Google Shopping Express opens to all consumers in the San Francisco area.
Thad Rueter , Senior Editor
Google Inc. said today it has expanded its same-day delivery service and launched a mobile app for the service.
Google in March said it was testing its Google Shopping Express in the San Francisco Bay area. Today the search advertising giant said all consumers in a delivery zone from San Francisco to San Jose can use the service. Consumers make online purchases from participating retailers and have their deliveries in hand within hours, Google says. Consumers can select delivery windows that run as late as 9 p.m.
Retailers that have previously joined Google Shopping Express include Staples Inc., No. 2 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide; Office Depot Inc., No. 7; Target Corp., No. 18; Toys ‘R’ Us Inc., No. 30; Walgreen Co., No. 36; and American Eagle Outfitters Inc., No. 64. The test also involves such local merchants as Blue Bottle Coffee, Palo Alto Toy & Sport and Raley’s Nob Hill Foods. New retailers include Guitar Center (No. 50, via Musician’s Friend Inc.); Recreational Equipment Inc., or REI, (No. 67) and Whole Foods Market, says Tom Fallows, Google Shopping Express product management director, in a blog post.
Google is offering a six-month free trial for consumers who sign up for a Shopping Express membership. That offer expires on Dec. 31. Google has not yet released final prices for membership. For consumers who do not want a membership, the fee runs $4.99 per store, a Google spokeswoman says. That means a consumer ordering, say, three items each from Target and Staples would pay $9.98, or two charges of $4.99. Google did not offer other details about pricing or costs.
Retailers taking part in Shopping Express either did not immediately respond to request for comments or were vague about their experiences with the program. “Staples always tests different ways to service our customers,” says a spokesman for the office supplies chain. “We don’t share numbers or results of active pilots.”
Google also said today that is has launched mobile Shopping Express apps for Android and iOS (Apple) devices.