What is in this article?:
- Virtual Success: Wellness Promotes New Hope for Online Retail
- Are You Experienced?
- Out of the Box
- Sidebar: The Amazon Question
“I’ve always described food as the last great frontier in e-commerce. There’s no other $800-billion-dollar industry that e-commerce hasn’t touched yet.”
— Chad Arnold, president and CEO, Door to Door Organics
Sidebar: The Amazon Question
There’s been a lot of buzz about plans for AmazonFresh now that the online giant is poised to open regional distribution centers. Founded in 2007, the service has languished in beta testing in and around the company’s home base of Seattle.
Even with the new hubs being built to improve shipping times and better serve major metropolitan areas, analysts remain skeptical that Amazon’s legendary logistical prowess will translate to perishables.
“I think the online grocery delivery business is going to be too expensive, even for Amazon,” observed Sucharita Mulpuru, vice president and principal analyst, Forrester Research. “It’s a completely different logistics infrastructure.”
Amazon has long shipped grocery items nationwide and as such, already has its hand in the food business. Whether it moves into fresh foods depend on whether the company can improve on margins. It’s the same challenge that’s faced every other supermarket retailer that’s tried home delivery.
“It’s been a challenge finding a logistics infrastructure that’s cost-effective, finding the products people want to buy and developing a loyal customer base that chooses to purchase with you,” said Mulpuru.
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