The same day delivery space is hot right now, with startups gaining significant interest from investors, and big properties trying to break in.
One of the most notable names in the space is Google, and its same-day delivery service, called Google Shopping Express.The service, which was unveiled back in March, initially was only available in certain sections of San Francisco, is now getting a big expansion; it will now be coming to entire Bay Area, it was announced on Wednesday.
Customers "from San Francisco to San Jose" will now be able to purchase items online from local retailers and get their items during a time window of their choosing.
In conjunction with the expansion, Google also announced that it is launching a new shopping app, on both iOS and Android, that will make it easier for its customers to order on the go.
Some of the retailers Google is working with include Target, Walgreens, Staples, American Eagle, Toys R Us, and Babies R Us, as well as local stores such as San Francisco’s Blue Bottle Coffee, Raley’s Nob Hill Foods, and the Bay Area’s Palo Alto Toy & Sport.
Keeping up with the competition
Being able to cover a wider area will certainly help Google compete in an increasingly crowded space, especially against its most notable competitors, like eBay and Amazon.
In fact, both companies have a leg up on Google; eBay Now, which was launched last year, also covers a wider area than Google. That service, which was only available San Francisco, San Jose and New York upon its initial launch, was expanded to the Bay Area Peninsula, Brooklyn and Queens in July.
The eBay Now service allows users to order items from retailers in their area, including Finish Line, GNC, Home Depot, Macy's, Office Depot, RadioShack, Target, Toys R Us, and Walgreens. They will have their packages delivered to their door, typically within an hour.
Amazon Prime is probably the competitor to beat, though, especially since it comes with access to unlimited TV episodes and movies at no extra cost, and only costs $79 a year.
Both Google and eBay charge per order. For eBay that is $5 for the entire order, while Google charge $4.99 per store; if you decide to buy items from two stores it will cost you roughly $10. While eBay has a minimum charge of $25, which may increase during periods of peak demand, there is no minimum order charge for Google.
Google is offering its customer six months of free unlimited deliveries but "we haven't announced what the membership fees will be after that yet," a Google spokesperson told VatorNews.
While Google is a bit behind some of the other large e-commerce sites, it also has to contend with the smaller companies which devote themselves entirely to same day delivery, which are beginning to pick up some interest from investors.
Even though it has some major competition, it is probably still a good idea for Google to roll this service out slowly. Not only does it require agreements with the stores in question, there is also a question as to whether or not people actually care about getting their goods so quickly.
Only 9% of people say that same-day delivery would improve their shopping experience, compared to 50% who said lower prices and 75% who said free delivery, according to a survey conducted by The Boston Consulting Group in March.
(Image source: http://googlecommerce.blogspot.com)