Known as the “convenience store on wheels,” a new delivery service called “goPuff” opened for business in Madison Sept. 13.
The service, created by Rafael Ilishayev and Yakir Gola, caters to the needs of millennials, specifically college students, who have minimal time to grab groceries, Ilishayev said.
Accessible through the free app or the website, goPuff allows customers to purchase items ranging from food to electronics to home supplies.
The website has itemized tabs such as “Frozen AF,” “For the Crib” and “Pints on Pints” that especially cater to the college demographic.
The site and products are designed around what they feel are items that students at the University of Wisconsin would use, said Ilishayev.
“Our goal is to get you what you need, when you need it, day or night,” Ilishayev said.
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Customers can fill their cart with desired items, type in their location and within roughly a half-hour a goPuff delivery driver will arrive with their products, Ilishayev explains.
According to goPuff.com, delivery times run from 12:00 p.m. to 4:30 a.m. Monday through Friday nationwide, except in Pittsburgh where it is operable 24/7.
The price of delivery is $1.95 unless the order exceeds $49, in which case it is free. There is a processing tax and delivery tip, as well, the site explained.
Madison is not the first city that goPuff has conducted business in, according to the website. The company has drivers in major cities like Boston, Chicago and Seattle.
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Factors such as population, demographics, proximity to neighboring cities and population density are all factors the team takes into consideration when choosing a new location, said Ilishayev.
“We have a pretty complicated system to target customers.” said Ilishayev. “Some of our information is basic, like population, but some of it is like average rain or snow fall.”
Founded in 2013, the company has grown from a start-up to being a part of 23 major markets across the U.S., he added.
When asked how goPuff is different than popular services like Amazon or GrubHub, Ilishayev said goPuff is focused on speed and control of the entire process, from manufacturing to delivery.
Ilishayev also emphasized that goPuff is all about the brand. Their target audience should be naturally drawn to their services and aesthetic.
“It is also important to recognize that goPuff is not solely for college students,” Ilishayev said. “Yes, that is our demographic, but the convenience of our service is not limited to that market”
UW freshman, Bridgette Motiff, is unsure how convenient the app would be for people living downtown since State Street is so convenient.
For those who live farther away from the accessibility of downtown, this app has the potential to be really helpful, Motiff said.
Late Saturday night Olivia Luberda, junior at Madison Area Technical College, ordered ice cream with friends from the “Pints on Pints” section of goPuff.
“The driver was here within 20 minutes, the ice cream was still very cold and the whole process was just super easy,” Luberda said.
Ilishayev said the company hopes to continue to grow and has come quite far since it’s inception.