Take a minute to think about the usual grocery shopping ritual: the drive to the store, the time it takes to shop and – most of all – the effort of comparing brands to get the best deals and fit a set budget. What if this process could be shortened, if not altogether eliminated?
With Grocery Run and other online grocery shopping sites, the answer is that it is perfectly possible. In fact, it is a growing reality. A few keystrokes and mouse clicks here and there, and in a few days the postman will ring the doorbell with groceries in hand. Shopping for food has never been so energy and time-efficient.
Grocery Run is the brainchild of the biggest Australian online shopping website CatchOfTheDay.com.au. It is a daily deals site offering huge savings for non-perishable food items and other household goods. Launched in 2011, the site was introduced to the online consumer market as an alternative buying experience to the one offered by brick-and-mortar supermarkets. With regular consumer savings of around 50% (and savings of up to 80% on a good day), it’s a welcome discovery for the average shopper – who often has no choice in being subjected to the prices in run-of-the-mill supermarkets.
So how exactly does Grocery Run afford to keep its deals priced low enough to entice customers to make the change? Easily – by relying on its huge member base and high turnover rates to attract suppliers.
Grocery Run currently has a strong membership of 1.4 million. Within a two-day period, it can reportedly sell an impressive 2,837 facial moisturisers, 5200 toothbrushes and 10,000 deodorants. As an added bonus for its suppliers, the site buys stock from them that supermarkets will not take and even acts as a second buyer in the event of supermarkets cancelling their orders due to excess stock or nearing use-by dates. For customers, this business setup means more selection and a higher chance of getting all the right deals to suit their needs.
Though its success is evident, there are some minor details to consider when committing to Grocery Run. It is only open to shoppers every week from Wednesday to Friday and it sells only 200 to 300 different products within this time period. There’s also a shipping fee to add to the total expense, but it’s only a reasonable $11 (since Australia Post is one of Grocery Run’s distribution partners). Furthermore, Grocery Run cannot function as a one-stop shop for consumers because the deals vary depending on what suppliers need to clear from their warehouses. As a safety measure and to avoid logistical nightmares, Grocery Run cannot sell eggs, milk and meat.
Given all these details, Grocery Run isn’t exactly the future of fresh food shopping – at least for now. It does, however, offer an alternative to the usual grocery experience and is innovative in its approach. There’s certainly room for improvement but GR still caters to a huge market has success firmly locked in its sights.