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The Definitive Guide to Using Shipt: Get Groceries Without Leaving Home

Last updated: March 24, 2020
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The gig economy’s secret mission to help consumers never leave their homes again has reached yet another milestone: online grocery delivery services.

Popular delivery services like Instacart and AmazonFresh are seeing increasing demand, and naturally, other retailers are throwing their hats into the ring. Popular brands like Kroger and Walmart have developed their own same-day delivery options to increase convenience for their customers.

Now, Target is also in the game. In December 2017, Target acquired Shipt, helping expand its grocery delivery services into all 50 states. This article intends to be the definitive guide to using Shipt where you’ll learn all about Shipt, how to use the platform, and how you can start earning as a shopper.

What Is Shipt?

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Shipt is an online platform that offers scheduled and same-day delivery services for over 50,000 grocery items from your favorite local grocery stores. Founded in Birmingham, Alabama, the company is dedicated to helping customers save time, gas, and effort.

Just by using your app and the company’s website, you can receive a week’s worth of groceries right at your doorstep, delivered by a vetted and trusted shopper. Even businesses themselves are welcome to have Shipt memberships to keep their kitchens stocked up with goodies from Target, CVS Pharmacy, Petco, Kroger family stores, and select local brands.

How Much Shipt Costs

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Every Shipt customer must pay a membership fee to use the service. With a monthly membership, you’ll be paying $14.99 per month. If you want to save money by upping the commitment, you can select an annual membership and pay $99 per year, which translates to $8.25 per month.

You’ll also have to pay the standard costs of your groceries, plus tax. Shipt doesn’t profit by jacking up the costs of your favorite grocery items. In fact, like most grocery stores, they provide a category for sales, making grocery savings much easier. Plus, because you’ll see an upfront cost before you check out, you’ll have no surprises and will never accidentally exceed your weekly shopping budget.

For orders that don’t reach $35, be aware that a $7 delivery fee will apply. However, if you do reach the minimum for free delivery, Shipt states that the total cost of each shopping trip should only be an estimated $5 more than your average trip to the store. Convenience for the price of a cup of coffee certainly is a fair deal.

If you just want to test out the waters, the service is currently offering two weeks free and $15 off your first order if you sign up now.

Submitting Your First Order

Following your account creation, you’ll be ready to request your first delivery. Simply sign in using your iPhone, Android, or desktop to begin searching for grocery items and other household essentials.

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Shipt provides categories like produce, baby accessories, and on-sale items,  making it easy to narrow down your search. Know exactly what you need? Using the search bar can reduce your time scrolling through the app, and prevent your wandering eyes from adding your favorite barbecue chips to the cart.

Each time you find the item you want, simply add it to your cart. Before checking out, you can view and update items in your cart, see your total (including delivery fee, if included), and even add special requests for your shopper.

The app will inform you if shoppers aren’t available, but typically, Shipt offers delivery within one hour of receiving your request. The only requirement: You must be home at the time you schedule your groceries to be delivered.

Making Money as a Shopper

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If you’re interested in earning extra cash by shopping, Shipt offers open applications for shopping gigs. All Shipt shoppers are independent contractors who earn on a semi-flexible schedule, making up to $22 per hour. To qualify, you must:

  • Be at least 18 years old
  • Have a valid United States driver’s license and car insurance
  • Have a year of licensed driving experience
  • Understand how to navigate the produce section
  • Own insulated cooler bags
  • Have an updated smartphone that supports the Shipt Shopper app

If you meet all the minimum qualifications, you can fill out Shipt’s shopper application. Because you must request to work specific time frames, Shipt does prefer shoppers that will be available on its busiest days — Sunday and Monday. Sometimes Shipt isn’t in need of shoppers for certain locations, but anyone is welcome to apply. You’ll receive a response within 48 hours.

However, you won’t automatically be a shopper upon submission. Differentiating themselves from other companies in the gig economy, Shipt requires all of its contractors to complete an interview, in addition to a standard background check, to ensure every representative is someone they trust.

Making Money Through Referrals

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Don’t have time to become a shopper? Busy customers can make money, too.

If you’re currently a Shipt member, you can take advantage of the company’s generous referral program by encouraging friends and family members to join in on the convenience of home deliveries for their groceries. If they join, they’ll receive $50 off an annual membership. For every person you refer who makes a purchase and remains a member for at least 30 days, you’ll receive a $50 credit — which translates to plenty of free groceries.

To start referring your network, head to Shipt’s referral page.

Canceling Your Shipt Account

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If you test out Shipt and decide the membership fee isn’t worth it, canceling your account is not a problem. To cancel your Shipt membership, contact their headquarters team by emailing [email protected]shipt.com or calling (205) 502-2500. From there, you’ll receive direct assistance from a staff member for your cancellation.

Shipt doesn’t publicly disclose a way for you to delete your Shipt Shopper account. However, as an independent contractor, you can simply stop requesting shifts. If notifications are still bothering you, you can also delete your Shipt Shopper app and unsubscribe from emails.

Frequently Asked Questions

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Now that you’ve created your Shipt account, you may be interested in learning more. Here are our answers to a few common questions to help you become an expert in the ordering or shopping experience:

1. Does Shipt offer full-time shopping opportunities?

No, the company specifies that shopping is a part-time opportunity. If you’re seeking a full-time gig, consider looking into Instacart or other flexible gigs outside grocery shopping.

2. Do I need to tip my shopper?

Much like Uber and Grubhub, Shipt does not require tipping. However, tipping your shopper in exchange for their service is strongly encouraged. Shipt’s platform supports cashless tipping, though you’re always welcome to tip in cash when your shopper arrives. Regardless of which method you choose, Shipt will never take any portion of the tip away from shoppers.

3. What can I do if I receive a wrong order?

If you’ve received a wrong item, or never received an item at all, you can file a report via the Shipt app up to seven days after the delivery.

Start by going into “Your Orders,” selecting your order, and tapping “Any feedback on the items?” You’ll be able to select “Issue” and provide additional details for every item necessary. You’ll receive a response within a day after submission.

Shipt’s phone number and email, listed in the “Canceling Your Shipt Account” section above, can also be used if you require further assistance. The company additionally offers a live chat button on the bottom right-hand corner of their web pages.

4. What payment methods does Shipt accept?

Currently, customers can only purchase their memberships and groceries using their credit or debit cards. However, as the business grows, we imagine customers may have other options.

5. How do shoppers pay for groceries?

Don’t worry — you won’t have to use your credit card and wait for reimbursements to come. Shipt will send you a prepaid card (along with a company T-shirt) that you can use when checking out. The company will load the card with what you need, plus a bit of extra cash in case the store has unexpected expenses upon checkout.

Start Your No-Hassle Shopping Experience

We hope you consider this article the definitive guide to using Shipt that walked you through the Shipt sign-up process, both as a customer and as a shopper, along with everything else you need to know about using the platform. If convenience is frequently your deciding factor, you’ll love using Shipt to get your everyday shopping done for you.

Still skeptical about the service? Take a look at our Shipt and Instacart comparison to help determine if there’s a better service for you.

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