Here’s a look at the changes that are expected to accelerate.
“This is an quake rattling through the grocery sector as well as the retail world”, said Mark Hamrick with Bankrate.com.
The deal comes after Seattle-based Amazon spent almost a decade trying to find a way into the fresh-food delivery business through various endeavors, without much success.
“Different corporation taking over can hurt, it can help, we’ll see”, says s Ishmael McIntosh.
Meyer said the “house brands”, usually generic – and often cheaper – alternatives to brand name products, are gaining popularity, and that consumers could see even lower prices on those items if Amazon decides to pursue that route, because Amazon is known for its low prices on items.
“Mingling with the people in the city – you do that when you’re in the grocery store”, said Patricia Merrill. Some chains have classical musicians play as shoppers wander from wine sections to sushi stations or meet friends for a bite.
Is Amazon.com the only bidder for Whole Foods?
Bezos can be right as the grocery chain does have the potential to outdo rival Walmart, the world’s largest retailer, who has been dominating the grocery market and has also stepped-up its online retail section.
Amazon had looked at Whole Foods previous year but initially decided not to make an offer.
“All stores are not going away, it’s just a matter of finding the store/online equilibrium”, Credit Suisse analysts said in a note. Walmart has about 4,700 US locations, with plans to offer curbside grocery pickup at 1,100 by the end of this year.
It’s also not clear if Amazon will sell the technology to other companies – for the sake of being able to profit off this vertical when the competition’s already sealed off from its customers anyways. Instacart, which operates in 69 markets, counts partners including Costco, Publix, Target and Wegman’s.
In just 23 years, Amazon has grown from selling us books online to permeating into every aspect of our lives. A year and a half ago, Mackey says he had a dream that Amazon bought Whole Foods Market, and he told his wife about it when he woke up that morning. By combining the Prime Now program with one thousand or more retail locations, Amazon has solved both the problem of how to ship across state lines as well as the proximity to the consumer challenge.
As for what the grocery industry should do to compete, Digenan suggested fellow brick-and-mortars should improve their service without having to increase their prices.