The Kroger Co. is looking into ways to get online orders to its shoppers faster and more efficiently by testing out Uber deliveries at several of its locations.
According to Chain Store Age, the supermarket giant expanded its home shopping model last year, adding more than 420 ClickList and ExpressLane locations. This boost gives the company more than 640 online ordering locations. But while ClickList allows shoppers to place orders online, customers need to go to the store to pick-up their items.
To come up with a solution for the last-mile equation and make the online ordering process easier for its customers, Kroger decided to look into deliveries via Uber. If the testing goes well, the program could be expanded later this year.
But some industry experts are not as excited about the grocer’s partnership with Uber, citing the ride-hailing company’s issues with labor and wage discrepancies as a potential issue. Kroger is looking into other home delivery methods but didn’t go into any detail about what those could be. In the meantime, the company continues to expand its digital services.
“More and more customers are connecting digitally with Kroger,” said Rodney McMullen, Kroger’s chairman and CEO. “We are leveraging refined customer insights from 84.51 [data analytics], as well as years of online shopping experience from both Vitacost.com and Harris Teeter, to develop a sophisticated understanding of our customers’ behavior when shopping with us online, in-store and both.”