DETROIT — Want to ditch the shopping cart? Grocery delivery services are growing rapidly, but shoppers need to decide if the convenience is worth the higher cost.
Big companies like Amazon and Walmart are expanding grocery delivery, as are regional players like FreshDirect. Grocery chains like Kroger and Safeway are working with third party delivery services like Instacart or developing their own services.
Groceries have been slower to migrate online than books, clothing and other items. Online grocery sales make up 3% of the $800 billion food retail market, according to a recent report by Deutsche Bank. That’s expected to climb to 12% by 2025 as services grow and stores offer more options, like online ordering for pickup.
Offerings vary. Customers can pay per delivery or with an annual fee. Orders under $35 generally cost more. Some companies promise delivery in one or two hours. Others, like Peapod, offer next day service. Delivery during peak times may cost more.