One of the necessary activities that people do on a regular basis is grocery shopping. They usually buy food, toiletries, and other household and personal care products they need. This activity usually means that you will be spending money.
But what if I tell you there’s a company that offers an opportunity for you to make money going grocery shopping?
Yes, and that company is called Instacart where they will pay you to do grocery shopping. The catch? It’s not your grocery shopping, but that of the company’s customers.
The company will basically pay you to shop for grocery items of their customers and deliver the items to their homes.
The amount of money you can make with this opportunity will depend on whether you will be a part-time employee or an independent contractor.
Employees are paid an hourly wage while contractors earn commissions that are based on several factors.
But is Instacart really a legitimate opportunity or is it just another scam that you should avoid?
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Instacart is a Legit Opportunity to Make Money
Instacart is a company that offers a grocery delivery service where people can hire them to do their grocery shopping and have it delivered to their homes.
The company is able to do this by hiring Shoppers, either as part-time employees or as independent contractors.
If you are a part-time employee, you will earn an hourly wage and be required to work a certain number of hours a week.
As an independent contractor, you work when you want and where you want. You get to earn commissions based on the number of items you buy and on how many deliveries you accomplish.
From what I’ve seen so far, Instacart seems like a legitimate opportunity. You can really make money doing grocery shopping for other people and delivering it to their homes.
There are just some issues with this opportunity. One of the main issues is the pay, as it is very low and not really worth it compared to the kind of work you will be doing.
I also saw that there are a number of complaints about the hours that Instacart gives them. The app also seems to be faulty, which affects greatly how shoppers perform.
Customers also have some complaints with the app, as it seems they overcharge a lot of the grocery items they are buying.
I’ll be discussing more about these issues as we progress further in this review of Instacart.
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Who Uses Instacart?
The Instacart app is designed for two types of people with one being those who are unable to do their own grocery shopping due to various reasons.
The other type are people who are looking for a side income that can help complement their main source of income.
For people who have no time or unable to do their grocery shopping, Instacart can help them with that. The app is designed to do your grocery shopping for you and deliver it to your house after.
They have Shoppers that shop for the groceries and then delivery the items. There will just be several fees that you will need to shoulder if you avail of their service.
If you are someone who is looking for an opportunity for a side job, then this app can also help you with that. You can become one of their Shoppers and make money doing grocery shopping and delivering them.
You can be a part-time Shopper or an independent contractor. Becoming a Shopper is simple, as you just need to meet certain requirements.
In the next section, I’ll discuss in more detail the application process and how you can make money with Instacart.
How Do You Make Money with Instacart?
The only way for you to make money with Instacart is by becoming one of their Shoppers. You can be a part-time Shopper or an independent contractor.
Part-time Shoppers are paid a fixed hourly wage and are just in-store shoppers, which means they don’t need to deliver the grocery items.
Independent contractors get paid by commission and provide the full service of shopping and delivering the grocery items to customers’ homes.
Becoming a Shopper is free and simple to do so, as you just need to provide a name, email address, cell number, and zip code. You will also be required to give the company permission to perform a background check.
You also need to meet basic requirements to be a member, like being eligible to work in the U.S., at least 18 years old, and have consistent access and use of a recent smartphone (iPhone 5 or newer or Android 4.4 and newer).
You are also required to be able to lift at least 30 to 40 pounds. If you want to be an independent contractor, you will need consistent access to a vehicle.
You will also need to pass a vehicle or DMV check to make sure that the vehicle you will be using is functional and meets the minimum requirement of the state.
Once you are accepted, you will need to fill out some paper work. Independent contractors need to sign the W-9 tax form, while part-timers will need to sign the W-4 tax form.
Part-time Shoppers will also be required to attend an in-person orientation, which is about two hours. This will include hands-on training, to let them try out the job.
Once these are completed, you will just need to download the Instacart Shopper app as that is where you will receive the assignments.
The hours that Instacart offers are flexible, as you can set the hours that you are available to work. It seems slots per available hours, though, are limited. So you need to inform the company of your availability.
Part-time Shoppers can work up to 29 hours a week, while independent contractors can work as long as they want.
For the payment, part-time employees will be given an hourly wage and the amount will vary depending on the location you are working at.
Independent contractors get to earn commissions per job that they complete. The amount of money you can earn will depend on the shopping and delivery that you will complete.
The number of items you buy and if there are difficult items included will be a factor in determining how much you can earn.
The money you earn is paid weekly via direct bank deposit. Part-timers can also request a check to be mailed to their home.
As mentioned above, one of the main issues that people have with this opportunity is the pay. They deem it too low for the kind of work that they are doing, especially for an independent contractor.
One comment provided a reason why the pay is so low. The opportunity started well-allowing Shoppers to earn $1,200 to $1,500 a week.
But as Instacart kept on accepting new Shoppers, income started to drop since the opportunity to earn lessened as well. The areas now become saturated with Shoppers, making it harder to get a gig.
Having too many shoppers is also likely one of the reasons why it becomes harder to schedule your hours with Instacart.
There have been complaints that the company doesn’t allow some Shoppers to have an early selection of their hours, even if they have met the requirements to do so.
Some Shoppers also complain about the app being faulty. One complained that the app sent him to a different location, resulting in him losing money and a good rating.
Customers are also complaining that Instacart unreasonably increases the prices of the grocery items that they requested for purchase. Some even wonder if the cost of using the service is worth the added fees the company is asking for.
Lastly, it seems like Instacart’s customer service is useless since they rarely solve any problems or issues that both Shoppers and customers have. A lot complain that they always hear the “there’s nothing we can do” answer.
What I Like about Instacart
Now that we know what Instacart is and what it offers, it’s time to discuss what I like about this opportunity.
- One of the things that I like about Instacart is that they provide flexible hours with the job. You can decide when you want to work. This is good because you can really incorporate this opportunity into your schedule and working only when you have free time. This makes it a good secondary source of income.
- Another thing that I like about Instacart is that becoming a Shopper is easy and free to do so. You just need to meet certain requirements to be able to apply as a Shopper and start making money from this company.
What I Dislike about Instacart
As appealing as this opportunity sounds, there are also several things that I didn’t really like about this opportunity.
- The first thing that I didn’t like about Instacart is that the income potential is very low. There have been a lot of complaints from Shoppers that the pay they get is not really worth the work that they are doing. One even said that you should only accept this opportunity if you already have a main income and if you really have no other options for a side income.
- I also didn’t like that there are a lot of customers complaining about the quality of Instacart’s service and the markup that they are putting on the grocery items. I understand that they need to make money as well, but it would be better if the company or the Shoppers don’t try to take advantage of their customers by unreasonably marking up the prices of the grocery items.
- I also don’t like Instacart’s customer service, as both customers and Shoppers are not really happy with their experience in contacting them. Most of the time the customer service just replies with “there’s nothing we can do about it”, which is really not a good practice since you are saying to the customer or Shopper that they just have to accept their misfortune.
Do I Recommend Instacart?
After learning more about Instacart and what they can bring, I can say that this is an opportunity that I don’t really recommend.
Yes, the company offers flexible working hours, but that is actually the only positive thing that I can see with this opportunity.
There are just too many complaints about Instacart, particularly with its low pay, for me to even recommend this to anyone.
If you are looking for opportunities to make extra money, there are a lot better opportunities out there than what this app is able to offer. You are more likely to experience more headaches than be happy with this opportunity.