For awhile in West Michigan, grocery delivery service, Shipt, has reigned supreme, with others offering pick up directly at the store. Another competitor has entered the fray, Instacart, who finally decided that it was time to meet demand in the area.
Do you ever find yourself having spent too much time at the grocery store? Bobbing and weaving among the other customers, wondering if you really should have gotten that impulse buy, and then realizing you forgot about five things on your list? The grocery delivery service Shipt has been helping to ease some grocery shopper angst, by having others do the shopping for them. If you’ve been on the side lines waiting to try it out, Shipt has a great offer going on right now, where you can get your first two weeks free, and $15 off your first order. If you’re a Bank of America customer, you might be in for even more savings!
There is no doubt that one of the biggest impacts on a family's budget is that of the grocery store. Depending on what time of day you go, and your patience level, it could also impact your "mental" budget as it were. We first wrote about the home grocery delivery service, Shipt, back in March, and their partnership with Meijer. While Shipt originally got its start in 2014, launching in Birmingham, AL, the company has continued to grow and expand partnerships, such as that with Meijer.
Growing up in the Midwest, Meijer was, and has been a pretty household name when it comes to picking up your daily household necessities. Over time though, customers increasingly busy lives have led to companies like HelloFresh, Blue Apron, and now Shipt realizing that they could provide that convenience of picking up food for customers, while saving them time in the process. We were recently able to take advantage of a promotion that Shipt was running over the Memorial Day holiday, and thought we would give it a try. Read below the jump for our review.
What is Shipt?
From the company's "About" page:
Founded on the mission of simplifying lives, Shipt serves members, shoppers, and communities by offering convenience and freedom.
Through a user-friendly app and a local network of reliable shoppers, Shipt connects members to fresh groceries and everyday essentials. Saving time, fuel and headspace, next-hour, same day grocery delivery is quickly becoming an everyday necessity for people looking for an extra few hours and intentional food choices.
Now in over 50 cities and counting, Shipt works with vetted shoppers who are able to set their own schedules and are constantly aiming to improve member experiences through a newly developed rating system. By partnering with retailers in each city, shoppers are able to move efficiently through stores. Befriending store employees and fellow shoppers has been an organic product of the process!
A Shipt Second Saved, is a Shipt Penny...Earned?
Okay, now that you're a little more familiar with them, onto our review. As the above suggests, you can peruse your store's inventory via either the app, or as well as on their website. You do have to purchase the membership though to take part, and your order needs to be at least $35 to get free delivery - which anymore with the price of some groceries - shouldn't be difficult at all to hit.
The day we decided to try it, it was quite nice as my wife and I were able to "co-add" things to our list throughout the day. Once you think you have everything, you pick a payment method, the time frame you would like to have your groceries delivered (usually at least an hour or so from when you place your order), and then you play the waiting game!
Our experience was great. Once our time frame came up, we received a text from our shopper letting us know he was starting to grab our items. They also sent us a text when an item we wanted wasn't available and wanted to know if we still wanted it, or wanted a substitution. Once they were done, we received a notification that our order was complete, along with the final total (sometimes Shipt may bill your card with a hold for more than your order, just in case of substitutions, etc). They then let us know they were on their way, but also if we wanted anything else, to let them know too.
Our shopper was very polite and friendly, and explained that they try to shop for their customers like they would for their own family. You could tell, as any produce we selected, was in great shape, and perfectly sized.
However, convenience does come with a price. As you're going through items, you will notice that many may have a higher price tag than what you're used to in the store, presumably to help the company with some of their overhead. As they mention above though, frequently customers don't mind paying that little extra for the convenience added. Our shopper did say that while you currently can't use mPerks on your order, they are looking into their own loyalty program for the future. They also offer frequent deals where some items will actually be on sale, or you can save money by purchasing from a specific group of items.
Shipt Summer Roll Out
All in all, our experience was very enjoyable, and we did appreciate the convenience. In the future, we may check to see if mPerks are first available for any of the items we might need, or if say most of them could be obtained from Aldi. The temptation though of not having to deal with the masses at the store might just be too great though.
While the company has mainly started roll-out of its services in Michigan, expect to see more availability in the Midwest below this month!
That said, if you haven't had a chance to sign up yet, if you use our referral link, we'll both get $10 in free groceries, which can help offset that initial sign up cost a bit. Thank you in advance if you should decide to do so! Certainly if you have any more questions, or would like to know more, feel free to leave a comment below!
“We are excited to expand our relationship with Shipt because together we can offer customers across the Midwest a whole new level of convenience, product variety, and service not available before,” Meijer President & CEO Rick Keyes said. “Now customers can shop a complete grocery list online, having access to our world class assortment of fresh produce, meat, dairy and a number of other essentials that Shipt will hand select from a local Meijer store and deliver to a customer’s doorstep.”
Starting March 29, Grand Rapids Meijer customers will be able to shop 55,000 items across the Meijer landscape, utilizing Shipt's smartphone app (iOS, Android), or by placing orders directly through Shipt.com. Customers will be able to schedule their orders to be received in a little under an hour.
“The way our customers shop continues to evolve,” said Meijer Chairman Hank Meijer. “We believe the high-touch service that Shipt offers, coupled with what our customers love about shopping at Meijer, creates a new type of shopping experience.”
The only catch (and you knew there would be one), is that Shipt is membership-based with either annual or monthly options. For $99 a year, members of Shipt can receive unlimited grocery deliveries on all orders over $35.
While the convenience may be worthwhile for some, one can't help but wonder what this might mean for a lot of Meijer's current employees. The landscape of shopping in the US and across the world certainly seems to be evolving more or and more to online and automation vs the brick and mortar landscape as many other retailers have begun to realize. Time should tell.