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Tops ramps up grocery pickup

Expansion builds on rollout of Instacart home delivery

Tops Friendly Markets plans a major expansion of online grocery pickup that will bring the service to more than a quarter of its stores.

Williamsville, N.Y.-based Tops said yesterday that it has launched Tops Grocery Pick Up, powered by Instacart, at 16 more stores in western New York. The regional grocer introduced click-and-collect last October at three stores — in Hamburg, Williamsville and Tonawanda, N.Y. — and said the strong response from customers led to a broader rollout of the service.

The new curbside pickup sites are at Tops supermarkets in Derby, Hamburg, Orchard Park, East Aurora, Buffalo (four stores), Amherst (two stores), Cheektowaga, Niagara Falls, Depew (two stores), Lockport and Batavia.

“This expansion is significant for Tops as it assists shoppers from Buffalo to Batavia, Hamburg to Niagara Falls, making their shopping experience that much easier,” Edward Rick, director of consumer marketing and digital at Tops, said in a statement.

In the coming months, Tops expects to offer pickup at another 22 stores, including in the Rochester and Syracuse markets, which the company said would make the service available at 41 of its 159 stores.

To use the click-and-collect service, Tops customers order their groceries at the chain’s branded Instacart website (TopsMarkets.com/Instacart), select a pickup time at a Tops store offering the service, and check out online. Instacart personal shoppers then pick and bag their order and prepare it for pickup. Once their order is ready, customers will receive a text with pickup instructions, which include a designated Tops Grocery Pick Up parking spot. When arriving at the store, customers text “here” to inform Tops, and a store associate brings the groceries to their vehicle.

The pickup service expansion is part of a $40 million store upgrade plan that Tops announced in mid-April. The company said it expected to have click-and-collect available at about 20 stores by the end of May.

At the same time, Tops has brought Instacart same-day delivery to most of its stores. Home delivery, in as soon as an hour, is now available at around 130 stores, reaching more than 90% of the retailer’s customer base. Tops announced its partnership with Instacart in November 2017, first launching service in the Buffalo, Rochester and Syracuse markets.

To support the rollout of Tops Grocery Pick Up, the chain is offering customers $10 off their first order of $35 or more by using the promo code “TopsPickUp.”

Tops’ core market is upstate New York, but the chain also operates 17 stores in Pennsylvania and three stores in Vermont. The company also has five franchised locations.

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