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7-Eleven convenience goes further for college students with mobile delivery

Mobile delivery is making its way to a wide range of markets now that numerous retailers are embracing its capability in driving sales and consumers are becoming more comfortable with the technology. Retailer 7-Eleven is hoping to play into college students’ interest in mobile features as well as product delivery with its Tapingo collaboration.

“Ever since 1927, with the birth of 7-Eleven stores and the convenience industry, 7-Eleven has been providing customers with convenience items at convenient locations,” said Raja Doddala, vice president of omnichannel and ventures at 7-Eleven. “Over the decades, the definition of convenience, however, has changed.

“Today, people expect to select and order products and services they want with a click of a button on a smart phone,” he said. “7-Eleven is taking advantage of the new opportunities presented by mobile by making our products and services on the smartphone.

“For on demand delivery, we already partner with leading on demand delivery marketplaces such as Postmates and DoorDash. Tapingo is a new addition to our list of partnerships in the delivery space, but specifically serving the needs of college students.”

Mobile convenience
The convenience store chain is delivering its products straight to student’s locations through Tapingo, and targeting an ideal audience for mobile delivery. The college demographic is known for its attraction to delivery services, as it can be difficult for many to leave campuses.

Smartphones have opened the door for services such as Tapingo to tap into this need for easy delivery services on college campuses, and 7-Eleven is the latest retail to realize this potential. Tapingo is a mobile app in which customers can order food and other products from retail partners to be delivered directly to their homes.

Participating schools in California, Arizona, Pennsylvania, Ohio and Maryland are allowing their students options to order products from 7-Eleven to be delivered to their dorms.

The app program also provides users with exclusive deals and promotions only available for Tapingo users. Users can order fresh food items such as hot pizzas and chicken wings but also packaged good such as chips and energy drinks.

Delivery options are spreading much wider as users are becoming interested in its convenient capabilities and easy user experience. Walgreens is also launching a delivery partnership with service Deliv to provide users with prescription delivery service.

Users can pay for orders through the drugstore’s mobile app, but must call to schedule delivery through the Deliv service.

7-Eleven endeavors
Retailer 7-Eleven also attempted to cause mobile sales to foam over by offering a buy one, get one free Slurpee deal that also counts toward its loyalty program’s “Buy Six, Get the Seventh Free” promotion, driving more drinks purchases as well as sign-ups (see more).

The convenience store chain hoped to increase store traffic by rolling out the 7-Eleven Bill Pay app, which enables shoppers to pay cash to more than 17,000 local and national billers with a bar code scan at participating locations (see more).

These mobile offerings help it connect to all consumers, and this latest endeavor will boast well with college students.

“College students already shop with us, and this is another way to more conveniently meet their needs,” Mr. Doddala said. “We anticipate they will want food and beverages, including a Slurpee, when they are studying, getting together with friends or just in need of a quick meal or snack.

“There is a significant market for mobile ordering,” he said. “Tapingo users are largely college students who are digital natives.

“They are redefining convenience and accustomed to ordering what they want with a few taps on a computer or smart phone. Tapingo’s technology helps us build a relationship with this demographic.”

Final take
Brielle Jaekel is editorial assistant at Mobile Commerce Daily