Retailer pilots online-to-curbside service


A Meijer worker scans and bags items for an online shopper as part of its curbside pick-up service. Courtesy Meijer

A retailer has launched a pilot program at one of its stores that allows customers to order items online and pick up their hand-picked orders curbside — without leaving their cars.

Grand Rapids-based Meijer, which operates more than 200 supercenters and grocery stores in the Midwest, said today that it has launched Meijer Curbside at its Grand Rapids store located at 1997 E. Beltline Ave. NE, at Knap Street NE.

Curbside process

More than 23,000 grocery items and general merchandise are available for the pick-up orders, including prepared meals, specialty cakes and pre-order party trays.

Meijer Curbside customers select a preferred pick-up time between 7 a.m. and 9 p.m. daily.

The shopping service allows a customer to place an order up to three days in advance.

An order of 12 items or less can be ready in an hour, and an order of 13 items or more can be available in three hours.

Meijer said that specially trained team members hand select each item and shop according to special instructions.

The team then loads the order into the customer’s vehicle upon their arrival in the designated pick-up area.

The team uses a mobile device to take payments and Meijer mPerks digital coupons.

During the pilot program, Meijer Curbside is available for no charge, but following the initial phase, the service will cost $5 an order.

Michael Ross, VP of customer marketing and emerging technology at Meijer, said the new pick-up shopping service allows the retailer to help customers save time by remotely shopping for items throughout the store and choosing their personal pick-up times.

“The way customers shop for food is changing,” Ross said.

He added that the service is “one more way we are striving to find solutions to everyday challenges and bring more convenience to our customers.”

Future rollout

Meijer Curbside has been offered to a test group of customers since late March, according to Joseph Hirschmugl, public relations manager, Meijer.

Throughout the pilot program, Meijer is accepting feedback from customers based on their experiences to continue to make improvements.

Depending on the success of Meijer Curbside at the Grand Rapids location, Meijer is considering expanding the service to stores located throughout Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois and Kentucky later this year. 

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