Online shopping is an integral part of everyday life now, more than it has ever been. Younger generations grew up using computers and the internet to find information about products and to buy products. Online shopping makes life easier and therefore it affects the everyday habits of consumers all over the world.
The development of information technology and the utilization of the Internet in ordering goods have made it possible to develop new business models and service concepts for consumers. One example of new service concepts and better customer convenience is consumer direct electronic grocery shopping and home delivery service. In brief, electronic grocery shopping means ordering a basket of commodities over an electronic network. The home delivery of the ordered goods is then an additional service included in the service concept. Thus, one major precondition for using the electronic grocery shopping service is the customer’s Internet access.
Today, e-grocery is a growing phenomenon and any company not investing in their products online takes away the opportunity of being proactive and force themselves into being reactive. Hence, companies are aware of the key role played by Internet technology in the business process and find it increasingly important and necessary to adopt and use the Internet to enhance their competitiveness.
Compared to traditional grocery shopping, e-grocery requires new operating models in the supply chain. In the traditional grocery supply chain, goods are delivered to the store and customers perform the picking and final delivery to the home. For an e-grocer the major cost drivers are picking, packing, and home delivery transportation. The challenges for an e-grocer are to achieve cost-efficient operating models and to provide more convenience to consumers.
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