For many of us, going to the grocery store is not the joyous, leisurely stroll that we often see in the movies, with a lovely lady traipsing through a genteel farmers market, smelling each piece of fruit and gathering fresh flowers in a handheld woven basket. Going to the grocery store after work any day of the week is like the seventh circle of hell (which is violence, by the way), as you’re hungry, tired and not very motivated to shop, much less see other people.
We decided to order all our groceries online, walking through the process at four different places to see what our local online options were like. We had a wide range of groceries and made sure to include produce, which makes many online customers nervous to order, as people are picky about their produce.
Here are the top options we found in Louisville for online grocery shopping:
Advance time: About 24 hours
Selection: Comprehensive, over 40,000 items are online
Pickup/delivery: Designated parking pickup spots and a one-hour window for pickup. No delivery.
Payment: Payment at pickup. Can use coupons at this time.
Membership requirement: Just a Kroger Card account, which is free.
Service fee: $4.95 per order. Fees for the first three orders are waived.
Called a “game changer” by many, Kroger has their entire store selection (over 40,000 items) online now and available for pick up. Once you login to your account and register your Kroger card, Kroger displays a list of your favorites and things you usually buy, as it has culled all this information from your previous shopping excursions. This cuts your selection time down substantially, since most of us regularly buy the same items.
After you have placed your order, there is about a 24-hour wait time to pick up your groceries. You select a one-hour window to pick up and are given a choice of which pickup time works best for you.
The actual pickup process is the ultimate in convenience. There are designated parking spots in the front of the parking lot marked for ClickList customers. When you arrive, you call the phone number on the parking lot sign and notify them of your arrival. A representative comes out with your groceries — bagged and ready to go — and places them in your car. You may give the representative any coupons you have and they will process your payment right there on their tablet. Only credit or debit cards are accepted and there is a $4.95 service fee but this fee is waived for your first three orders. You have no reason to ever leave your car and the entire pickup process takes less than five minutes.
Our groceries were packed with intention: frozen items together, refrigerated items together, produce together, meat packed in plastic and alone, dry goods together. You can buy beer here for pickup, as well.
The Kroger representative told us that they were working on shorter processing time, aiming for same-day service, as well as eventually having a delivery option. They have a comprehensive frequently asked questions section, which we strongly suggest you read before you order — just to get your bearings.
Advance time: Orders placed before 11 a.m. can be picked up that day
Selection: Good but limited, with over 1,000 items online
Pickup/delivery: They offer both at all four locations.
Payment: For delivery: pay for online when you submit your order; for pickup: pay at store
Membership requirement: None
Service fee: $5.95 for pick up. $12.95 for delivery. Fees waived for all first-time orders.
ValuMarket has had curbside pickup and delivery since 2007, making them trailblazers in the online grocery world. This service is available at all four of their locations (their Hurstbourne location closed in June). Orders placed before 11 a.m. can be picked up or delivered the same day and, while there is less of an online selection than what is in the store, the basics all are available.
There is curbside pickup at all of the locations except the Mid-City Mall location, as the parking lot is shared with many businesses and they are not allowed to designate spots. You simply pick up your groceries at the service desk there, which means you do have to park and go inside. At the other locations, pull up and use the call box outside the store, letting them know of your arrival. They then will bring the groceries out to you.
We ordered a selection of deli meats, some produce and some refrigerated items. All were correct and the produce looked nice. You can also buy beer online from ValuMarket and they have a great selection. Note that you will be carded upon picking up your order.
Advance time: 5 to 7 days
Selection: All dry goods, canned goods, household items, pet food
Pickup/delivery: Ground shipping UPS 5 to 7 days (but only took two days)
Payment: Paid online at the time of purchase
Membership requirement: Must be an Amazon Prime member
Service fee: $5.99 flat fee
Amazon Prime Pantry is reserved for Amazon Prime members and offers dry goods, household items and other pantry essentials in regular sizes. They are delivered to your door via UPS for a $5.99 flat fee.
We stocked up on back-to-school lunchbox and snack items such as chips, snacks and crackers, and then took a spin around the canned goods aisle. Another perk? They sell high-end pet food that you usually cannot find at your regular grocery store. At a flat rate of only $5.99, we were determined to fill up the box. The prices were similar to the grocery stores, with many items being on sale. Word to the wise: Be wary of the sizes of items you are buying. We ended up buying a case of soup rather than just a can and a very small peanut butter jar rather than the big size we normally would buy. That was operator error, completely!
Fortunately for Louisville, what was promised as a 5- to 7-day delivery was actually only two days — and that’s because we are an Amazon hub. Don’t quote us on this but it feels like delivery time is always less here. The box was massive, as you can see in the picture, so you definitely get your money’s worth on the shipping fee of $5.99.
This is a great way to stock your pantry for things that you don’t need right away and for backup items that you need throughout the year. Tip: Create your grocery list right on Amazon and keep the items in your cart until you are finished and ready to buy. It’s easier than keeping a written grocery list you are sure to lose!
Advance time: Can customize your bin up until 10 a.m. the day before your scheduled delivery day.
Selection: organic produce, locally grown produce and some groceries
Pickup/delivery: Can designate the interval, but weekly or bi-weekly
Payment: All paid in advance, credit card is on file
Membership requirement: No membership fee but you must sign up as a member and keep a credit card on file
Service fee: Included in the bin fee each week
We have loved Green BEAN Delivery since they first came on the scene here in Louisville. It is a great way to get fresh, organic produce and natural groceries delivered to your door, year-round. More importantly, you can completely customize your order from week to week so that you can get exactly what you want. Also, you do not need to be present to receive the bin. Simply leave the old empty bin on your front doorstep and they will replace with a new, full one.
Produce is always what is in season, as well as some basics that they source from other areas. Their grocery selection is small but has great quality meat and dairy. Decide which size delivery you would like and how often you want it delivered. All bins, technically, are the same physical size but contain different amounts of produce. For example: A family of five can live pretty well from a medium bin, delivered once every two weeks.
Prices range from $20 to $42 per bin and the payment is automatically deducted from your credit card. If you need to change your order or cancel it for a week, it’s easy to do online. In addition to great produce delivered to your door, they offer on their website great recipes and insights on what to do with your produce.
While all of the options are different, we suggest trying each to see which one works best for you. Regardless of which you choose, with these great online grocery shopping options in Louisville, there is no excuse for a bare cupboard!
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