I don't have money for a warehouse right now and I want to ship food with JIT inventory. But in order to do so, I need to have a list of products (around 3000 of them) the store sells. And I need to buy them all from just one location so I can't ask smaller (and more willing) retailers for cooperation.
I already tried 2 options for obtaining this list of products:
I'm thinking of 2 other options:
None of the above are illegal in our state, but the store security won't let me do any of it.
Can anyone think of any other solution for resolving this issue with minimal time and resources? All I need is the list of products.
PS: English is not my native language, so sorry for any errors.
You don't state which country you are in, and perhaps there is a cultural difference here, but in the United States a typical grocery store might stock 40,000 - 50,000 items with a "super store", common in most metropolitan areas, stocking far more than that. Here is some statistical data from FMI.
A store here that only had 3,000 items would be considered perhaps a convenience store, certainly not a grocery store.
As for getting a free/low cost list of items, here is a free site with a list of over 1 million (not all grocery). Here is another list of such sites.
As for getting a list of items in stock at a particular store, have you considered dumpster diving? Most stores printout an inventory list and they generally get thrown in the trash. Also how about just asking one of the managers if you could have an old list when they are done with it?
You know your total budget and what the supplier offers. So go through the price list picking out items that you think are in demand. Then, order small quantities of each (staying within your budget) to see how quickly customers buy them: quick ones get reordered, slow ones don't.
If you can't contact by phone or email 20 people who you think could use this service and ask them what products they prefer, don't go into this business. You don't know enough about the market.
The convenient purchase and accurate on-time delivery is what is going to make or break your site. Claiming you offer everything in the store is probably not a key feature. Give the users the opportunity to tell you what they need.
You can start small and offer the key items people tend to run out of. You're saving them a full trip to the store just because they ran out of bread.
I used a delivery service because I could have a regular schedule of basics (milk, bread, eggs, sandwich meat, apples) dropped off on my doorstep into a cooler with one of those blue cold packs in it every Tuesday morning. I had a reoccurring order. They switched their service and wanted to have a delivery time when I was home, so they could upsell me on other items. I had no intentions of making sure I was home. It totally defeated what I thought was the convenient factor; I wake up in the morning and get my food. I still went to the store, but less than half the time. Giving me a chance to buy crap I don't need is not a selling point. I cancelled a couple of weeks later.