Since making its e-commerce debut with Instacart last fall, Grocery Outlet Holding Corp. has rolled out the online grocery delivery service to almost all of its stores.
Instacart said in a blog post on Thursday that nearly 400 Grocery Outlet stores in California, Oregon, Washington and Pennsylvania now offer its same-day delivery service. The rollout follows a six-month pilot at 68 California stores that Grocery Outlet announced in October, marking the value grocer’s entry into the online grocery arena.
“We remain excited about the long-term potential of our e-commerce initiative and partnership with Instacart enabling us to expand our customer reach,” Eric Lindberg, CEO of Grocery Outlet, said in a statement. “Following positive results from our pilot, we recently completed a rollout to nearly all stores. While it’s only been a few weeks since the rollout, we are pleased with the smooth execution and the favorable response from independent operators and customers so far.”
The service enables Grocery Outlet customers to order groceries, daily staples and other products for delivery from the chain’s independently owned and operated stores through the Grocery Outlet storefront on Instacart’s online marketplace and mobile app. Instacart personal shoppers pick, pack and deliver the orders within customers’ designated delivery time windows, including as soon as an hour.
Overall, Emeryville, Calif.-based Grocery Outlet has about 415 stores in California, Washington, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Idaho, Nevada and New Jersey.
In Grocery Outlet’s fiscal 2021 second-quarter earnings call in August, Lindberg had told analysts that talks with potential third-party online grocery providers were under way and one or more tests would launch within months. He noted that the food-at-home trend driven by the pandemic swayed the grocer — whose “extreme value” business model and customer proposition rely largely on the in-store experience — to rethink e-commerce. Retention of Grocery Outlet’s “treasure hunt” experience in the online realm was a key factor in the chain’s e-commerce launch with Instacart, the companies said.
“Grocery Outlet has provided millions of customers with an affordable, quality selection of fresh produce and pantry staples for more than 75 years. We know accessibility matters, and our successful pilot proved the value delivery in as fast as an hour provides Grocery Outlet customers,” commented Chris Rogers, vice president of retail at San Francisco-based Instacart. “As consumers continue to seek value, selection and convenience, we’re proud to support Grocery Outlet as the retailer continues to build an engaging online experience for their customers.”