Hi! I'm Dane Carlson, and welcome to the Business Opportunities Weblog. I've been publishing this website, by myself, and sometimes with the help of others for over twelve years now. You'll notice two things about this site right away:
On a recent evening in this southern French city, Maurice Berrayah parked his black Renault sedan outside a gray warehouse, and a Chronodrive supermarket employee packed his trunk with a week’s worth of milk, wine, eggs and other foodstuffs his wife had ordered online earlier in the day. “We don’t have to go grocery shopping anymore,” the 42-year-old computer programmer said gleefully as he inspected two baguettes being loaded into his car, reports The Wall Street Journal.
He is part of a wave of French consumers who have embraced a hybrid online shopping model devised by Chronodrive that ditches the expensive delivery option used by early Web grocers and retains what the company’s founders felt shoppers wanted: an easy online system to order groceries that the consumer can pick up, prepacked, at his convenience.
Traditional online grocery shopping wasn’t working in France—prices were about 15% higher than at traditional stores—a bigger premium than in the U.S. and Britain. Delivery times, usually limited to working hours, were inconvenient, and costs were high—home-delivery fees are about €12, or $17—not feasible in a country where it is more common for people to pick up groceries several times a week, rather than loading up once a week as is typical in the U.S.
Chronodrive’s founders took a cue from an American way of life: the McDonald’s fast-food drive-through. They wanted to apply its strengths to grocery shopping by providing fast service without making the customer get out of the car.
Photo by thetalkingmirror.