With the hustle and bustle of everyday life, sometimes the idea of driving to the grocery store to do your own shopping feels — or actually is — impossible.
That’s why grocery delivery services like Shipt have become so popular.
Shipt customers love the app because of the fast delivery windows and reasonable membership fees that help them save money and time.
But if you’re looking to make some extra money or find a full time job, should you consider becoming a personal shopper for Shipt or another grocery delivery service?
In this article, we’ll take a look at Shipt’s offerings, as well as what life is like for Shipt Shoppers.
What Is Shipt?
Shipt was created in Birmingham, Alabama, and is now owned by Target.
The service has fast become the Uber of grocery shopping.
Instead of wasting time hunting for items, standing in line at checkout, or driving home through traffic, Shipt allows customers to assemble their grocery lists online through the Shipt mobile app.
Once a customer has provided a debit or credit card for payment, a “Shipt Shopper” will purchase the items in store and deliver them straight to the customer’s home.
If you’re curious about Shipt, you can sign up right now for a free two-week trial and receive free delivery.
Just download the Shipt app on any Apple or Android smartphone, and sign up.
Normal service requires a monthly membership fee of $14.99.
If you end up loving your Shipt experience, you can save money by expanding to the cheaper, annual membership of $99 a year.
That’s only $8.25 a month by comparison.
Shipt will sometimes charge a fraction more than store prices for particular items, a move Shipt claims helps cover the company’s costs for shopping and delivering.
But overall, Shipt tries to keep its prices the same as if you’re grocery shopping in person.
Whatever the price is for an item in your favorite store, Shipt will charge you about the same.
The Shipt app also monitors items for sales.
Before you check out, you’ll see a total that includes taxes.
Keep in mind that Shipt works best when you’re making a larger grocery run, because small orders (anything less than $35) will be charged a separate $7 delivery fee.
What Does It Take to Be a Shipt Shopper?
If you’re familiar with services like Uber or Lyft, the requirements to work for Shipt are very similar.
You’ll need to be at least 18 years old, have a valid driver’s license, have at least one year’s driving experience, own an insured vehicle from 1997 or newer, and have a smartphone.
You’ll also need to clear a background check.
And Shipt asks that its shoppers be familiar with grocery products, particularly meats and produce, to better help customers.
The official Shipt site claims that their “Shipt Shoppers” can make an average of $22 an hour, paid weekly.
When you become a Shipt Shopper you’ll be asked to choose a “zone” to work for, which is basically an area of your town.
You can choose one or more zones, but the key is to be able to provide fast service from grocery stores you’re familiar with (more on that in a second).
When you receive an order, you’ll be paid a flat $5 fee from Shipt, plus 7.5% commission on the order, and any tips you receive.
So if you take one hour to assemble, purchase, and deliver a $200 grocery order, you’ll make $20 before tips.
The key is time: The longer you take to assemble that $200 order, the less you’ll average per hour.
Shipt Reviews: How to Make the Most Money as a Shopper
If you’re fast, friendly, and knowledgeable about groceries, you can make a lot of cash on Shipt.
The company’s claim of a $22 average per hour is way above most wages for unskilled jobs.
The trick to turning good money into great money is to pick the right zone and earn tips.
Whatever the customer pays in tip goes straight to the Shipt shopper, and reviews agree that the fastest and best way to earn frequent tips is to cut down your delivery times, communicate with customers while shopping (especially if they have special requests), and deliver a mistake-free order.
That requires Shipt Shoppers to know their stores.
If you’re starting out with Shipt or any other grocery delivery service, explore every participating store in your zone before your first order comes in.
Study up on produce and make sure you can recognize and locate a variety of fresh fruit and vegetables.
Is Shipt Available Where I Live?
Shipt is available in over 250 market areas in the United States, meaning that if you live in or near a major city, you’ve most likely got access to Shipt and its competitors.
The easiest way to find out if Shipt is in your area is by visiting the official Shipt site and entering your zip code, or just activating your location on the Shipt mobile app.
If Shipt is active in your area, you can apply to become a Shipt shopper.
And if you’re in a rural or remote location but willing to work in a Shipt area, you can also apply, but you’ll want to make sure you’re in the active zone you’re shopping for to cut down on delivery times.
What Kind of Grocery Stores Are Available on Shipt?
If you’ve got a favorite regional grocery chain, there’s a good chance you can shop them on Shipt.
Popular grocery stores like H-E-B, Publix, and Meijer are available on Shipt, as well as national chains like CVS and Target.
If you’re looking to become a personal shopper, Shipt reviews suggest finding a zone with a variety of options for customers — not just one with a lot of grocery stores.
The more options that exist for customers, the higher the chance that you can stay busy working each hour and raise your average.
How Does Working for Shipt Compare to Its Competitors?
Shipt has had a big lead in the personal shopping and grocery delivery industry, but there’s a lot of competition out there and more on the way.
Shipt’s biggest rival is Instacart, but major services from Amazon Prime and Walmart offer free delivery to customers and the same flexible benefits to independent contractors looking to work on their own schedules.
Instacart is an almost identical service to Shipt, except that unlike Shipt reviews, reviews from Instacart shoppers indicate a wide variety of per-hour earnings with as high as $20 and as low as $7.
And unlike some restaurant food delivery services, there’s no guaranteed minimum.
If you’re not busy working for Instacart, you won’t be making enough money to justify your time.
Reviews of Walmart delivery drivers are a little better than Instacart with drivers making between $11 and $26 according to Glassdoor.
The good news is that Walmart is looking to hire — with the company trying to double its current availability of grocery delivery from 800 of its stores in 100 cities to 1,600 stores in 200 cities.
Retail giant Amazon recently acquired Whole Foods and folded the grocery store chain into its Amazon Prime service.
Amazon’s Flex division offers sign ups for grocery delivery as part of their overall delivery team that includes normal Amazon goods.
Working for Amazon is very steady with a listed pay range of between $18 and $25 per hour.
If you’re looking for the most consistent work, Amazon is your best bet, offering potential delivery drivers much more volume than Shipt or Instacart.
Shipt Reviews: It Can Pay Big If You Know Your Zones
If you’re looking for a steady, flat wage, you might want to check out one of the larger corporate delivery services like Amazon Prime or Walmart.
But if you’re someone who likes to wander grocery stores and knows their produce and meats, you can make as much or more money providing fast, expert service to a high-volume zone on Shipt.
Because of the service’s affiliation with many customers’ favorite stores, you can help get customers the exact items they want without any of the hassle.
And with the tipping system and affiliation with favored brands, your best chance to make great money is by making customers feel like they’ve truly had a personal shopping experience at their favorite store.