Uber for Groceries

Published 15th June 2015

While I was in Miami a few weeks ago I got the opportunity to use Uber for the first time. I’ve been raving about it ever since. “It’s the future” I keep telling people. Anyway this lead to a kind of lightbulb idea moment for me last week. I’m sharing it here mainly so that I remember it but also because I’d love to see someone do it.

Uber for Groceries: An app that lets you setup a shopping list and then ships it straight to your door every week. You automatically get charged via the card linked to your account (ala Uber). If you need to add a one-off item to your list for that week just use the app, search for it and tap “+”. Similarly if you don’t need an item one week that is on your weekly list just use the app, find the item and tap “not this week”. An Uber-like map view when your shopping is out for delivery would also be cool.

There are several notifications that would be useful:

  • A weekly “your groceries are about to be ordered, do you need to make any changes?” type reminder
  • If something on your list cannot be fulfilled
  • When your shopping is out for delivery
  • When your shopping is 5 mins from your house

There are two main ways I see this happening. I’m aware many supermarkets already offer online ordering and delivery but I’m not sure any have really taken it to this level so if they were smart they could implement something like this. The second way is more like Uber, where a distributed network of private drivers utilise a “click & collect” style of pick up and drop the groceries off at your house.

Update — Instacart is already doing this in SF and is valued at $2 billion (source).