Kroger Pilots 30-Minute Grocery Deliveries in Cincinnati Area

| Mike O'Brien

In the never-ending quest for delivery immediacy, grocer Kroger is testing out 30-minute deliveries in its home market of Cincinnati, cutting the promised time from Amazon’s Prime Now in half. Called Kroger Rush, the service costs $5.95 per order, with the first order free, and requires an app download.

FedEx Expands Pickup Network with Dollar General Partnership

| Mike O'Brien

FedEx has partnered with discount retailer Dollar General, offering dropoff and pickup services at 8,000 Dollar General stores by the end of 2020, giving it rural penetration it lacked. Along with its own stores and partnerships that also include Walgreens, Kroger and Albertsons, FedEx now has a network of 62,000 locations.

Time to Deep-Six Omnichannel and Focus on Experience

| Seeta Hariharan

It’s about time retailers drop the term omnichannel from their vocabulary. Creating an omnichannel experience is not even that difficult. What is much harder is giving your customers a reason to shop, a belief that you are looking out for and providing them with unique experiences that they appreciate.

Kroger Selects Orlando Area for Second Automated Fulfillment Center

| Mike O'Brien

Kroger plans to build the second of 20 automated distribution centers in partnership with UK grocer Ocado for fulfilling ecommerce orders in Groveland, FL. The state-of-the-art FCs, built by Kroger and powered by Ocado’s automation technology, are just part of Kroger’s innovation push including driverless and same-day delivery.

Cause of Ocado Fire Highlights Concerns About Automated Warehouses

| Mike O'Brien

The Feb. 5 fire that completely gutted an automated Ocado grocery fulfillment center in the UK was caused by a failure in an “ambient grid” storing food at room temperature, raising concerns about what happens in these types of facilities when disaster strikes, according to a Bloomberg report.

Tackling the Challenges of Store Inventory Accuracy

| Mike O'Brien

If stores are the weak link in inventory accuracy, how do you improve it to avoid stock-outs and dissatisfied customers? Steve DeNunzio of Ohio State’s graduate logistics program covers the challenges and solutions in this MCM CommerceChat podcast. He’ll also lead this discussion at Ecommerce Operations Summit in Columbus, OH.

Kroger Finds Its Voice … Ordering

| Mike O'Brien

Grocery giant Kroger is adding voice ordering to its online arsenal, interestingly hitching its wagon to the Google Assistant voice app and not to Amazon’s Echo, at six of its associated brands, the company announced. See what else Kroger is up to as well as other tech skirmishes in the escalating online grocery wars.

Kroger and Walgreens Join Forces in Cincinnati-Area Pilot

| Mike O'Brien

In the continuing saga of strange bedfellows teaming up to combat the threat of Amazon, a Kroger/Walgreens pilot in northern Kentucky outside Cincinnati allows shoppers to pick up Kroger orders at 13 select Walgreens and purchase Kroger products while there.