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Lidl is expanding online delivery into North Carolina


Lidl will expand its online ordering and delivery pilot with Shipt to include three additional markets in North Carolina and South Carolina ... Jersey — some observers are questioning Lidl’s real estate choices. “Unfortunately, in some areas they ...


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post share tweet Dive Brief: Lidl will expand its online ordering and delivery pilot with Shipt to include three additional markets in North Carolina and South Carolina, according to a news releaseThe discounter, which launched online shopping in the Greenville, South Carolina market back in October, will begin serving the new markets on Dec. 7. In North Carolina, Lidl will provide online ordering and fulfillment in Raleigh, Winston Salem and part of CharlotteIn South Carolina, it’s expanding to the Spartanburg, Rock Hill and Indian Land metro communitiesAll told, Lidl’s online service will reach 500,000 households. To promote the service, Shipt is discounting its annual membership from $99 to $49 for shoppers who sign up ahead of Dec. 7. $(document).ready(function() { window.responsive_ads.prepend_hybrid_ad_html("#advert_hybridad1_mobile", '\u003Cp class\u003D\u0022story\u002Dbelow\u0022\u003EStory continues below\u003C/p\u003E', 1); }); $(document).ready(function() { window.responsive_ads.prepend_hybrid_ad_html("#advert_hybridad2_desktop", '\u003Cp class\u003D\u0022story\u002Dbelow\u0022\u003EStory continues below\u003C/p\u003E', 1); }); Dive Insight: Lidl clearly likes what its seeing from its online ordering pilot so farThe discounter launched with Shipt in Greensboro, South Carolina in late October — a somewhat surprising move, considering company executives dismissed online shopping pre-opening, stating they wanted to focus on the store experience first. That was, of course, before Amazon bought Whole Foods and dozens of major chains around the country put their online shopping ambitions into overdriveInstacart, Shipt’s key competitor, has grown from just 30 markets at the beginning of this year to more than 150According to Packaged Facts, online grocery shopping accounts for a small percentage of transactions now, but sales are expected to grow 27% per year over the next five years. Profiting from online fulfillment is very difficult right now, but will Lidl be able to gain new customers through the service? It depends on how attractive its proposition is to shoppersThe stores haven’t been open very long, and foot traffic hasn’t been stellar in these first five months, judging by traffic dataLidl is also going up against players like Kroger and Walmart that are aggressively expanding and promoting their online ordering services. Still, Lidl does have an attractive price proposition, and its nonfoods selection could gain some traction during the holiday season. Industry analysts have been critical of Lidl’s assortment and promotions to dateSome say it needs to lighten up on its nonfoods selection, while others point out it's focusing too much on pantry items where it isn’t price competitive. Meanwhile, as the company expands into new territories — it just recently opened its first store in New Jersey — some observers are questioning Lidl’s real estate choices. “Unfortunately, in some areas they’re not on Main Street, they’re not even on outer Main Street,” Jeff Metzger, publisher of Food World, a trade publication that covers the Mid-Atlantic region, recently told Food Dive“They’ve got some tertiary locationsThey’re all over the place in their store selection” There seems to be a consensus among industry observers that the company needs to change things upLidl’s e-commerce expansion may be an acknowledgement of that factThe discounter has also altered its produce promotions, offering discounts on select items throughout the week as opposed to twice a week, as Winsight Grocery Business recently reported. Lidl has touted its ability to quickly adapt to market conditions, so the company may yet find its footingSources have also told Food Dive that the discounter’s appeal could be more of a slow burn as shoppers get used to its unique brands and price propositionA recent survey by consulting firm Oliver Wyman found that Lidl struggles with consumer awareness, but gets very high marks from existing customers. So while it's clear the company has some work to do, it’s way too early to count Lidl out. Recommended Reading: Globe Newswire Shipt Expands Delivery Pilot with Lidl Follow Jeff Wells on Twitter share tweet post email print Filed Under: Grocery Marketing Top image credit: Lidl GET THE NEWSLETTER Subscribe to Food Dive to get the must-read news & insights in your inbox. Email: Select Newsletter: Food Dive Topics covered: manufacturing, packaging, new products, R&D, and much more. 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