E-commerce giant Amazon is aggressively ramping up selection for grocery on its platform and focussing on speedier delivery as it looks to consolidate its position in the segment against rivals like bigbasket and Grofers. The competition in the segment is expected to intensify further as Amazon.in’s arch-rival, Flipkart is also firming plans to enter the grocery segment.
As part of its efforts, Amazon.in has re-branded its ‘Amazon Now’ service to ‘Prime Now’ and has invested in chill chain for products like fresh fruits, vegetables and dairy. Prime Now, an app-only service, is available to customers in Bengaluru, Mumbai, New Delhi and Hyderabad.
“Prime Now has an expanded selection of over 10,000 products… This includes selection across categories like fruits and vegetables, grocery, staples, meats, and home and kitchen,” Amazon.in said in a statement.
Amazon.in said the orders are fulfilled by Amazon through the Now Store, supermarkets like Big Bazaar, Aditya Birla More, and local specialty sellers like Licious and Pescafresh. Under Amazon’s Prime Now service, Prime users will get the benefit of express two-hour delivery between 6 am to midnight. Same-day and next-day delivery will be available for other customers in two-hour slots from 6 am to 12 midnight.
“We have invested in customised infrastructure of fulfilment centres (FC) for faster deliveries and chill chains to maintain temperatures at optimum conditions for leafy products and dairy products like curd and paneer,” Siddharth Nambiar, Head, Amazon India (Prime Now) said.
He added that the company has seen strong customer response and quantities ordered have grown by 90 percent monthly since the launch of the ‘Now’ store.
Amazon has committed US $500 million to its food retail venture in India. The statement said Amazon India has 15 fulfilment centres equipped with temperature-controlled zones to meet delivery timelines. Grocery segment accounts for a significant portion of the unorganised retail segment in the country.
With people becoming comfortable buying even milk and bread online, the online grocery segment is projected to witness a strong growth over the next few years in India.