Halfway through the year of the pandemic, we’re living in a completely different world now. Novel Coronavirus has not just endangered human lives, it has hit the world economy hard and impacted several industries around the globe. It has turned markets around, giving rise to trends and disruptions we couldn’t have imagined.
Retail is clearly one of the most severely impacted industries by the pandemic. In the past six months, retailers and consumer goods manufacturers across the United States have dealt with fast-changing consumer buying patterns and numerous setbacks in ensuring smooth business operations.
What will be the Delivery Trends in 2020?
The pandemic has changed the way millions of Americans live, the way they work, the way they shop; and even the things they shop! As people hibernated indoors, online stockpiling of essentials skyrocketed, and the demand for fast and safe home deliveries increased tremendously. At the same time, to avoid crowded supermarkets, people are going for contactless shopping alternatives such as Buy Online, Pick Up In-Store (BOPIS), Click & Collect or Grab & Go.
Hyperlocal delivery is also emerging as a growing trend in America’s retail market, as more and more storekeepers are now adopting multichannel strategies to cater to customer demands. While big-scale E-commerce companies initially struggled to fulfill demands, local retailers stepped up to deliver groceries, fresh fruits, veg and meat, and other household items to people’s doorsteps during the lockdown. In unusual circumstances, local supermarkets and grocery stores were the most dependable source of essentials.
What is Hyperlocal Delivery Business all about?
In simple terms, a hyperlocal delivery business is an on-demand delivery service, wherein products are sourced and delivered within a small radius, usually within a few miles.
When a consumer places an order, the logistics provider procures the listed items from a local grocer situated near the customer’s address and completes the delivery within a couple of hours from placing the order. It is safe, fast, and highly convenient for the customer.
It is also quite easy for retailers to set up a hyperlocal delivery model. All they have to do is enlist their store on a delivery platform such as Instacart or Deliveroo, and orders will simply flow in.
Many retail stores have also established their own hyperlocal delivery services. The hyperlocal delivery model is a great way for retailers to enhance their business offerings and connect their mom-n-pop stores with a digital storefront to ensure customer loyalty, even during tough times.
Why is Hyperlocal Delivery Market an Instant Hit in America?
Hyperlocal delivery apps are reportedly making huge profits since the stay-at-home orders started in the US. San Francisco-based Instacart, for instance, sold $700 million worth of groceries per week in the first two weeks of April, an increase of 450 percent from December 2019.
A number of factors are responsible for the speedy growth of the hyperlocal delivery business in the United States. It ticks all the boxes – speed, safety, convenience, and real-time visibility. It also allows retailers to step up to meet the growing demands of the public, by integrating bricks and clicks into a profitable venture. All in all, it is a win-win for both retailers and consumers.
Also, America’s well-planned roads, strong transportation infrastructure, and clearly marked addresses make it easy for retailers to carry out hyperlocal deliveries smoothly in times of the pandemic.
However, the quick success of the hyperlocal business model in the US does not mean it could be a huge success in other developing countries. However, many companies across the globe are catching up to the trend and entering the hyperlocal delivery business; such as Swiggy and Zomato in India, and Gojek in Southeast Asia.
The hyperlocal business model is here to stay, even after the pandemic drifts away. It offers tremendous scope for growth in a number of sectors beyond groceries and essentials, such as food and beverages, medicines, home services, cabs, and hyperlocal logistics, to name a few. It is time for retailers to keep up with the trend and make the most of the hyperlocal delivery model to stay ahead of the competition in post-COVID-19 times.
Locus offers smart logistics solutions to businesses in retail, home delivery, and hyperlocal delivery markets. Get in touch with our experts for a quick tour of our solutions.