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Would You Like That Retail Purchase Take-Out or Delivery? The 2014 Holiday Season Saw Brick-and-Mortar Retailers and Shopping Centers Increasingly Offering Same-Day Delivery Services

Necessity is the mother of invention, as they say, and online retailers such as Amazon and Zappos (each offering free 2-day shipping to their Prime and VIP customers, respectively) are certainly driving traditional brick-and-mortar retailers and shopping center owners and operators to make in-store shopping a more streamlined and convenient experience. In addition to "shoppable windows," same-day delivery services for purchases either fulfilled by or made at local stores provide traditional retailers and shopping center operators with some leverage against the online retail machine. Deliv is a young start-up company that provides such retailers with some ammunition to “out-Amazon, Amazon.”

Deliv is currently partnering with at least five of the country’s largest shopping center owners and operators and over 250 retailers, providing the customers of its partners with a less frenzied shopping experience, which is particularly attractive to consumers around the holidays. Deliv provides consumers with a couple more convenient alternatives to the quintessential mall shopping experience. For online shoppers, customers of participating retailers have the ability to shop online and have orders fulfilled at a local store (a benefit to the store’s landlord as well, assuming that such purchases factor into the base gross sales amount used to calculate percentage rent), picked up by a Deliv driver and delivered to the customer’s home that same day. Consumers who remain partial to the physical in-store shopping experience can spare themselves multiples trips to the car or the agony of lugging multiple bags and packages into cabs or onto buses or subways, by electing upon check-out to have their purchases delivered to their home by Deliv driver that same day.

In 2013, GGP was the first shopping center operator to partner with Deliv, offering its mall shopper the option of dropping off his purchases at a secure location within the mall as he shops, to be delivered to such shopper’s home later that same day after he finishes his shopping spree . By the 2014 holiday season, the number of shopping centers taking advantage of Deliv’s same-day delivery services increased from the initial GGP 2013 test group of 4 properties to approximately 30 shopping centers nationwide. The cost passed off to the consumer is typically comparable to standard shipping prices for online transactions, and around $5.00 per delivery for mall shoppers. For that small price (or even at no cost to consumers, if shopping centers and/or retailers run promotions covering the delivery costs themselves, which some did for their 2014 holiday shoppers), shoppers have free hands to maximize the amount of shopping they can fit into a single outing, as well as the flexibility to continue on with their days and maybe grab a bite to eat or a movie without having to lug bags into restaurants or theaters or make a dozen trips to the end of the parking lot to deposit their ever increasing loads.

For last minute shoppers, the same-day delivery services offered by Deliv and its retail and shopping center partners also safeguards against delivery delays that may be caused by inclement weather conditions between wherever the warehouse fulfilling orders may be located and the consumer’s front door, which was a major problem for many 2013 online holiday shoppers . Because orders are fulfilled locally – whether made online or in stores – the same-day retail deliveries provided by Deliv and its partners give those of us out and about or home online shopping on Christmas Eve the peace of mind that our goodies will be safely under the tree by Christmas morning, in spite of our own procrastination.

Projections for 2015 are that same-day retail delivery services, such as those offered by Deliv, will continue to be an upward trend. With the cost to retailers being relatively small – Deliv CEO, Daphne Carmeli estimates each delivery costs retailers approximately $5-$15 – it remains to be seen whether any retailers will endeavor to implement their own same-day delivery services directly to customers, or if it makes more sense for retailers to continue to use third-party, same-day delivery services, such as those offered by Deliv. More to come in 2015!

Related topics: Retail