Strategies for success in the e-grocery industry

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Title: Strategies for success in the e-grocery industry
Author: Niu, Tong
Abstract: US e-grocers have been testing different business models with varying results. This research conducted a meta-analysis of six online grocers (Peapod, Tesco, Safeway, FreshDirect, Webvan and Streamline) to identify the pattern of strategies that contribute to their performance. Each company's management capabilities, expansion and market selection strategy, order-picking method, delivery method, website design and Customer Relations Management (CRM) are explored and compared to identify the factors that provide these businesses with a greater chance of success. The findings suggest that knowledge of and experience in the grocery business play an important role in the success of an online grocer. Using a cautious and slow expansion strategy helps an e-grocer stay in the game. The store-pick model is suitable for most markets, while warehouse-pick may be used for markets with high customer demand. Each business model allows for strategic variations.
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Date: 2008

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