Micro-fulfillment centres

Grocery retailers are eyeing micro-fulfillment systems to fill orders online more quickly, according to a Wall Street Journal story, which notes such systems can move out as many as 4,000 orders a week but can still be housed in the back of stores or in urban areas where space is a premium.

While online orders still only account for a fraction of the grocery market in the U.S. and in Canada, Forrester research notes that online sales for food and beverage are rising quickly and is the fastest growing e-commerce segment, according to research firm eMarketer.

Grocery stores are “weighing short-term strategies” notes the Wall Street Journal story, such as using employees to go through the aisles and pick up online orders “against costly investments in large centralized distribution centres that use robotics to cut down on handling and other expenses.”

Read the full story.

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