Executing 2-hour grocery delivery in Lagos

February 3, 2016
3 min read
Grocery cart loaded with fresh fruit and bread moving through the aisle.

Grocery delivery services are typically targeted at relatively productive, time-constrained people. At Gloo.ng, we have called these ones “Busy Homemakers.” A busy homemaker goes to an online supermarket or grocery delivery service such as ours, Gloo.ng, to have 3 main jobs done:

  1. Stocking up of the home with pantry goods required for a month or two.
  2. Weekly unplanned top-up purchases of these goods, typically due to gaps between projected need and actual usage in 1 above.
  3. However, for the B.O.P (bottom-of-the-pyramid), 2 above is actually the primary means of fulfilling Job No.1 above, typically done on a weekly basis — or even twice weekly. (In some situations, even daily!)
  4. Raw goods and fresh produce purchase.

For over three years now, we have built Gloo.ng to focus 100% on knocking the ball out of the park for busy homemakers in performing Job-to-be-done No.1 above on all aspects of value: products quality and pricing as well as service quality and speed. This is reflected in the fact that over 60% of our revenue typically comes in the last week of each month with 90% repeat purchases.


It is also reflected in the fact that our average basket size has grown from about $24 when we launched late 2012 to $120 as at end of last year. Our objective has always been to have a greater share of that monthly budget each Nigerian household earmarks for housekeeping. This strategy has allowed us to be knocking on break-even faster than is typical for most merchandise ecommerce businesses — four (4) years.


The Gloo.ng 2-Hour Express Grocery Delivery Service is the next phase in our execution: to gear up to begin to serve the needs of busy homemakers for the Job-to-be-done No.2 listed above. (We do not seek with this 2-Hour Express Grocery Delivery service to serve the B.O.P’s peculiar need for this Job-to-be-done yet, enumerated as 3 above: that will be the next phase of execution once we have attained a significant degree of success with this new 2-Hour Express Delivery Service.) This service is very unique because it is first in class. No where in Nigeria does a busy homemaker have the convenience of ordering grocery items online with a money-back guaranteed 2-hour delivery! It’s the first of its type in Nigeria!

The way the system for this new service has been built is that only qualifying orders will have this delivery option presented to them during checkout. The system will check that the time the order is being placed is between 10am and 5pm (excluding Sundays), that the order is of a value between $20 and $40 and that the order does not include home appliances. Only orders that pass this test will have this delivery option presently to them to use during checkout.

This shows the uniqueness of our thinking about this space as reflected in the attributes of this feature. We are nevertheless aware of the challenges involved in successfully executing this new service and have for now limited it to only Lagos Island locations to give us an opportunity to fine-tune the service before making it global to all our coverage areas. (This was the same rollout approach we adopted for our 3-year old, award-winning Same-Day service.)

In the mid-term, we intend to take on the Job-to-be-done No.3 as it relates to the B.O.P, making our service more mass-market with greater national and regional appeal. And, in the long term, once we achieve some degree of boldness and significant success at that level, we intend to leverage the trust we would have garnered from Nigerian busy homemakers over the years into taking on that last bastion of Job-to-be-done No.4, ultimately giving busy homemakers, irrespective of class or clout, no single reason to visit a brick-and-mortar supermarket or open market in any Nigerian or West African city. And thereby build-out the Biggest Nigerian Supermarket brand — online! THAT.IS.THE.VISION!

This post originally appeared on Olumide's Pulse.

I bully myself because I make me do what I put my mind to. Find me on Twitter @MuyoSan.
I bully myself because I make me do what I put my mind to. Find me on Twitter @MuyoSan.
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I bully myself because I make me do what I put my mind to. Find me on Twitter @MuyoSan.

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