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BETHPAGE, N.Y. -- A new online grocery player is elbowing its way into Manhattan's Upper East Side, challenging the likes of incumbents FreshDirect and relative newcomer to Web-based delivery, Whole Foods Market.
Best Yet Market, which has nine locations throughout Queens and Long Island, launched the delivery service April 1, choosing Manhattan's Upper East Side because of its population density and proximity to the Best Yet store base. "The Manhattan market was chosen because the prices of groceries are generally much higher than prices in the suburbs," Aviv Raitses, Best Yet's president and c.e.o. told Progressive Grocer. "Our price structure offers an attractive alternative to most food shopping options."
But it may not be an attractive enough to get New Yorkers to switch, according to a Newsday article published this week showing a price comparison between the two retailers that showed not much difference in price at all, aside from a few items here and there.
One advantage that Raitses claims he has over pure Web stores is in the customer relationship front. "Having the stores give us hands on interaction with our customers, where we can test new products, get feedback and use our extensive experience to pick the right products for our online customers."
Still, if the FreshDirect and Whole Foods Market online customers refuse to defect, Raitses feels there is enough business to support the three players. "There is a diverse customer base out there and price will always play a role for the majority of customers."
-- Joe Tarnowski