Family Dollar Teams With Instacart

Stores to deliver same day and sometimes in only an hour.

February 09, 2021

CHARLOTTE, N.C.—Family Dollar has partnered with Instacart to provide consumers with same-day delivery from more than 6,000 stores—sometimes as quickly as within an hour. The partnership marks the first by a national dollar-store chain and a same-day delivery platform, according to RetailWire.com.

Owned by Dollar Tree of Chesapeake, Va., Family Dollar has enjoyed strong sales during the pandemic. Same-store sales for Family Dollar climbed 6.4% in the third quarter. “Providing same-day delivery is another example of our efforts to better meet the evolving needs of our Family Dollar shoppers,” said Mike Witynski, president and CEO, Dollar Tree.

The announcement follows a 275-store pilot launched last October, which also involved Shipt and came alongside a test of in-store pickup. Now, the company is planning omnichannel investments for Dollar Tree, Witynski said.

“The beautiful thing is, we are a 15,000-store chain, and we’re conveniently located in their neighborhoods. And should [consumers] want to buy online and pick up in-store or get it delivered at home, we’re going to have that capability as well,” he said. “But it’s really early for us.”

Instacart’s roots remain in grocery, but the company announced agreements with several non-grocery retailers as online delivery became critical during the pandemic. Newer partners include 7-Eleven, Best Buy, The Vitamin Shoppe, Sephora, Bed Bath & Beyond, Staples, Dick’s Sporting Goods and Five Below. With Family Dollar, Instacart now delivers from more than 45,000 stores, up from more than 25,000 in January 2020.

However, some retailers are unhappy with Instacart’s high commission charges (often more than 10% of every transaction) and their control over customer interactions. Larger grocers like Kroger, Albertsons, Aldi, plus the grocery divisions of Walmart and Target, have reportedly moved to using their own employees to pick and package groceries for online orders.

NACS Research last year released its landmark “NACS Last Mile Fulfillment in Convenience Retail” study, outlining the opportunity for convenience retailers to grow sales and expand customer reach. Download it free here.

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