Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Walmart adds online delivery service in select Philly markets

According to a company news release, Walmart began online grocery delivery service late last month to Philadelphia and select suburbs, including King of Prussia, Warminster, Kennett Square, West Berlin and Cinnaminson.

Customers in these areas can shop for items on Walmart's website and choose a delivery time, including same-day delivery for an added fee.

Walmart plans to offer its online delivery service in 100 metropolitan areas by the end of the year.

Business is booming at first Amazon Go stores

Initial reports about the Amazon Go store concept have been positive, and sales appear strong. In fact, advisory firm Brick Meets Click estimated that sales per square foot at the Seattle store are about $2,700. That's nearly $5 million in annual sales for an 1,800 square foot, cashierless store.

According to Brick Meets Click, "Amazon Go stores produce more sales per square foot than virtually any other retailer except Apple and a few other specialty stores."

The company also estimates that the inventory turns over around 50 times per year, which is four-to-five times more than at other retail operations.

Furthermore, digital marketing firm inMarket believes Amazon Go stores are more of a threat to fast-casual restaurants and convenience stores than to supermarkets. Peak visitation hours at Amazon Go stores in Seattle and Chicago over the past 60 days have been on weekdays during lunch and breakfast.

"Amazon Go's combination of ready-to-eat and ready-to-cook food choices challenges both grocers and restaurants," reported Brick Meets Click Co-Founder and Managing Partner Steve Bishop. "With no lines or waiting, it's easy to see why people would stop by twice a day - first to grab lunch and later to pick up a dinner portion on their way home."

There are six Amazon Go stores open, all with the company's "Just Walk Out" technology, and more locations are planned. In fact, Bloomberg reported in September that Amazon is mulling plans to open up to 3,000 Amazon Go stores by 2021.

Lidl willing to lease sites, build smaller stores

Following an initial growth period that fell short of expectations, Lidl once again has a full head of steam as it searches for sites in Greater Philadelphia and beyond. When the German retailer began looking for sites a few years ago, it would only purchase property that could accommodate its 36,000 square foot freestanding prototype.

Now, with some U.S. real estate and operating experience under its belt, the company is employing a more flexible approach. In addition to buying property and self-developing, Lidl will lease space and consider smaller formats.

As reported by winsightgrocerybusiness.com, a Lidl real estate brochure being distributed in the U.S. shows a variety of store formats, including ground floor commercial spaces in urban buildings, and dark supermarket spaces in shopping centers. Store sizes range from 15,000 to 36,000 square feet.

"The brochure is tailored to the U.S. and conveys our openness to different formats and possibilities," said Lidl Spokesperson Will Harwood.

Of the 58 U.S. stores now operating, all share a similar 36,000 square foot prototype, and all were ground up construction. The company's first leased property is scheduled to open soon in Staten Island, NY.

Friday, October 26, 2018

Study shows that consumers still prefer visiting supermarkets for groceries

Despite all the hype around online ordering and delivery services, a recent study conducted by TABS Analytics found that conventional supermarkets and Walmart are overwhelmingly the top destinations for regular grocery shopping.

Of the 1,000 U.S. adults surveyed, 75% said traditional grocery stores were the retail venues they regularly visited to buy food and beverages (more than six times per month), and 57% cited Walmart.

However, compared to last year, 2% fewer people named supermarkets and Walmart as the places they regularly shop for food and beverages, and 2% - 4% more customers named dollar stores, drug stores and discount grocery stores. Target, Trader Joe's and Whole Foods saw gains as well.

Just one in six consumers said they regularly shopped online for groceries.

Whole Foods taking a small bite out of Trader Joe's traffic

In the past year, Whole Foods has increased foot traffic at the expense of Trader Joe's, Walgreen's and Dollar Tree, according to Sense360, a California-based company that tracks location data from millions of smartphone users. The data covers Whole Foods locations that are within a mile of competing stores.

In addition, the number of shoppers who visited a Whole Foods at least six times in the past year increased to 11 percent in August as compared to 9 percent a year earlier, according to surveys by consumer products research company Tabs Analytics.

As for the competition for grocery dollars between Amazon / Whole Foods and Walmart, a former Amazon executive said that Amazon is "willing to experiment and be totally misunderstood for long periods of time. Walmart is built to deliver pallets to 4,000 stores and Amazon is built to deliver packages to millions of homes. Who do you want to bet on: the pallet people or the package people?"

Friday, October 19, 2018

Trader Joe's proposed for Cherry Hill

Plans presented to Cherry Hill officials earlier this month reveal that a Trader Joe's store is proposed for The Shoppes at Garden State Plaza. TJ Maxx and HomeGoods are proposed as well.

If approved, the new stores, along with a Shake Shack restaurant, would be built on Haddenfield Road and Garden Park Boulevard, between Pier 1 and PNC Bank. Previous plans had called for townhouses to be built on that location.

Several projects in the shopping center complex are still pending, including a Costco.

The Market Place at Garden State Park, which is connected to The Shoppes, includes Wegmans, Home Depot, Barnes & Noble, Best Buy, Dick's, Bed Bath & Beyond, Christmas Tree Shops, and several other retailers and restaurants.

Walmart poised to surpass Amazon as online grocery leader

A report released last week by Deutsche Bank Securities found that as a result of Walmart's investments in e-commerce, the company may overtake Amazon in online grocery market share by the end of the year.

"The retailer is reaping the returns of many years of investment in e-commerce and customer service," said Deutsche Bank Analyst Paul Trussell. "We believe the company is now in position to accelerate market share gains in grocery while also growing EBIT dollars and expanding ROI."

According to Walmart, the company offers online grocery delivery service in over 50 markets and more than 2,000 pickup locations. Walmart projects that it will have pickup sites in 430 markets, covering 69% of U.S. households, by the end of January 2019.

In 2017 Amazon had online grocery sales of $2 billion for a 12.5% market share. Walmart was close behind with sales of $1.78 billion and an 11.1% share.

Trussell believes Walmart could reach a 17% online grocery market share by 2025.