Major retail outlets race to keep up with online trend
June 25 2020 02:50 AM
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Major hypermarkets in Qatar continue to upgrade their websites to meet the growing demand for online shopping and home delivery services amid the Covid-19 pandemic, it is learnt. 
A number of stores, including retail chain Spar, have also launched online platforms, taking orders digitally from customers who opt to stay at home in the current situation.
LuLu Group International regional manager Shanavas P M told Gulf Times that they have increased the slots for Standard, Express and ‘Click and Collect’ (collect from store) deliveries. “We also added more items (various brands) on our website as per customer demand,” he said, adding that they plan to further improve their services online.
To entice more customers, LuLu is also giving away free items such as QBake butter bread for every grocery order. Carrefour Qatar, which has been getting some feedback from customers via online surveys, has focused on further improving its delivery services by ensuring that all items are sent on time.
The company recently introduced a new feature on its website, which allows substitution for out-of-stock grocery products or brands. A minimum order of QR150 is required before checking out. 
Apart from special discounts, customers also have the option to select the number of items or weight (in kilograms) they want to order, depending on their budget.
Shaher Express, a one-stop-shop for fresh fruits and vegetables, groceries and other necessities, as well as apparel and electronic items, ensures that items are delivered within 24 hours. 
In some cases, delivery takes only an hour or less. Retail outlets also have different delivery fees: QR15 flat for LuLu, QR10 for Carrefour (less than QR250), QR20 for Spar and QR25 for Shaher Express.
The leading online food ordering platform in the Middle East, Talabat, meanwhile, continues to expand by increasing the number of partner stores and restaurants. Talabat has also introduced ‘rider chat’ and contactless delivery to ensure the safety of customers and its riders, encouraging online payment to minimise contact. 
Customers can request the rider to leave the items in front of their door. Carriage has become popular among Qatar residents for delivering an array of food and dishes, as well as drinks such as karak tea, “as fast and in the best condition possible”. It has no minimum charge and customers can live-track their orders.
It is learnt that many restaurants, eateries and popular fast food chains such as McDonald’s, Jollibee and Kentucky Fried Chicken, among others, also continue to improve their online and delivery platforms even as Qatari authorities are gradually lifting Covid-19 restrictions.



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