Esselunga: driving growth online

Jon Wright
Head of Insight - RA EMEA

Date : 02 November 2018

Despite grocery ecommerce only just emerging in Italy, Esselunga is building its presence in the channel as it prepares for online buying moving into the mainstream.

Service being extended to Rome

Esselunga has extended its online shopping service, EsselungaCasa, which provides home delivery, to the country’s capital. Delivery, which costs €7.90, €6.90 for orders over €110, is made for the day after an order is made, in two-hour windows between 15:00 and 23:00. Morning deliveries will become available in the future.

The retailer said the service would initially be available in the city’s central districts of Flaminio, Nomentano, Pinciano, Tiburtino and Villa Borghese. In the short term Esselunga is expected to continue to expand the service’s coverage to more of Rome over the next few months. Shoppers can choose from an assortment of more than 15,000 SKUs across all categories, including fresh categories.

Esselunga trialling lockers

As the retailer investigates how to expand with delivery, Esselunga is also trialling a locker-based solution at its HQ in Milan. The multi-temperature lockers enable staff to order online across the retailer’s complete range. Deliveries are made twice a day to the lockers to enable shoppers to collect products at lunchtime or at the end of the day.

Source: IGD Research

The trial is aimed at enabling Esselunga to work out how to make the system work efficiently and how popular it could be. With its comparatively large stores, expansion is relatively slow, while some city centre areas are unlikely to be able to accommodate one of its sites. The lockers would provide an avenue for Esselunga to expand in these areas, while also providing a way to meet the demand of on-the-go shoppers in high footfall locations.

Esselunga looking to maintain online leadership in grocery ecommerce

Grocery ecommerce has been relatively slow to emerge and expand in Italy compared to other European markets. However, Esselunga, which is the channel leader, is building its skill and scale as it looks to maintain its leadership in a channel which is only set to grow. The trialling of a variety of solutions, which also includes click and collect points at its stores, will help it to work out how to make online operate both for it and shoppers alike.

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