Outback Steakhouse was the first chain to win my heart with curbside takeaway. When I realized that I could enjoy my favorite Outback menu items like Mac-A-Roo ‘N Cheese, Aussie Cheese Fries and the Bloomin’ Onion without having to put on clothes fit for public viewing I was ecstatic.
Now, only if I could have my groceries delivered to my car trunk. Unfortunately none of the supermarkets in my area offer this service yet, but more and more stores around the country are adding curbside pick-up options to their online delivery options.
The latest to get in on the take-away action – groceries included – is Walmart. As part of it’s Walmart To Go program, an on-demand shopping service offering home delivery of general merchandise, the retailer is now offering for customers to order their groceries online to be picked up curbside at the store. Well played, Walmart; you’ve finally found a way to get me to shop with you. I appreciate the convenience of Walmart – it’s well-documented that I am a fan of one-stop-shopping – but the locations in my area are always so busy the lines weave up and down the aisles. No Blue Light Special is worth braving those crowds.
The company is currently testing the idea in Denver, but I can definitely see it catching on and potentially broadening their customer base. Depending on the location, customers will either dial a phone number or enter an order into a touchscreen kiosk to alert Walmart staff they’ve arrived and their orders will be brought out. Walmart locations with a drive through pharmacy will allow customers to pick up their groceries at the very same window, further streamlining the shopping experience.
While I don’t normally try to minimize human interaction (too much online activity and I start to feel like Sandra Bullock in The Net), there are times when it seems I need a little space. For example, if I know I’m going to leave work early because I’m sick, I could place an order for cold medicine and Italian Ices (a sore throat essential) and grab my bags without ever getting out of the car. I’m home quicker and my fellow shoppers are spared my germs.
I’ll definitely give it a shot if it comes to my area. “Always Low Prices Brought Directly to My Door” is my kind of slogan. [Source]