Ocado home delivery

Wealthy and healthy families would be happy to pay more for a speedier home delivery service

Sainsbury’s, Ocado and Waitrose stand to gain the most from running a one-hour grocery delivery service, demographic data suggests.

The three retailers have the highest proportion of customers who would switch to another service if it was quicker and more convenient, an analysis by CACI has revealed.

CACI identified three demographic groups that prize convenience over price: affluent foodies, busy young couples and families, and wealthy and healthy families.

These groups are open to online grocery, and would be happy to pay a premium if they received their groceries faster.

Of the retailers that attract this customer base, only Sainsbury’s has rolled out a one-hour delivery service to date. The Chop Chop service first launched in London last year and charges a flat fee of £4.99 for delivery.

Waitrose has so far expressed no interest in a one-hour service, but Ocado has suggested it is watching the market. In a media call earlier this week, CEO Tim Steiner said he was “looking at” Sainsbury’s and Tesco one-hour services, though he would not confirm whether Ocado would roll out something similar.

Last month, Ocado chief technology officer Paul Clarke said its trial of driverless cars could facilitate one-hour deliveries.

However, he stressed a rapid turnaround was possible without the technology. “What’s important is we now have technology in our Andover warehouse that is very much aimed at immediacy. We can pick 50 items in just a few minutes. So yes, combining that with driverless vehicles could be a step forward towards that [one-hour delivery] but we could do it with our existing normal delivery method.”