There’s all kinds of drama unfolding these days on the Loblaw stage.
For one, there’s the follow up to the supermarket behemoth’s springtime purchase of drugstore behemoth, Shoppers Drug Mart.
For another, there’s Loblaw’s recent announcement that it’s going to reinvent itself further with the introduction of an online grocery purchase service.
This latest development would see Galen Weston’s longstanding brick-and-mortar superstar extend its presence into cyberspace with the offering of click-and-collect shopping on its website. Having placed an order and paid for it online, customers would then be able to pick up their bagged purchases at the nearest Loblaw or Shoppers store.
Canada’s largest grocer introduces this option on the heels of similar announcements by Amazon and Walmart. Still, the Loblaw model is distinct from the other two for a couple of reasons. For one, shoppers placing orders with Loblaw will be able to choose from the full complement of the supermarket’s wares, which includes fresh produce and frozen food — high-margin categories that are conspicuously absent from Amazon and Walmart’s stash.
For another, however, Loblaw is proposing a pick-up service only, whereas its most prominent digital competitors are prepared to deliver your electronically requisitioned goods right to your door.
Loblaw’s intends to start testing this concept at three Toronto stores later this year. If it’s successful, corporate brass has assured, it will quickly be rolled out to the balance of the company stores.
“We believe this is going to be a fundamental aspect of e-commerce in Canada,” Loblaw executive chairman Galen G. Weston, said after Loblaw’s annual meeting on May 1.