Pierre C. Rumpf's Blog
You’ve moved most of your holiday and birthday shopping online with great results, so why are you hesitant to embrace online grocery shopping?
While the "on-line" part might be new, the delivery part was a staple of family life in yesteryear. The milkman delivered bottles of liquid freshness to the doorstep daily, and the greengrocer hawked his vegetables at your back door. Even the baker delivered fresh bread to your table, and the butcher cut to order and delivered whatever was available.
Then came the “modern” era of supermarkets and big cart shopping. Gone were the days of opening your front door to find the crate of fruit or haggling over a cup of coffee with the produce farmer. The new way to buy food was to make one trip to a large grocery store, fill the cart from shelves stacked with multiple options, gather fruits and vegetables shipped from far lands whether in-season or not, then stand in line to pay for it, let the box-boy or bag-girl pack it up for you and deliver it to your car. Sometimes they even helped you put it in the trunk. Then, when you arrived home, you called to the kids and your spouse to help you bring in the groceries.
With a few adjustments, this is still the norm for most Americans. But it doesn't have to be. You could just have the best of both worlds: all the choices available from a large supermarket with the convenience of home delivery.
Grocery shopping via online portals typically falls into three categories: online only stores; supermarkets with online pickup or delivery services; shopping and delivery services.
- Online only. As the name indicates, these stores do not exist as brick and mortar. Clients order and pay via a website and products arrive at their doorstep. At one time, online portals offered only dry goods since shipping in warm or cold seasons would not affect the product. Now, however, many online grocers offer packaged meals with fresh meat and produce packaged especially to arrive farm fresh and ready to cook.
- Supermarkets. Not to be outdone by the convenience of online shopping, grocery stores and supermarket chains began offering online services for order with convenience pick up in designated store locations. Amazon’s purchase of Whole Foods chain spurred even more competition in the online ordering arena. Some stores also offer preferential parking for online order customers. Other stores now offer delivery for a fee, even same-day delivery, and a short delivery window, so you're not stuck at home waiting.
- Services. To fill the gap, shopper and delivery services like Insta-Cart and Shipt will shop for you at stores that don't offer delivery.
If you're pressed for time and are looking for a new way to add more time to your life, try out one of these services.