Google Is Getting Into the Grocery Delivery Game
Updated 1:00 p.m. ET
Google wants to be more than just a place you go to search for a nearby grocery store – eventually, it could eliminate the grocery trip altogether by bringing the items on your shopping list directly to you.
The search-giant will test a delivery service for fresh food and groceries in San Francisco and another yet unnamed U.S. city later this year. Bloomberg first reported the news, which Google later confirmed. The pilot-service would expand upon Google Express, which already delivers merchandise including dry foods, to customers. Like Instacart, Google is teaming up with partners such as Whole Foods Market and Costco to help facilitate delivery, cutting out the logistic-headaches and high costs of operating a warehouse.
Google is entering an already crowded field, where players include old guard FreshDirect as well as AmazonFresh and Instacart. And these are just the companies that specialize in groceries – a host of companies, including Minibar and Saucey, specialize in the on-demand delivery of grocery adjacent products, such as alcohol. In addition, ride-sharing apps including Uber and Gett have flirted with entering the on-demand grocery-delivery game.
It makes sense that everyone wants a piece of the pie. According to Bloomberg, not only is the industry a $10.9 billion one in the U.S., but it's slated to grow 9.6 percent annually through 2019.