Will multistory warehouses mean faster deliveries from Amazon, Home Depot and others?
Amazon.com and Home Depot are looking to up their delivery games, and a new three-story warehouse in Seattle may hold the key to their future plans.
The facility, which allows trucks to drive up a ramp to dock on multiple levels, is positioned closer to population centers to help the retailers more quickly deliver online orders.
Amazon, Target, Walmart and a whole host of others are engaged in a competition to become known as the most convenient places for consumers to acquire the products they want to buy. Prologis, which owns the warehouse, developed the property with the competition for convenience in mind.
“You have to go vertical because you can’t find a 50-acre space in the middle of a city close to the customer,” Hamid Moghadam, CEO of Prologis, told The Wall Street Journal.
Other warehouse space operators are also building multistory facilities with similar objectives in mind. At least three such warehouses are planned in New York City, the Journal reports, including a four-story warehouse in Brooklyn.
[Editor’s note: While the warehouses identified in the Journal’s reporting may be new, the concept of multistory distribution centers is not. At least one department store chain, if not more, operated multistory warehouses in New York City in the past.]
Speedy deliveries are at the heart of Amazon’s value proposition with its customers, particularly Prime members. In April, Amazon announced that it was “evolving” its free two-day standard delivery on Prime eligible purchases to a one-day and even same-day timetable. A month later, Walmart announced that it was rolling out next day deliveries — no annual membership required — to about 75 percent of American consumers by the end of the year.
- Amazon’s New Multistory Warehouse Aims to Cut Delivery Times – The Wall Street Journal
- Should (can) rivals meet the free one-day delivery bar being set by Amazon? – RetailWire
- Did Walmart just one-up Amazon on next day deliveries? – RetailWire
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: Do you expect multistory warehouses in suburban and urban locations to become commonplace over the next decade? What do you see as the pros and cons of such facilities?