Amazon Brings Grocery Delivery To Brooklyn

Amazon announced this morning it’s bringing its grocery delivery service AmazonFresh to Brooklyn, confirming earlier reports of a New York area expansion. Initially, the service will be available to Prime members in Park Slope, but the company says it will soon expand the service to additional ZIP codes in Brooklyn. There’s no word yet on when AmazonFresh will arrive elsewhere in New York, including Manhattan.

The service will allow consumers to order from over 500,000 items for same-day and early-morning delivery, including fresh groceries and other products from local speciality shops, as well as toys, electronics, and household goods. Some of the local retailers on board include The Lobster Place, Dickenson’s Farmstand Meats, Gotham Greens, and Amy’s Bread.

Items have to be order by 10 a.m. in order to take delivery by dinnertime, or by 10 p.m. to get items by breakfast, says Amazon.

AmazonFresh will be free for Prime members until year-end, but in 2015 they’ll have to upgrade to the $299 per year subscription service if they want to continue with the program.

Amazon has been experimenting with the logistics and pricing for its AmazonFresh service for years, and currently operates in other test markets, including Seattle and in several zip codes in Southern California. This Brooklyn launch, however, is the first time the service has arrived on the Eastern side of the U.S.

The move comes at a time when a number of companies are testing the waters related to same-day delivery, and in some cases, coming up short. Ebay’s same-day service Ebay Now, it was reported earlier this year, was failing. This week, it was basically confirmed that while Ebay isn’t immediately closing up shop, the service is basically dead. Google, which has been claiming Amazon as its biggest search competitor, brought its Google Express service to several new cities this week. And newcomer Instacart is working with national chains like Whole Foods and Costco, as well as regional retailers.

Meanwhile, Walmart has taken a different approach to e-commerce, testing everything from curbside pick-up to ship-to-store to next-day and more. This week, it opened two new fulfillment centers in the Eastern U.S. aimed at offering speedier while still affordable next-day delivery to more customers.