Amazon India has rebranded its app-only grocery service to Prime Now from Amazon Now, and has expanded its product category along with new time slots for the users.
Amazon said it is starting delivery between two new time slots: 6 am to 8 am, and 10 pm to 12 midnight for it Prime Now users. For Prime members, Amazon has launched 2-hour express delivery services anytime between 6 am to midnight. This service is currently available in Bangalore, Mumbai, New Delhi and Hyderabad.
Besides this, Prime Now has an expanded its product base, which includes categories like fruits & vegetables, grocery, staples, meats, and home & kitchen, as well as by supermarkets such as Big Bazaar, Aditya Birla’s More, and local speciality sellers like Licious and Pescafresh. Amazon said that the Now Store offers a full range of over 150 perishable grocery items. Users can also get products like electronics accessories, Home and Kitchen, soft furnishings, small appliances from mixer grinders to induction cookers, etc via Prime Now.
The company had started grocery delivery service in March 2015. The Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) had approved Amazon’s plans to stock and sell local grocery produce online in April 2017.
Amazon also operates its grocery service on its site via Amazon Pantry, where it lists mostly non-perishable items and follows its marketplace model. While on Prime Now, it stocks the items in fulfilment centres, hence offers faster delivery. Note that, Prime now is a separate mobile app.
In February, Amazon India had announced the opening of 15 new Fulfilment Centres (FC) for its grocery delivery service. The FCs are equipped with temperature controlled zones, to store perishable products such as fruits & vegetables (F&V), dairy products, chilled & frozen products. The centres store smartphones, laptops, kitchen appliances, other consumer electronic products, beauty products and household supplies.
Amazon’s rival in India Flipkart- which was recently acquired by Walmart- is reportedly planning an aggressive grocery push this year. According to this ET report, Flipkart will launch grocery services in five cities including Chennai, Mumbai, Delhi-NCR and Pune by July, and is expected to offer steep discounts like 25-50% on groceries.