Data and business are moving at an increasingly rapid pace but in the world of retail, that last mile between intention, purchase, real-time shipping updates and then that 3-5 day delivery wait is next on one company's list of problems to solve. Google announced today that it is beta-testing a new, unlimited, same-day delivery service called Google Shopping Express. The pilot program will be available to a limited number of testers in the San Francisco Bay Area.
According to Google's site, here's how it works: retailers will partner with Google and their wares will then be included in Google's online store, shoppers will then be able to browse local retailers online in one convenient place, select a delivery window and provide any delivery instructions for Google's couriers, then sit back and wait for your "I want it now!" delivery as you watch Willy Wonka on Blu-Ray and continue to surf the ‘net. Best part, if you're picked to help test the service, you'll receive a free 6-month membership.
Google is already showing the logos of some major players on its Shopping Express interest page, including the likes of: Target, Walgreens, Staples, Toys ‘R Us and American Eagle Outfitters. Oh, and since it is the Bay Area, you'll see the requisite coffee company, in this case, Blue Bottle Coffee Co., supplying same day delivery for those who can't keep up with their caffeine addictions. For more information and to sign up to be a tester if you're one of the geographically fortunate hit the link here.
What's the end game here? Well, I'm sure this is a step in the direction of an attempt to unseat Amazon.com as the web's "go to" vendor for general online purchases. Google (and everyone else, really) wants you to eat, sleep, live and breath its online eco-system and they're making great strides toward that goal with their Play Store, YouTube, Docs and other products- though they've a long way to go in the content department when it comes to streaming movies and TV shows. Amazon should definitely be watching this experiment with great interest!