ve nailed down the robot chef thing, we’ll never have to leave the table.)

The million-dollar question, of course, is just how much consumers are willing to pay for the convenience of home delivery of groceries. The margins on grocery delivery are reportedly quite thin. If they get even smaller, can all the current players survive?

Share your thoughts. Do you use a grocery delivery service? If yes, what do you like about it? What would you like to see improved? How much would you pay for delivery of groceries? Are there other types of home delivery services you would like to see that aren’t currently offered?

Comments (8)

The most direct way to report fraud, waste, misconduct within the Postal Service is via our Hotline form

Leave a comment

By submitting this form, you accept the Mollom privacy policy.
CAPTCHA
This question is for testing whether or not you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.
  • anon

    Amazon Fresh totes not picked up; deliveries being left in driveway (in direct sunlight) and not on covered front porch, as requested. I placed 10 empty totes on the front porch prior to the delivery today of my most recent Amazon Fresh order. The ten totes were not picked up, and the five new totes for my most recent Amazon Fresh order was left in the driveway near the garage doors. Had the delivery been placed on the front porch (6 feet to the right), the driver would have seen the ten empty totes ready for pickup. Request all future Amazon Fresh orders be left on the covered front porch. (All other parcels delivered by USPS are usually placed on the front porch.). Sincerely, Stephen Ping

    Jul 19, 2017
  • anon

    Drawing groceries home is what most people hate and that's why among others developed the Resender.eu home system, so your supplier can deliver 24/7 next you your home door and you don't need to be home.

    Jul 07, 2016
  • anon

    Don't understand why these services aren't more popular Douglas Mallach

    Jun 29, 2016
  • anon

    Would be great for me, I'm disabled. But I'd be nervous to use USPS. I'm currently waiting for a 3 day priority package. It went from Ohio to Pennsylvania and is now in Indianapolis. I'm in NW Indiana, about an hour from Chicago. USPS routes are completely inefficient.

    Jun 28, 2016
  • anon

    This sounds good to those of us getting on in years, who don't like the idea of shopping and dragging groceries home.

    Jun 28, 2016
  • anon

    Grocery delivery is a private enterprise endeavor. USPS should pursue their core mission,mail delivery.

    Jun 27, 2016
  • anon

    The U S P S needs to grab these deliveries, even if it thru a subsidiary delivery service.

    Jun 27, 2016
  • anon

    what ever happened to the idea where I suggested years ago about advertisement on the Postal Vehicles. I live in the Atlanta Ga. area and I know an Attorney who would love to advertise on our vehicles./

    Jun 27, 2016

Share this post


Recent Comments

  • 16 hours 40 min ago
    As a US postal employee I am embarrassed and frustrated that I cannot answer question for my daughter. She was tracking mailpiece to be delivered to her in Lehigh Acres, Fl. It got to Orlando then...
  • 16 hours 41 min ago
    As a US postal employee I am embarrassed and frustrated that I cannot answer question for my daughter. She was tracking mailpiece to be delivered to her in Lehigh Acres, Fl. It got to Orlando then...

Monthly Archive