- 7-Eleven, the convenience-store chain with 10,900 locations in North America, is testing a mobile ordering feature at select Dallas stores with its new smartphone app, according to a press release.
- The 7-ElevenNOW app lets people order snacks, cosmetics, gift cards, home goods and beverages among hundreds of products from a nearby store for delivery or in-store pickup. After opening the app, shoppers first choose how they want to receive their order. For delivery, the app automatically connects to the nearest participating store and sends it to a courier service that will deliver the order to the customer's door. For pickup, users can select when and which store they want to retrieve their items from. All payments are handled within the app.
- Customers in the Dallas area who enroll in the new iOS or Android app will receive free delivery on their first order. The company expects to roll out the service to other U.S. locations next year, per the release.
7-Eleven's emphasis on convenience is a natural fit for on-demand ordering and delivery, especially for younger consumers who have generally been at the forefront of the growing product delivery trend. The chain appears to recognize that providing convenience to customers in the mobile age means much more than opening additional stores near freeways and intersections that see plenty of car traffic. The same trend toward mobile ordering and delivery that Amazon has helped to inspire is also evident in the fast-food industry as burger chains like McDonald's expand their services throughout the U.S.
7-Eleven can leverage its broad network of stores to expand its mobile on-demand service, especially with newer technologies like geolocation that help to identify nearby stores and sort out where to send delivery orders. The growth of third-party delivery services like Postmates let stores and restaurants efficiently make house calls without having to invest in their own vehicle fleets or hire private drivers.
The news is just the latest development from a brand that has this year seriously revamped its mobile capabilities. The company also has added a Facebook Messenger chatbot and expanded its 7Rewards customer loyalty program with an app that offers special deals and lets customers earn points based on their purchase history. The company also has Amazon Lockers in select stores for in-store package pickup and recently added Amazon Cash to more than 8,000 locations.