Best Buy Co. Inc. (NYSE: BBY) will offer free next-day delivery in time for this year’s holiday season. According to the announcement, 99 percent of customers will be able to receive free next-day delivery on thousands of items. The 1 percent who live in areas where the service is not available will still be able to take advantage of free standard shipping on all items.
While the new delivery service covers a wide range of items, larger items such as big-screen TVs and refrigerators are excluded. Best Buy will also provide same-day delivery in 42 U.S. metro cities for online orders completed before 3 p.m. local time Monday through Saturday and before 2 p.m. on Sundays. Shoppers can also pick up their orders within an hour at their local Best Buy store.
Best Buy has been able to improve the speed of its deliveries by modernizing its supply chains. It has added automated storage and retrieval systems to seven of its distribution centers that has improved accuracy, reduced damage to items, and reduced the amount of walking warehouse employees have to do. It has also built three metro e-commerce centers in Los Angeles, Chicago, and New York designed for fast, efficient fulfillment for major urban areas.
Retailers have been investing millions of dollars in overhauling their supply chains to speed up deliveries. Amazon officially began to roll out free one-day shipping in June after announcing the plan in April. In May, Walmart announced that it would also start offering next-day delivery for online orders.
Best Buy does not have a minimum purchase requirement to qualify for free next-day delivery. Walmart requires a minimum purchase of $35 for an order. Amazon requires an Amazon Prime membership, which costs $119 a year. Target offers same-day delivery for online orders for a flat fee of $9.99 per order.