Starbucks Corp. launched Wednesday the long-awaited next phase of its delivery test, allowing customers in Seattle to have food and beverages delivered by Postmates.
Starbucks launched the first phase of its delivery test in October, offering “Green Apron” delivery by baristas within the Empire State Building in New York. In Seattle, however, the test will open up delivery to wherever customers might be, at least within certain Seattle neighborhoods included in the test area.
“Our customers are highly engaged with mobile order and pay, placing 5 million transactions a month, so delivery becomes a natural extension that provides another easy and convenient way to meet them where they are in their day,” Adam Brotman, Starbucks chief digital officer, said in a statement.
Third-party delivery firms like Postmates have been offering delivery for restaurant chains in a growing number of markets for months. But customers must typically order through the delivery provider’s mobile app or website.
Starbucks, however, has linked its app to Postmates for the courier service, at least for those using iOS smartphones.
Customers can use Starbucks app to order, pay and choose either delivery or pick up. The order is transmitted to Postmates to dispatch a courier to the closest location. Customers can track the progress of their delivery in real time on a digital map.
Initially, delivery orders will be given a 60-minute window, but Starbucks hopes most orders will arrive within 30 minutes or less, the company said.
According to The Seattle Times, Starbucks’ delivery service costs $5.99 per delivery.
Starbucks officials have described delivery as a potential game changer for the brand as more customers use the mobile app to order and pay ahead.
Delivery is expected to launch across the chain’s 7,500 domestic company-owned units in 2016.