Looking for a new company to add to your driving gig, or new to the gig driving game? Shipt is a popular delivery service that offers high earnings, variety, and plenty of business. Is Shipt the right kind of company for you? After you read this post, you’ll have a much better idea. We’ll cover
- the Shipt difference
- what it takes to be a Shipt shopper
- Shipt vs. Instacart: which is better?
- pro tips for Shipt shoppers
The Shipt difference
What makes Shipt so special? It’s a “shop and deliver” service, meaning that drivers gather items ordered by customers, and then deliver them to their doorsteps. If you enjoy shopping and the variety it offers, that could be enough right there to attract you to working for Shipt. Consider these factors as well:
- High pay. Shipt says shoppers can make up to $22 per hour. Gridwise data, as shown in this previous post, reflects a 2022 average hourly pay rate of $18.15 and an average rate of $19.22 per trip.
- Financial backing. Shipt is a wholly owned subsidiary of Target. This behemoth company won’t be going away anytime soon. That tells you that your Shipt gig will be secured by deep corporate pockets.
- Company expansion. This same Gridwise post discusses Shipt’s aggressive moves to partner with companies virtually everyone uses, such as Walgreens and 7-Eleven.
- Company image. Shipt depicts its workers as ordinary people going out of their way to do an extraordinary job. This company image can make Shipt shoppers feel as though they’re getting some respect from the company.
What it takes to be a Shipt shopper
Shipt makes it easy to become a Shipt shopper, but they do have standards you need to know about. Here are the requirements, according to the Shipt driver website:
Shipt shoppers must
- be at least 18 years old
- have a valid current mailing address
- hold a valid U.S. driver’s license and auto insurance
- have a reliable vehicle (1997 or newer)
- possess knowledge of produce selection
- be able to lift up 45 pounds
- have a current smartphone, such as an iPhone (iOS 10 or newer) or Android (5.1 or newer)
- pass a comprehensive (criminal and DMV) background check
At first glance, the basics of how to become a Shipt shopper don’t look very challenging, and they’re not. The one some drivers might balk at is “knowledge of produce selection.” There’s a lot to learn for almost anyone there, so if you’re game for getting schooled on how to pick fresh fruits and veggies, this website is a great place to get started.
The other thing you need to have if you want to be a Shipt shopper is patience. Lines in grocery stores can be long and slow, and your customers’ tempers can be short. A professional attitude toward customer service will take you far, keep you sane, and earn you bigger tips.
Shipt vs. Instacart: Which is better?
The biggest advantage Shipt has over Instacart becomes obvious when you ask the question: “How much do Shipt shoppers get paid?”As we stated above, Shipt shopper pay is, on the whole, higher than Instacart pay. Instacart does offer the option to work as an in-store employee, which Shipt does not. The pay for these positions is lower than that for independent contractor shopper/drivers, however.
Shipt shoppers also work on-demand, and not on shift blocks. This means Shipt doesn’t require you to select blocks when you’ll be available to shop. You can choose your own times and work for as long as you like.
Positive Shipt shopper reviews point out the flexibility of being your own boss, the same as other driving gigs, and shoppers agree the Shipt shopper app is easy to use. Many Shipt shoppers express a high degree of satisfaction with the pay they receive and the way the company treats them.They also say that Shipt training is very thorough and helpful.
However, if you live in a small town, away from a large urban area, Shipt may not be able to offer a lot of work for you. While some Shipt shoppers say they can do well working as one of a few shoppers in their areas, if you want to earn enough from Shipt to equate to full-time earnings, you’ll do better if you are located in a large, densely populated region.
Both companies are expanding their focus from grocery and convenience store deliveries into other types of products. This post from the Gridwise blog provides a side-by-side comparison of Shipt vs. Instacart. You can read more about the distinctions between these two companies and decide which one would best serve your driving gig and lifestyle needs.
Pro tips for Shipt shoppers
If you’ve already got the basics of the Shipt shopper job down, that’s great—but you’ll get more gratuities and make more money if you follow these pro tips:
- Communicate. Your customers’ orders matter to them, and you need to show them that they matter to you as well. Don’t wait until you’re done with the order to text and tell your customers what you couldn’t find. Instead, engage them from the outset, keeping them abreast of where you are in the process.This includes telling them about any delays you might encounter in the store or in traffic.
- Follow up. After your order is complete, let your customer know you appreciate their business. If you drop off the order without seeing the customer, snap a photo and send that along. Point out that they’ll be getting a confirmation email, where they can rate the service and add a tip.
- Reach out to Shipt support. If you need to get a response from a customer and don’t hear back from them, contact Shipt support to let them know what has happened. That way you’ll have documentation to back you up should the customer express disappointment—for example, if they complain about wanting a substitution and not getting through to you in time.
- Equip yourself. Organize and protect your customers’ orders by using the right equipment. Crates for the interior of your storage area, as well as thermal bags and padded containers, will prevent breaks, spills, and other accidents that could cause customer dissatisfaction.
- Create a winning strategy. Use Gridwise to find out the best times and places to shop. When to Drive and Where to Drive show you where Shipt shoppers are making the most money in your area.
- Make friends with store employees. There will be times when you need help, whether it’s to find out which produce is more desirable, or in which section you can find the truffle oil. Building relationships with people who work in the stores will pay dividends that help you do your job more quickly and easily. They will also let you have the kinds of friendly interactions that make your work even more fulfilling.
- Make friends with repeat customers. Depending on the size of your service area, you might encounter the same customers more than once. Even if they don’t remember you, showing that you remember them is sure to add extra ka-ching to your virtual tip jar.
- Run your gig like a business. While lots of people shop for Shipt as a part-time side gig, it’s always wise to remember that it’s still a business. Use Gridwise to track your mileage and earnings, so you can keep account of your income and expenses. Count on Gridwise Benefits for insurance and other services, including telehealth, vision coverage, discounts on gas, roadside assistance, and life insurance policies.
Take advantage of these tips and watch your earnings soar!