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Is Instacart Shopper A Genuine Side Hustle Or A Time-Wasting Venture?

You can get everything delivered. The name of the game is convenience. Whether its clothes, household items, or even groceries, there is someone out there willing to deliver it for a price. It’s easy to have someone deliver your items to your door.

These services need people to do their work. Customers would not be able to access these services without the people providing them. If you have a lot of time on your hands, you can pick up a side hustle. You don’t have to leave the house to make money online. Side hustles for people on the go include rideshare services and food delivery. Flexible schedules and the ability to work remotely make them attractive options for many people. You can get paid to shop. The added bonus of making money while shopping has made grocery shopping even more rewarding.

People can use an app to build a grocery list and have it delivered to them. If you want to have someone shop for and deliver your groceries, you can create a grocery list from your favorite store. This convenient service allows you to stay safe and save time while still ensuring that you have all of the groceries that you need.

This can be attractive to a customer. New customers are likely to be drawn in by this type of offer. We wanted to look at Instacart from a shopper’s point of view. Considering the high demand for online grocery delivery services, we thought it was important to review Instacart from a shopper’s point of view.

How much money can you make as an insta shopper? Depending on how many orders you’re able to complete in a given time period, the potential earnings can vary a lot. Find out below.

What is Instacart?

You can buy groceries online and have them delivered to your home. Many major cities in the U.S. and Canada have the delivery service.

You can either pick up groceries from the store or have an Instacart shopper prepare your order for you. It is a convenient and safe option for grocery shopping to have the shopper deliver the groceries to your doorstep.

One of the fastest-growing tech companies in North America was founded in 2012 by Apoorva Mehta. Over 5,000 cities and towns in the United States and Canada have been serviced by Instacart.

They operate in both North America and Canada. They offer services in a number of industries. There is great availability in both countries. Customers can shop for groceries from the comfort of their own homes with the help of Instacart. Many small towns are serviced through Instacart.

If you think your city is a good fit for Instacart, reach out to their team. As many cities and towns as possible, Instacart aims to provide convenient grocery delivery services to customers.

Instacart Shopper Options

You have two options when it comes to working for them. You can either be a full-service shopper, where you shop and deliver orders, or an in-store shopper, where you only shop for orders.

You can work either as a full-service shopper or an in-store shopper. You may need to travel to multiple stores in order to fulfill customer orders if you choose to work as an in-store shopper. There are benefits and drawbacks to each.

The details of each type of employment can be found here.

Instacart Full-Service Shopper

Full-service shoppers are the most popular way to earn through Instacart. Competitive rates and flexible hours make full-service shoppers a great option for extra income.

You can shop on your own schedule as a full-service shopper. It is possible to take advantage of exclusive discounts and offers that are not available elsewhere. You would deliver customers orders to their homes based on their specified delivery time. If you answered any questions the customers had, you would provide excellent customer service. You need your own vehicle to get to the store and the customer’s residence. You should make sure that you have adequate car insurance in case of accidents.

People who are already involved in personal shopping and transportation are welcome. Growth and advancement are offered by these industries. Anyone with access to a vehicle and the ability to shop and make orders can be a professional shopper.

Instacart Full-Service Shopper Requirements:

  • You must be at least 18 years or older
  • Eligible to work in the United States
  • Access to a vehicle
  • Access to a smartphone (iPhone 5 or Android 4.4 or newer models)
  • Ability to lift 50 pounds with or without accommodation

Instacart In-Store Shopper

If you don’t have consistent access to a vehicle, Instacart has other options to make money. You can be an instore shopper as well.

You will put together customers orders when you are in the store. Customers can come to the store and have the groceries loaded into their car if they prefer. An in-store employee will handle this task. The in-store employee of Instacart will make sure that the task is completed quickly, efficiently, and to the highest standard.

In-store shoppers are not independent contractors. In-store shoppers are usually employees of the store who are hired to fulfill customers’ shopping needs. They are not considered full-time employees. They aren’t eligible for the same benefits as full-time employees. You can still make a schedule that is flexible for you. You can make sure that your schedule is tailored to your needs by taking the time to plan ahead. You can work up to 29 hours per week. Flexible scheduling allows you to choose when to work.

If you are looking for seasonal, entry-level, weekend, or weekday work, working as an in-store shopper is a great option. It is possible to gain experience in customer service and retail by shopping in-store.

Instacart In-Store Shopper Requirements:

  • You must be at least 18 years or older
  • Eligible to work in the United States
  • Access to a smartphone (iPhone 5 or Android 4.4 or newer models)
  • Ability to lift 50 pounds with or without accommodation

How Much Do Instacart Shoppers Make?

The earnings tab shows you how much you make per week. They claim that shoppers can make up to $25 per hour, but most shoppers make between 14 and 18 per hour. Depending on the number of jobs they are able to secure, the exact amount a shopper will earn can vary a lot.

Like other forms of gig-based work, how much you make depends on how much time you invest in it. The number of hours you work, the number of orders you complete, and the type of orders you complete affect your earning. Selecting orders that you can complete quickly and efficiently will maximize your earnings.

You will earn more than someone who works an hour or two a day if you work the max number of hours per week. It’s important to take care of your mental and physical health first.

It isn’t bad for part-time contract work if your earning rate is variable.

The shoppers get to keep 100% of the tips. This benefit is great for shoppers who want to make more money. A customer can add a tip for up to three days after the order is placed. After the order has been placed, the customer should contact the restaurant to make any changes to their tip. As you complete your orders, keep this in mind. Before you submit your orders, be sure to double check them.

How Can I Maximize My Instacart Shopper Earnings?

There are a few things that you can do to make sure you get the most out of it. Efficient and strategic shopping for customers is one of the best ways to maximize your earnings.

Be available and eager. It’s important to show your enthusiasm and commitment for the job. If you have downtime that is available through Instacart, this will ensure that you have orders rolling in. You can use this time to improve your profile, so customers know you offer delivery services.

It is possible to earn more by following instructions closely, making deliveries on time, and being friendly. This will help build a good reputation, which will lead to more job opportunities and higher pay.

It is best to do everything you can to get a good tip, as tips can account for a large amount of your earnings. Excellent customer service is the best way to ensure your customers are satisfied and will leave a good tip.

Instacart Shopper Hours

You have to say when you are available to take orders. You should include any days or times when you can’t take orders.

You don’t have to hop on when you feel like it with Instacart. It requires you to place an order with Instacart and then schedule a delivery time that works best for you. Instacart wants its shoppers to be more consistent. In order to ensure the highest level of customer satisfaction, Instacart is offering incentives to shoppers who maintain consistent hours and performance.

People tend to buy their groceries on certain days. It is important to shop on days that are convenient for you. People’s shopping patterns are what Instacart wants to match.

You have to select hour blocks throughout the week. Don’t worry if you don’t get it perfect the first time, you can always adjust your availability. You can adjust your availability if you become unavailable. However, this can make it a difficult side hustle for people that have everchanging schedules.

Signing Up For Instacart Shopper Jobs

How do you get started as a shopper? Once you are approved, you can start shopping and earning money.

You have to go to their website first. Signing up for a free account will allow you to explore the features they offer. They will ask you about your phone after you give them basic personal information. The information you provide will be used by the customer service representative to assist you. They want to know how reliable your phone is and what model it is. Before you submit your application, make sure your phone meets all of their requirements.

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You will be asked to provide a driver’s license and preferred method of payment. In order to complete the purchase, a valid form of identification is required.

The background check is the last step. Instacart will do a background check on you to make sure you don’t have any problems on your record. This can take a week or two. If necessary, the process can be expedited. You should be approved after you are cleared. You will have access to all of the classes you need to register for once your approval is complete.

Pros and Cons

There are things to love and things to hate. Make sure you’re still having fun by finding the right balance between the two. It’s no different working as an instacart shopper.

There are some advantages and disadvantages to working for Instacart. It’s possible to work when it’s best for you.


  • You can make money on your own time with a flexible schedule. You can focus on the things that matter most if you have a flexible schedule. You can choose the hours that work for you and adjust your schedule as you go. You can earn money on your own terms with Instacart. This applies to both full-service and in-store shoppers. It is important to always be aware of safety protocols, no matter how you shop.
  • Everyone has to go grocery shopping so there is nothing you need to learn to do. As long as you are adept reading customer instructions and can make deliveries on time, you should have success
  • Getting started on Instacart is as easy as filling out some documents online. You’re ready to start shopping for customers once the documents are done. You will need to attend an in-person orientation if you want to work as an in-store shopper. Everything can be done from the comfort of your home. With the current restrictions in place, you may be unable to do some activities that you would normally do, but don’t worry, there are still plenty of ways to stay entertained and have fun!


  • Not every order will pay you well. It’s important to remember that even if you don’t get paid a lot for some orders, it can still be worthwhile if you build relationships with customers. A customer that only needs two items lives 20 miles away. If you pass on every low paying opportunity, you may run into trouble. If you always pass on low paying opportunities, you may be missing out on valuable experiences. If you reject too many orders in a day, you will be kicked out of the app. You can have a negative impact on your performance on the platform if you reject orders too frequently.
  • This is a service job and there are bad customers. No matter how good of a job you do, there will be some customers that aren’t polite or appreciative. If a customer is rude, don’t take it personally and remember that you can’t please everyone.
  • The Instacart app isn’t perfect. The Instacart app is appreciated by many users despite its flaws. The app allows two shoppers to accept the same order. The customer and the shopper can be confused by this. You can go to the store, purchase groceries, and deliver them to the customer only to find out that someone else made it there first. The customer is likely to choose the other delivery option. The silver lining? You can keep the groceries for free. You can easily track your order with Instacart so you know when to get your groceries.

Instacart Shopper FAQs

How Does Instacart Make Money?

Delivery fees are the first way that Instacart makes money. commission fees are charged to partner grocery stores. The prices for orders over $35 and under $35 are $5.99 and $7.99, respectively. Free delivery is offered on orders over $35.

optional membership fees are also charged by Instacart. They have a service called Instacart Express. Customers can enjoy free delivery on orders over $35 with the Instacart Express subscription. Customers who pay an annual fee of $149 get free delivery on all orders over $35.

An important source of revenue is grocery partnerships. grocery stores know that grocery delivery will affect their business. There are grocery stores that offer services through the store. Customers can shop for groceries without leaving their homes with this partnership. The revenue from the purchases is shared by the companies. Both companies will benefit from the deal and grow their businesses.

Instacart partners with brands to drive revenue. Customers can access exclusive offers on their favorite products through these partnerships. Special deals and discounts can be found through the app. You can take advantage of the deals by using the app on your mobile device. This is a way for brands to drive sales and for customers to save.

Are There Any Hidden Costs?

Unfortunately, yes. Before you start working with Instacart, there are a number of costs to take into account.

They don’t reimburse you for gas. They don’t provide a car or any other type of transportation for their employees. If you make deliveries to customers who live far away, this can make a huge difference. It reduces the need for extra trips and can save you time and money in the long run. You can write off the miles you drive when you file your taxes. Tracking your mileage throughout the year can help you find tax savings. This can help you get some of your money back. Make sure to use the most up-to-date tax software you can find.

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It’s time to save some of the money you make for taxes. You should put money aside for unforeseen expenses. The IRS requires you to make quarterly tax payments if you don’t withdraw taxes from your pay.

You will get a form that tells you how much you made and how much you owe. At the end of each quarter, you should put 25% of your money into a savings account. It’s important to set aside enough money each month to cover unforeseen costs.

How Do I Complete Orders?

30 minutes before the start time, orders come through. All orders need to be ready before the start time. You have some time to decide if you want to take the order or not.

You can only pass on a number of orders per session before the app kicks you out. It’s important to take regular breaks.

If you accept the order, you would head to the grocery store and start shopping.

You can check off items on the shopping list with the app. The app will let you know that the list is complete once you have checked off all items. You can note this if the item isn’t available. You can indicate if an item has been returned or exchanged before. You can communicate with the customer about a substitute item. If you don’t have all of the items on the list, wash, rinse, and repeat. You can be proud of your accomplishments once you have completed the list.

How Do I Pay For Orders?

If you’re worried about having to pay for other people’s groceries, Instacart has you covered. It is possible to pay with various payment options to make sure you are always in control of your budget.

Each shopper has a special card that is used for Instacart orders. As you pick up orders, the card has funds on it. You don’t have to carry cash when using the card to pay for purchases. If you go over that amount, it will decline your order. You can always check your previous orders if you keep a record of all the orders it processes.

To front the money for customers, you don’t have to use your own cards or bank account. It increases the chances of customers making a purchase.

Alternatives to Instacart Shopper Jobs

You can deliver for more than one grocery delivery app if you have two apps open at the same time.

If you want to maximize on grocery delivery as a side gig, here are some other apps you should consider. You can use these apps to increase your earnings potential.


You can work on your own schedule with the popular grocery delivery app, Shipt. You don’t need to have previous delivery experience to work at Shipt.

As a You make 7.5% of the total order cost, $5 for delivery, and any tips added. Within five business days, you will be paid for your work. You can make up to $22 per hour, but this pay projection is not guaranteed. It is important to remember that the amount of tips you receive can vary from day to day.

It’s easy to boost your earnings through the app if you shop more than one order at a time. New workers who excel get bonuses. Employees who demonstrate superior performance may be given additional vacation days or financial rewards.

Shoppers spend a lot of their time texting with customers regarding substitute items on their order, which is one of the major complaints about Shipt. Shoppers need to consider the extra time it takes to travel to and from each delivery location. Poor tips can be a result of this drag out process. To maximize customer satisfaction, it is important to prioritize efficiency when taking and delivering orders.

Learn More:


Deliv pays drivers to deliver more than just groceries. The app is easy to use and can be used by drivers.

In major US cities, Deliv promises a maximum pay of $22 per hour. Deliv has a flexible work schedule that allows you to decide when and where you want to work. The reported pay is not as high as this. This has led to a lot of frustration among the employees, who feel that their hard work is not being appreciated.

Deliv drivers make between $10 and $12 per hour, which is half of their advertised rate. Drivers who work within hourly blocks may not be compensated if they don’t have any orders during that time. You will only be paid for active driving time if you have contracted hours. A plus of working with Deliv is that they offer supplemental

If your insurance company doesn’t cover something, you need insurance. If your insurance company doesn’t cover something, it’s a good idea to have a backup plan and purchase additional insurance. It is an option for people in major cities. There are other local delivery services that could provide an alternative to the larger national brands.

Amazon Flex

As a part of the largest online retailer, Amazon Flex is able to compensate more than any other delivery app.
Drivers for Amazon Flex can earn up to $25 per hour. The minimum pay on this delivery app is above the minimum wage.

It isn’t a perfect app. Some drivers say they have to drive an hour or more to get to the warehouse. It can be difficult to get to the warehouse, especially during rush hour. If the customer isn’t home, you have to return the packages. Before heading out for a delivery, make sure to double check the instructions.

Amazon Flex is a great opportunity for people who live in close proximity to an Amazon warehouse. Amazon Flex is an attractive option for those looking to supplement their income.

Should You Become an Instacart Shopper?

One of the better grocery delivery apps is Instacart. It’s great for people who don’t have the time to shop in-store.

Many apps don’t offer options for people who don’t own a car, and other apps have specific requirements for what kind of car you drive. Public transportation and ride-sharing services are available for those who don’t own a car.

If you have large chunks of free time, have a depreciated vehicle, and want to earn $300 per week, Instacart is a great option for you.

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