Online e-grocery ordering and delivery platform Mercato has announced a subscription offering that provides unlimited free same-day deliveries for members in 25 states, a direct shot at the AmazonFresh program and other competitors.
Called Mercato Green, the program comes in two flavors. Neighborhood covers deliveries up to three miles from the store, and the City plan covers deliveries to 10 miles away. Under both, Mercado offers a free 14-day trial, after which the cost is $8 per month for Neighborhood and $23 per month for City, billed annually. Deliveries are handled by partner DoorDash.
By comparison, an AmazonFresh subscription costs $14.99 per month, on top of an annual Prime membership of $119 or $12.99 per month.
“We’re making local grocery delivery more accessible to everyone,” said Mercato Founder and CEO Bobby Brannigan in a release. “We all lead busy lives and time is often our most constrained resource. A simple trip to the grocery store can take an hour, or more, and many people go multiple times a week. Mercato Green helps reduce the time people spend on grocery shopping and increases access to these great stores. Since the monthly cost of the program is around the price of a single grocery delivery, it’s a great value as well.”
The U.S. e-grocery market was estimated at $14.2 billion in 2017, and is projected to reach $29.7 billion by 2021, according to Statista. As is the case with ecommerce generally, e-grocery represents a small but rapidly growing portion of the overall market. Grocers continue to weigh the cost/benefit economics of online order delivery via a third-party service like DoorDash, Instacart or other gig-driven providers vs. curbside pickup.
Mercato provides same-day delivery of online orders from 750 independently-owned grocery and specialty food stores in the U.S., through connections to thousands of freelance drivers via DoorDash. Retailers integrate Mercato with their POS system and can click and add available items and update prices, and define delivery windows for customers. It also provides marketing services including online, email, social and in-store.