Grocers Grapple With Direct Delivery As Instacart Goes Public

Grocers Grapple With Direct Delivery As Instacart Goes Public

As Instacart went public on Wednesday through the IPO or the initial public offering, grocers have been having second thoughts on their direct-delivery businesses.

Some have even been financing more for their in-house delivery options. For example, Wakefern Food Corp, which has a span of over a hundred grocery stores, announced on Monday the launch of its live tracking feature, which covers more than 200 locations. This will enable customers to track the location of their orders.

“Our customers rely on us to provide them with the highest level of service and convenience, and our live tracking page is another example of how we are fulfilling that commitment,” Elizabeth Goodbread, the director of digital commerce and analytics for Grocers, added in a statement.

Others have also been updating their delivery options by including more time slots and multiple fulfillment options.

“Right now, all the energy is focused on the [facilities] we have and making sure that those are where we want them to be, where they need to be and on a sustainable basis,” the CEO and Chairman of Kroger, Rodney McMullen told the analysts over the company’s previous call this month. “… We wouldn’t be to the point where we would start focusing on additional sheds until we make sure that we have a clear path on the ones we have. And we are making meaningful progress, but we still have a lot of work to do.”

On the whole, the demand for delivery will possibly continue to grow, with consumers who are hungry for more convenient and speedy options.

“The ability to reduce the 60 hours a year, on average, that consumers reportedly spend shopping for groceries is a big part of the friction/time value proposition that has helped Instacart scale,” Karen Webster from PYMNTS noted in an August feature. “Many consumers are willing to trade the value of their time for the cost of the delivery fee.”

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