Customers can stay inside their vehicles as they have their groceries loaded by pickup staff.
Photo: Courtesy of Walmart
Photo: Courtesy of Walmart

Walmart believes online grocery pickup service will save you time

Of all the activities we cram into a week – work, school, raising children – grocery shopping sometimes gets squeezed in whenever we can get it done.

Retail giant Walmart is trying to change that by offering customers, free, online grocery pickup service. In Metro Atlanta they have doubled down, going from four stores offering the service in Fall 2015 to eight stores in Spring 2016. Walmart plans to now take their testing phase to an expansion phase across several markets in the U.S.

Customers on Twitter have offered some comments on the service:

"Literally just went food shopping for a family of 7 in five minutes online thanks to Walmart grocery pickup."

"Thanks Walmart for the new grocery pickup service! I've got a cold and it really helped this momma out!"

No one can deny that Americans are truly pressed for time with the jet speed lifestyles they are living. Walmart spokesman Ravi Jariwala, stated that customers do trust Walmart to save them money, but they are also finding that Walmart services can help save them time. He said that 90 percent of customers who are using the online grocery pickup service are repeat users.

"Grocery shopping used to take 1 1/2 to 2 hours on the weekend between loading up the kids, getting the kids out of the car, doing the shopping, packing the kids back in the car, getting the groceries in the car," he said. "All of that is now condensed into just a few minutes. So customers have more time back in their day. They can do date night with the spouse. They can help the kids with homework. They can pursue their own hobbies and activities, or anything that they want."

Jariwala would like to see customers in the Atlanta market try the new time-saving online grocery pickup service. He said that customers are talking about the service as being a gamechanger and a lifechanger. Jariwala answers a lot of questions about how the service works and where it is located:

Q: How does the process work?

A: It's very, very simple. Customers can come online to from their computers or their smartphones. We even have a dedicated Walmart grocery app. They can then go ahead and browse and shop for anywhere between 30,000 and 35,000 grocery items. These are the same grocery items that you find in our typical Walmart stores and supercenters. All of those prices online are the exact same low prices prices as you'll find in-store. Customers can pick the items that they want and then during checkout they will select a designated pickup time and location. We use "Personal Shoppers", who are full-time dedicated Walmart associates whose entire job is to focus on grocery pickup. They are highly trained to select the freshest produce and the choicest cuts of meat as if they were shopping for their own family.

When it's your time to pickup your order. You would pull into a designated parking space reserved for you. There is going to be a sign with a phone number posted in front of each parking space. You would call and say, "I'm here to pick up my order." That signals one of our personal shoppers in the back. We wheel it out to you. You pop your trunk. Your groceries are loaded and then you're on your way. So what used to take up to sometimes two hours on a busy Saturday or Sunday — you're now done with it in five minutes or so. This really puts the customer in control of how, when and where they shop.

Q: How long has this service been around?

A: Walmart started testing this service back in 2011 in about five markets. We tested in San Jose, Denver, Northwest Arkansas, Phoenix, and Huntsville, Alabama. Last fall, we moved a little bit away from our testing phase and began expanding. We expanded to an additional 17 or 18 markets at that time, one of which was the Atlanta market.

Q: When did the online grocery pickup service arrive in Atlanta?

A: It arrived in Metro Atlanta in October 2015. Atlanta is the market right now that we are (exclusively) offering the service in within the state of Georgia.

Q: Is this service free of charge or are there fees?

A: One of the beautiful things about this, is that there are no hidden fees. You're saving time and you're saving money!

Q: Is there a minimum dollar spending amount?

A: There is a $30 minimum spending amount.

Q: What are the metro Atlanta locations that offer the service?

A: Marietta, Roswell, two locations in Alpharetta, Lithia Springs, Snellville, Stockbridge and Dallas

Q: What is the time process with this pickup service?

A: Pickups can be scheduled 7 days a week and up to three weeks in advance. Sameday pickup is available. Orders placed by 1 a.m. will be available for pickup starting after 8 a.m. Orders placed by 10 a.m. will be available for pickup starting from 4 p.m.

Last note on this new online grocery pickup service is that first-time users of the service will get $10 off by using the code: REALEASY.

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