Wegmans plans to expand to Delaware
- A Wegmans location has been proposed in Greenville, Delaware, an affluent suburb of Wilmington, the Rochester Democrat & Chronicle reported. The new Wegmans still has to be approved by county government, but the grocer appears to have garnered local support. It would be the first grocery store in Delaware for the popular grocer.
- If approved, the new location is projected to open around 2022. A spokesperson for Wegmans told the Democrat & Chronicle that while store design plans aren’t finalized, the location will be around 115,000 square feet and include the same features of other new Wegmans stores.
- Wegmans has also announced that it will launch curbside grocery pickup at all of its stores in its hometown of Rochester, New York, by the end of February. Wegmans first introduced click-and-collect in Rochester last March. Shoppers must spend a minimum of $10 to be eligible for pickup, and the orders will be fulfilled through Instacart.
Wegmans has been heavily focused on expanding in the mid-Atlantic and the Northeast recently, with plans for three new stores in 2019, each in new markets. The grocer has announced several plans for new locations in the past few months, with new stores slated for cities in North Carolina, Virginia, New York and Washington, D.C. By the end of the year, if all goes as planned, Wegmans will have more than 100 stores operating in the U.S.
The small but affluent suburb of Greenville is a bit of a departure from some of its other target locations. Many of Wegmans' new stores are focused on larger cities and suburbs, but there seems to be a growing demand for the grocer in towns and cities of all sizes as some grocers make their way to more urban areas while others are introducing stores to smaller communities where there’s increasing demand.
Competition in markets where Wegmans operates is strong — with grocers including Publix, Aldi and Whole Foods vying for customers’ food dollars. Trader Joe’s and Wegmans also have a relatively strong rivalry, each taking turns at being America’s favorite grocery store. There is likely enough business to go around, especially in a market like Greenville, as long as Wegmans maintains its reputation for quality and a top-notch shopping experience.
Wegman is showing up a bit late to the game with its curbside pickup announcement, as many other grocery stores have well-established click-and-collect programs. The chain, however, inspires deep loyalty and has one of the strongest store experiences in the industry, so getting out ahead on click-and-collect was not a priority. If the service continues to resonate for time-strapped consumers in Rochester, look for stores in other markets to adopt it this year.
Wegmans, which launched e-commerce in 2017 with Instacart to fulfill and deliver online orders, has chosen to use Instacart to provide its curbside pickup services as well. Instacart made the announcement a few months ago that it would be launching curbside pickup for several partners across the country. Clearly Wegmans sees value in its partnership with Instacart and is confident in outsourcing the logistics of e-commerce to the company.
With both its new click-and-collect option and the continued expansion of its stores to more markets, it’s clear that Wegmans is confident in its position and will continue to be a top player in today’s grocery scene.
- Rochester Democrat & Chronicle Wegmans expanding to yet another state
Follow Jessica Dumont on Twitter