While US grocers are worried about a future that includes direct competition from Amazon in the brick and mortar grocery business, grocery store chains in the UK are starting to partner up with the online retail giant to bring voice assisted shopping to their customers.
Today Morrisons, the United Kingdom’s fourth biggest grocery store chain, announced that their customers will soon be able to shop for groceries via Alexa, Amazon’s voice assistant. The company’s new Alexa skill will enable Morrisons consumers to add items to their cart via Alexa as well as check the status of their order or edit their basket.
Morrisons is the first brick and mortar grocer in the UK to add Alexa. In August, UK online grocer Ocado added an Alexa skill.
In the US, adoption of Alexa has been non-existent among big grocers. Online grocery delivery service Peapod has added an Alexa skill, but so far none of the big grocery store chains have created an Alexa skill. This isn’t surprising given Amazon’s designs on the grocery business. While Amazon has expanded Amazon Fresh to the UK, their grocery efforts in England are not nearly as far along as they are in the US.
As they say, it’s only a matter of time.