Amazon has launched a curbside grocery pickup service enabling Prime members to pick up their Whole Foods orders without leaving their cars. Shoppers placing their orders via the Prime Now app can select free pickup in as little as an hour for orders of $35 or more, or they can pay $4.99 for pickup in 30 minutes or less.
The service will first be offered in Sacramento, Calif. and Virginia Beach, Va. Whole Foods locations, with plans to expand to more cities later this year.
"Amazon, synonymous with home delivery, is leveraging its grocery brick-and-mortar investment as it battles for a greater share of wallet,” said Sylvain Perrier, president and CEO of Mercatus in a statement. “The company’s latest initiative, grocery pickup in 30 minutes or less from Whole Foods, is taking on Walmart. Not only at Amazon and Whole Foods, but among grocery retailers in general, there’s a great deal of experimentation going on to see what sticks with consumers. What’s becoming clear is there’s no one path to retaining customer loyalty. To compete today, grocers need to offer a selection of services and fulfillment options that cater to a variety of shopper preferences."
Walmart offers curbside pickup at 1,200 stores, with plans to expand the service to an additional 1,000 locations this year. On the delivery front, Walmart’s goal is to reach more than 40% of U.S. households in 100+ metro areas by the end of 2018.