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Awesome Customer Experience: Tom Thumb Grocery Delivery

People, gather around and let me tell you why Tom Thumb delivery customer experience, although basic and non-flashy, completely kicks butt.

I’ll confess I have an ulterior motive. I’ve been telling everybody I know about how freakin' awesome Tom Thumb grocery delivery is, because I don’t want it to go away.

Why? Because I am the ultimate lazy delivery customer. I noticed the other day on my Amazon profile that I have been a customer since 1998. (Whaaaat!? Say, do I get a 20-year anniversary present next year? 20 years is platinum, Jeff. Just sayin.’)

I have tried Amazon PrimeNow grocery delivery, I tried Peapod back when it existed, and I’ve investigated every grocery delivery service out there as it comes online.

Because deliveries, in general, are awesome. Who doesn’t want someone to carry the cat litter up the front walk?

Of them all, Tom Thumb rocks the absolute most.

Let’s unpack:

First, selection. When I want groceries, the vast majority of the time I just want ordinary stuff. Sure, organic miso or triple-chocolate designer foofaw whatever is fantastic! But nine times out of ten I just want some yogurt, a tube of toothpaste, maybe some chicken breasts and bell peppers, ordinary sparkling water, paper towels. Humble stuff. The kind of thing you get at the regular grocery store. When I was trying to do Amazon PrimeNow, I could never seem to get absolutely everything I wanted in one order from the same place. Store X had this, store Y had that. Tom Thumb has the right mix for the daily life kinds of things.

Second, cost (delivery fees). I don’t mind paying a bit for delivery, but if you look at things like Instacart, $4 to $8? And then throw in a tip…. It adds up! As for the subscription models, I don’t shop enough to warrant a subscription — I’m talking maybe twice a month, tops. Plus I just don’t like subscriptions. I go out of town for a couple of weeks, only put one order in, and I feel like I’ve wasted that month’s fee. With Tom Thumb, no subscription, and if you choose the flexible 4 hour delivery window, you get $6 off the delivery fee. I’ve had deliveries for as little as $1. And they don’t take tips.

Third, they get the basics right. Frozen stuff comes frozen. Cold stuff comes cold. Produce looks nice. Meat is fresh. This is super important, and they have been massively consistent for me. (This should probably be #1, now that I think about it. It’s that important.)

Fourth, their website.

[Sort of. Since I wrote this, they have in fact changed their website to have a sexy new Web 2.0-style interface. The search is still good, the features are still good, but the website is SLOWER. Sadly, I'm afraid they've lost points with me since I wrote this. Because I don't care how flashy your site is, if it takes 3 seconds for every single item I search on to load, you've degraded your customer experience. ]

It’s super easy to use. I’ve found the search function to be the best way to shop. Type in “apples,” hit return, bam, there’s your choices. One click, in the cart. They seem to be optimizing the search returns so it puts things you’ve purchased before at the top of the list. Smart. It’s got some other neat features, too, like “shop by history” and “shop by recipe,” which is kind of inspirational when you’re not sure what to cook. And there are lots of promos ! Coupons, BOGOs, and even freebies. It’s fun to look through them. It’s definitely upsold me a time or two.

Now, it’s not the sexiest looking website in the world. No big splashy graphics, no scrolling this or that, no Web 2.0 look-and-feel (is that even a thing anymore?).

You know what? I don’t care. I actually kind of like the retro style. It’s the grocery store. I don’t need it to understand me, entice me, or entrance me. I just want groceries.

And that right there is why Tom Thumb gets it: Decent quality, good price, no muss, no fuss, get on with my life. That’s great customer experience. So. Long live Tom Thumb delivery! Now, do you live in Dallas? Go buy something. :)

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