Grocery delivery service in Palo Alto
As life, in general, gets faster, carving out time for chores such as laundry and grocery shopping has gotten increasingly harder, especially for working professionals and busy parents. It is no wonder, then, that a number of companies have sprung up, across the Silicon Valley, to try and fill this need gap and provide services such as groceries delivered to your doorstep. Can you imagine there are 8 great options for grocery delivery service in Palo Alto? While it is not surprising to see such an offering from companies like Safeway, North America’s second largest supermarket chain, it is interesting to note newer players like Google, Amazon and even Walmart, are now providing grocery delivery services under Google Express Shopping, Amazon Fresh, and Walmart Grocery respectively.
In order to compare and analyze the benefit of services like these, it is essential to look at their membership and cost structures, and the value they bring to the life of their customers.
Safeway has the definite advantage of being a major, well-respected player in this industry and being one of the largest as well as one of the oldest super-market chains. They started offering grocery delivery services back in 2000, and it stands to reason that their service should be a lot more streamlined and efficient by now. Safeway boasts a one-hour delivery window, to fit your tight schedule, with same day delivery possible if an order is placed before 8:30 am. The services are available seven days a week, between 9 a.m. and 10 p.m. local time, in most areas. Payment is made when ordering online, and their web portal boasts a “Shop by History” option, that shows all your in-store and online past purchases, making meal planning and shopping a lot easier! A full spectrum of products is available, including perishables. There is a 49$ minimum purchase stipulation, with the delivery charges being divided into two brackets: $9.95 on a purchase of $150 or more, and $12.95 on all purchases under $150. There may be small additions such as a fuel surcharge, which is 10c for every 10c increase in gas prices above $2.75 per gallon, bag fees, and any applicable tax. New customers are able to try this service for free using a promo code on their website!
Amazon is not new to online shopping and home-deliveries, but they are definitively new to the grocery business, launching Amazon Fresh in late 2007. The services they are offering, however, are definitely on par with their competitors. With Amazon Fresh, you can now get free same-day or early-morning delivery on grocery baskets above $35, with the ability to choose from ‘more than 500,000 items’ according to the company’s website. The best thing is, you are able to order almost anything: from fresh dairy products to meat, seafood, fruits and vegetables! To ensure that your products are delivered as fresh as possible, they come in totes and insulated coolers, packaged to maintain the correct temperature up to two hours after your delivery time-frame. Customers are able to use the Amazon website and mobile app to place orders at anytime and from anywhere. Customers can now sign up for a free 30-day subscription to try Amazon Fresh Prime.
Google has to be one of the best known companies in the world today, and it is this strong brand value that allows them to enter all kinds of different industries. Google Express Shopping offers one-day delivery on a multitude of items, including food products and groceries, from local stores and retailers including Walgreens and Costco. A wide variety is available, from tinned goods to grains, but fresh meat and milk, etc., are currently not available. Payments are made online, via ‘Google Wallet’. It is easy to sign up for a Google Shopping Express membership, with occasional free 3-month trial available on their website – expiring at various times. As a member, delivery is free on orders above $15 before taxes and free. A fee of $3 is applied to orders below $15. Overnight delivery is also offered in some areas. Google has a great partnership with Costco for grocery delivery service in Palo Alto.
The retail giant is trying to get a piece of the action with their grocery delivery and pick up business in the name of Walmart Grocery. They started piloting the product since 2013 in the Denver area, and are rolling out nationwide in locations where there are existing Walmart Super Centers nearby. In Palo Alto and other parts of the Bay Area, there is a minimum of $50 to be spent on orders to facilitate delivery directly to one’s home or business. The option for pick up at a Super Center location is also available. Deliveries are made next day from 9:00am until 11:pm and there is either a 2 hour reserve time slot at a delivery cost of $7-9, or a 4 hour reserve time slot with lower delivery fee of approximately $5. There are lots of items to choose from including dairy, produce, meats, household supplies and most of what is offered at a Super Center including alcohol, for which someone over the age of 21 with a valid ID and age confirmation document. If the pick up option works better for your schedule, then their pick up operations are located on store premise. As soon as you alert Walmart Grocery of your arrival, your goods will be presented to you upon showing ID.
Ever thought about having someone take the stress out of grocery shopping and providing that lifeline you have been waiting for? Welcome to Envoy! Envoy is a cross between personal shopper and grocery genie. Your Envoy can stock your kitchen at a monthly membership fee of Ease, ocassionally ($10), Joy, every other week ($45) or Bliss every week ($60). They are a relatively new company, and presently offer grocery shopping at Trader Joes and Whole Foods, and soon at Costco. You will have a 2 hour window to choose from to have your envoy visit you, and that will be your regular meeting day and time, until you request to change it. You can create your shopping list on a computer, smartphone or tablet, using search features, and then saved to your profile, which makes reordering easy. You can also provide your neighborhood envoy with helpful tips and photos to make choosing your items a breeze.
When you sign up for Envoy, your first month’s subscription will be charged as well as the credit card used to set up your account, will be saved in your profile. So when your envoy goes shopping for you, your credit card will be automatically charged for the grocery amount with no markup, and you will receive the original receipt from the store.
This is a very different service from those I have discussed thus far, because it is not associated with a single, well-know retailer. Instacart is instead a service which links you to individuals in the area, who offer their services to go buy your groceries and deliver them to you! I think of it as Uber for your groceries! Instacart claims to deliver groceries in as little as under an hour of ordering them, depending on the people ‘on duty’ around you at that time – their fastest delivery was 12 minutes! They are not affiliated with a single store but work with almost any store close to where you are. The first delivery is free, and the charges after that are $3.99 for two hour delivery and $5.99 for one hour deliveries. You can order produce and perishables as well. If you sign up for Instacart Express, there is a free trial for the first 14 days, and you get free delivery on 2 hour & scheduled grocery deliveries over $35. After the trial period, the yearly subscription for this is $99. Service is available 9 a.m. to midnight, everyday!
Good Eggs is a free delivery system that connects local farmers to customers directly, supporting the former and providing fresh, wholesome food to the latter. The goods that are available vary by day, as per the production and harvesting schedules of the farmers and food makers, and a two-day minimum notice period is required as all food is harvested or prepared once the order is placed, to ensure freshness. Items may be packed in insulted sleeves to ensure they stay cool, and you may also choose to pick your order up from a convenient location instead of getting it delivered. Delivery is free if you are flexible with delivery timings, but costs $3.99 if you specify a certain hour. If you do not want to pay a delivery charge, then there is free delivery on orders over $30. Also, the cost of the actual groceries may be higher in some cases, because it is coming straight from the farm and is of a higher quality than what you would often find is a supermarkets. Service is available every day, except national holidays, from 12 p.m. to 9 p.m.
If all else fails and you decide that you want to pick up your own shopping without having to do it yourself, then meet Curbside. Curbside is a new app company that allows you to find, buy and pick up goods your local stores and stores like Target, curbside, without leaving your car. It is now available throughout most Target stores and a few other stores in the Bay Area, and best of all it is a free service with no markup.
All of these companies, as well as others that offer the same kind of services, definitely make life easier for us. With the promotions some of them are offering, it is easy enough to try them out, and see what suits you best!