How the Gig Economy Can Work for Grocery Stores

How the Gig Economy Can Work for Grocery Stores

Companies like Uber and DoorDash have become increasingly popular over the past few years because they allow consumers to easily obtain the goods they need without physically venturing into stores. 

This kind of service has been coined as the gig economy, due to the one-off nature of the tasks, or “gigs,” to be completed. Wells Fargo defines the gig economy as “the term for a labor market where contractors and freelancers are paid according to short-term assignments and tasks, rather than full- or part-time jobs.”

This new way of contracting labor has radically changed the way many retailers are conducting business — and not for the better. Until now, the gig economy has mostly served the needs of the customer, providing them convenience at the expense of the grocery store. Third-party shoppers, for example, offer fewer chances for impulse purchases since their journeys through the store are predetermined. Stores also have to fork over a sizable portion of the purchase. Forbes noted recently that grocers are left paying fees “over an average of 10% per order,” which adds up quickly in grocery operations.

As tends to happen with technological changes like this, the gig economy doesn’t have to be bad. It’s all in how you leverage it.

“Embracing the expanding gig workforce isn’t optional anymore; it’s a necessity for many businesses, and especially retailers, that want to maintain optimal productivity and successfully compete now and into the foreseeable future,” states Market Source.

Will gig workers ever find themselves working on behalf of the store? In many places, they already do.


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