Home delivery is the next big thing for supermarket chains.
Clearly, ordering with your smartphone or computer can save a lot of time. And it can also reduce impulse shopping. But how much will you pay for this convenience?
Checkbook.org, the independent, non-profit consumer organization, went shopping to find out.
“You’re going to pay a lot more for grocery delivery than you would in the store,” said Kevin Brasler, Checkbook’s executive editor. “With some of these stores, you’re only going to pay about $100 more a month for a typical family of four. With others you’re going to pay a lot more than that.”
Chekbook’s shoppers found that Shipt’s markup at QFC is 14 percent. Instacart’s markup at Costco is 23 percent, “wiping out much of Costco’s price advantage,” Brasler said.
And what about the quality of the fresh produce you get?
“A big obstacle to grocery delivery for a lot of consumers is that somebody else has to pick out your produce. We took a look of orders of produce from the services and I’d say about half the time our shoppers were pretty disappointed with what they got,” Brasler told me.
Some supermarkets now offer a hybrid service where you can order online and pickup at the store. That way, you don’t have to be home waiting for the delivery and you can check the quality of the produce, poultry, fish or meat before you leave the store.