Today’s grocery market is cut-throat in terms of competition, both online and offline. Kroger has been a successful offline grocer since it was established in 1883 in Cincinnati, Ohio. It is also North America’s largest supermarket chain by revenue ($115.34 billion for the fiscal year 2016). But, things clearly aren’t the same as before. With competitors like Walmart and Amazon breathing down their necks, an e-commerce platform for Kroger is a must to battle rivals.
Realising that digital footprint is the future for grocery retail, the supermarket giant revealed Kroger Ship, an e-commerce platform where customers can order from a range of products on the website ship.kroger.com and have them delivered to their doorstep. Kroger Ship’s home delivery is free of cost for orders exceeding $35 and carries a $4.99 fee for smaller orders. During its trial period, Kroger has announced that customers can shop from a curated assortment of 4,500 Kroger brand products and more than 50,000 other groceries and household items. Yael Cosset, chief digital officer at Kroger said, “Kroger Ship is our next step in developing an effortless experience that allows our customers to shop when and how they want. Our new service is just another way we are redefining customer experience as part of Restock Kroger, bringing more convenience and options to shoppers across the nation.”
Besides staple household items and customer essentials, Kroger Ship will process bulk orders, international foods and flavors, health and wellness products and a host of other specialty items. A Ship customer will be offered exclusive deals and savings including a host of promotional codes, discounts and offers along with a handy “set and save” subscription which will slash 5% off daily essentials. They can also earn fuel discounts and save up to $1 per gallon by purchasing online. Ship customers will be offered free shipping in its initial stages, with no minimum purchase, along with a one-time promo code which will slash 15% off their order value. Kroger is set to expand its Ship service to more markets soon.
With this venture in place, Kroger Ship walks hand-in-hand with the brand’s 2,800 grocery stores and delivery service from 1,200 locations, not forgetting the 1,250 curbside pickup locations as well. It also goes without saying that Kroger’s online presence gives them an added edge in this immensely competitive market.
Frank Bruni, vice president of supply chain and procurement at Kroger confirmed, “We are still working on our expansive logistics and fulfillment infrastructure to support the progress of Ship; with the unflinching help of our brands and Kroger’s manufacturers and suppliers, our idea is to build a seamless e-commerce system that provides our customers a large number of products and allows Kroger to ship nationwide.”
With Ship, Kroger is moving ahead with a strategy to boost its own e-commerce capabilities. Kroger saw digital sales surge 90% in 2017 and it is projected to grow its online business from 1.7% of sales at present to 5% by 2022.