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Google Expands U.S. Shopping Service To Multiple Cities, Introduces Membership Fee

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Google Shopping Express Service

Google Shopping Express service will now require a $95 per year or $10 monthly membership fee.

Google, which launched their Google Shopping Express service last year is now changing the way the service works and also expanding it to more cities.

Just like Amazon Prime, Google will now start charging membership fees from customers for its fast online shopping delivery service, the company said Monday. The service lets shoppers order products online from local stores operated by more than 35 retailers for delivery the same day or the next.

According to the company blog post, Chicago, Boston and Washington D.C. have been included to the Google Express service with more than 7 million people who can access its same-day delivery option. Almost 12 million people in Northern California can use its next-day service, it said.

Google Express aims to make "shopping your favorite local stores as easy and fast as shopping online, and to help you get what you need delivered the same day," -- in other words, to use e-commerce to bridge the purchasing gap between traditional outlets and the Web.

The service which competes with Amazon’s same day delivery service provides shoppers a chance to purchase anything from pet food to soda, and have it delivered to their doorstep. The service which was previously called Google Shopping Express did not charge membership delivery fee for the service offered.

The Google Express service will require a $95 per year or $10 monthly membership fee, while consumers who don’t get a membership can also choose to pay as they go for $4.99 per eligible order. Same-day or overnight shipping for eligible items that cost more than $15 is free, the company said in a blog post.

Google Express’ same-day delivery service is available in San Francisco, the Peninsula and San Jose, West L.A., Manhattan and most recently added Chicago, Boston and Washington D.C.

In the last few months, Google has added 16 new merchants to the service including 1-800-Flowers, Barnes & Noble, Nine West, PetSmart, Vitamin Shoppe and Sports Authority, and regional merchants such as Paragon Sports in New York and Vicente Foods in Los Angeles. In the new markets the search giant has included regional brands like Stop & Shop in Boston, Giant Food in D.C., and Lux Roses, TigerDirect, Treasure Island Foods and Wrigleyville Sports in Chicago. Additionally, customers in the Bay Area can add alcohol and fresh foods to the delivery menu.

Google will still continue to offer free delivery for new members for a three-month trial period.

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