Albertsons Gets Out Of The Online Business

Albertsons will give up its online shopping business as of next week after a 4-year effort. The decision to halt its online shopping and delivery service in the Bay Area, Sacramento, Dallas-Fort Worth and Phoenix markets on July 21 comes a month after ownership of the grocery chain changed, according to a report in Wednesday's San Jose Mercury-News.

Albertsons began offering its online grocery shopping service in the Bay Area in March 2002. Customers who shopped online could either pay $4.95 to have their orders made ready for pickup at an Albertsons store in the online delivery area or pay $9.95 for home delivery. But, like many other online grocery ventures over the years, was not profitable, an industry expert said. ``I'd heard it's been struggling for some time. I think online is not necessarily a viable way to sell groceries,'' said George Whalin, president of Retail Management Consultants in San Marcos. To read the San Jos Mercury-News story, please click here.