In this file:


         Amazon passes H-E-B, Trader Joe's for top spot in Dunnhumby grocer rankings

         Amazon to expand grocery concept to Seattle area

         Amazon Shutters Prime Pantry Division




Amazon passes H-E-B, Trader Joe's for top spot in Dunnhumby grocer rankings


Sam Silverstein, GroceryDive

Jan. 11, 2021


Dive Brief:


o   Amazon rode its strengths as a digital merchant and its ability to serve customers quickly to secure the No. 1 spot in the 2021 Retailer Preference Index, an annual survey of the U.S. grocery market conducted by market research firm Dunnhumby.

o   The e-commerce giant also benefited from the perception among consumers that it offers fair prices as it surpassed H-E-B and Trader Joeís, which both held the top position in previous rankings and nabbed the No. 2 and No. 3 spots, respectively, on this year's list. Wegmans, Aldi, Market Basket, Samís Club, Costco and Publix filled in the remaining slots among the top 10 retailers in this year's survey, which reflects responses from 10,000 households in the United States.

o   ​Amazon surged resoundingly to first place during a year when customers placed an especially high priority on speed and e-commerce as they sought safe ways to stock up on groceries.


Dive Insight:


After years of honing its reputation as a digitally advanced retailer that gives people access to an enormous range of products without requiring them to set foot in a store, Amazon found itself in an enviable position when peoplesí concern about the novel coronavirus pandemic seized control of shopping behavior.


Between offering a reliable online shopping experience and offering checkout-free shopping at its growing number of brick-and-mortar stores, Amazon gained momentum in 2020 at a rate that placed it well ahead of its competitors, Dunnhumby found.


Those abilities gave Amazon an edge when compared with retailers that depended on measures such as extra sanitation at checkout counters and one-way aisles, which slowed people down as they looked to leave stores with their purchases. ďFar more than any other preference driver, speed to shop is correlated with safer to shop,Ē the Dunnhumby team wrote in its report.


The pandemic disrupted what Dunnhumby referred to as the competitive trajectories of a range of food retailers. Food Lion, Target, Kroger and BJís Wholesale Club also moved up in the study, which recorded consumers' opinions about 57 retailers. Walmart and WinCo Foods, meanwhile, recorded the most significant drops.


While Target and Walmart are often seen as archrivals and share Amazon and Aldi as top key competitors, Target outdid Walmart when it came to peopleís sense of how long it took to complete a shopping trip, Dunnhunby found. That gave it a clear advantage over Walmart even though the latter retailer is generally known for offering what Dunnhumby refers to as a higher "value core."


Dunnhumby said it believes shoppers will...





Amazon to expand grocery concept to Seattle area


Pamela Riemenschneider, Blue Book Services

January 12, 2021


Just as I got my first look (second-hand, through a colleague) at the Amazon Fresh store in Naperville, IL, the Seattle-based company is making more moves in grocery.†


First, it is cancelling Prime Pantry, a subscription service that delivers pantry items like laundry soap and canned goods, directly to homes.†


Second, the company is reportedly expanding the Amazon Fresh brick and mortar grocery to Washington state. Amazon currently operates five Amazon Fresh stores, four in California and one in the Chicagoland, with two more in Illinois and one more in California currently planned to open soon.†


Itís not surprising to see the concept expand to several markets, relatively quickly. Amazon Go had a similar trajectory.†


What is surprising, at least from the photos, is how Ö not differentiated the store seems from photos and videos. Sure, it has a techy grocery cart that allows you to skip the checkout, but even Walmart has scan and go technology.††


Sure, it has Alexa stations to answer questions and ask for deals, but the last thing I want everyone in a store to do is hear me argue with Alexa about something a well-versed clerk would know in two seconds.†


We all know this is just the start of what Amazonís in-person grocery empire *could* be, but, man, I really feel like every move isnít quite enough to draw me away from my regular routine.†


Whatís going to be the *it* factor that sways consumers to break with their usual routine and shop Amazon Fresh instead? Itís not going to be quality. Amazon already owns Whole Foods. I canít imagine itís going to be low prices with the high overhead all of this technology brings.†


It doesnít appear to be freshly-made restaurant-quality meals.†


So far, itís just a store...





Amazon Shutters Prime Pantry Division

Optimizing its operations, the retailer shutters this division to make way for more grocery innovations


by† Anne Allen, Deli Market News

Jan 11, 2021


Recognized for its commitment to innovation and growth, Amazonís latest move to shutter its Prime Pantry delivery service comes as a pivotal turn in strategy as the retailer looks to delve deeper into the fresh grocery sector. With the launch of its new AmazonFresh and Amazon Go store fronts, the closure of its delivery service marks a clear shift as the retailer continues to expand its footprint in the skyrocketing grocery market.


Amazon announced on Wednesday, January 6, that the service would no longer be available and instead prompted customers to utilize its Amazon Fresh platform, according to an article from Bloomberg.


The Prime Pantry feature was originally launched in 2014 with a monthly subscription fee of $5 for Prime members of the site. The service was designed to encourage shoppers to stock up on bulky, expensive-to-ship products through orders that could be easily shipped in one large box...


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