There are hundreds of Woolworths stores scattered throughout the country and the majority welcome customers will open arms, hoping that they will open their wallets wide open. But there are a handful of Woolies stores that do not welcome any customers.
Known as ‘dark stores’, these Woolworths outlets have been set up purely for the purposes of fulfilling online shopping orders.
We are addicted to the convenience and price advantages of online shopping and after trying out Coles for a few months, we’ve been using Woolworths’ online shopping services for a few years now.
Aldi may offer certain price advantages over the major retailers but the fact that they don’t provide online shopping is a major downside.
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As reported in Yahoo! Finance, Woolworths now has over 600 trucks on the road doing online deliveries around the country.
But while online purchasing is all about convenience for the shopper, Woolworths needs to make sure there is a chain of staff to fulfill the order, pack them and deliver them.
In order to make it easier to collect together online orders, Woolworths has set up dark stores or Customer fulfilment centres.
It is understood that these stores are basically identical to a normal supermarket, with different areas for frozen foods, fruit & veg and pantry products.
However, the big difference is that there are no customers in these stores and they exist solely to prepare online orders.
Because regular shoppers are forbidden to enter these stores, the personal shoppers can quickly and efficiently put together online orders, effectively saving time and money for Woolworths.
At present, there are three of these types of stores – West Footscray in Melbourne, Mascot in inner Sydney and Brookvale in northern Sydney.
Not all online orders are fulfilled in these stores but we suspect that this is the direction the retailer is heading towards.
Do you order your groceries online? Tell us in the comments below.
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