By Amye Anderson
UCBJ Managing Editor
ALGOOD – Beginning later this month, the Algood Walmart will begin offering free grocery pick up for customers who place their orders online.
There’s still plenty of work to be done before the grand opening of the store’s new pickup department, slated for May 29.
“We’re really excited about it,” said Jason Jones, store co-manager. “All of the associates are pretty pumped up about it.”
Starting Saturday, employees will begin a two-week long training session to prepare for the new service; learning the use of the hand-held devices, learning proper shopping procedures to ensure items maintain peak freshness and correct storage temperatures so that customers receive the best quality goods.
Grocery orders can be placed up to seven days in advance using the free Walmart Grocery app. Once the grocery list is complete, the customer then chooses a location and a preferred pickup time. Free same-day pickup is available on orders placed before 1 p.m. and Walmart promises personal shoppers will choose only the freshest items, “or your money back.”
Jones says customers will have an opportunity to review and approve produce and other perishables to ensure they meet the customers’ satisfaction. A statement on Walmart’s website adds that shoppers opting for pickup can also stock up on everyday essentials, such as laundry detergent, diapers, pet supplies, wipes and paper towels through the service.
Customers won’t be charged for their order until they approve the items onsite during pickup. And, they won’t see any additional fees or price markups on products for the service.
With the addition of the grocery pickup service, the Algood Walmart’s pickup location will move to the front of the store, allowing site-to-store customers to collect their orders without walking to the rear of the building per the current layout.
That’s all changing, Jones says. As part of the ongoing construction and renovation work to establish the grocery pickup area, a new general pickup desk will be complete with a self-service kiosk, a waiting area complete with seating will provide guests with a comfortable place to wait while their orders are retrieved.
Grocery pickup procedures, however, will be a little different as customers won’t even have to enter the building to collect their items. To the right of the exterior storefront, a special parking area immediately next to the building, features seven numbered parking spots with a special phone number to call.
Piloted in Denver in 2013, Walmart began testing the idea of curbside grocery pickup in 2015 in select markets. In September 2017, the brand celebrated it’s 1,000th online grocery pickup location. The chain estimates more than 90 percent of Americans live within 10 miles of a Walmart store and that they serve more than 140 million customers each week.