Instacart 🥕🛒 101: How to Read the Batch Offer Screen

Updated : Jan 14, 2020 in Articles

Instacart 🥕🛒 101: How to Read the Batch Offer Screen

What’s up all your Instacart shoppers out
there? I’m Chad The Gig Economist, and this video is the first in a 3-part series of tutorials
designed to walk you through the Instacart Shopper app so you know what to expect on
your first day as Full Service Shopper. This tutorial series isn’t about speed tips
and life hacks, but about familiarizing yourself with the Shopper app and the essentials of
the job. If you’re watching this, I’m going to assume you’ve already got your
hours scheduled and you have all the necessary tools to do the job. If you don’t know what
I’m talking about, watch my videos about those topics before you watch this one. So if you’ve got hours scheduled and you’re
ready, willing and able to start working for Instacart, let me show you what you need to
know before you even get started shopping your first batch. Before you get started, make sure you have
notifications turned on for the Shopper app. I would select every type of alert and enable
sounds (the app doesn’t use badges yet). For banner style, make sure you set it to
“Persistent,” so the notifications will stay on your screen until you acknowledge
them. You’ll never miss a batch offer with persistent banners; even if you don’t hear
the notification chime. Another thing you should do before every shift
is make sure your phone is fully charged because the Shopper app drains the battery like a
sieve. You can slow this down by closing out all other apps and setting your phone to low
power mode for your entire shift. You can also connect your phone to a portable charger
while you shop as an extra precaution. Instacart will send you a reminder about your
upcoming shift about a half hour ahead of time. Make sure you have the Shopper app launched
within the first five minutes of your shift or you’ll receive an error that the GPS
can’t find you. This is a normal error, just launch the app and you’ll be fine. Once you’re on shift with the app open,
you’ll see your location as a green dot on a map. You can move the map around and
zoom in and out to see the boundaries of your zone. If it’s busy, you’ll see “hotspots”
around stores that are receiving a lot of orders. I actually don’t recommend going
straight to one of the hotspots when your shift first starts unless you’re really
far away from the closest store. At some point into your shift (which could
be 5 seconds, 30 minutes, or a few hours), Instacart will send you a batch offer that
has all the basics of the order that they want you to shop. Once you launch the Shopper
app, you’ll hear a beeping sound and see a 4-minute countdown timer. You’ll also
see a map showing where you are, where the store is, and where the customer is. If you
tap on the store or the house icon, it’ll show you the address for those places. I recommend
moving the map so that the customer’s address is at the top. Then pull up on the batch offer
so you can see all the pertinent details. Take a screen shot of this and save it for
future reference. The most obvious detail will be the earnings
estimate in large bold numbers. Yes it’s an estimate, not a guarantee. The only thing
that’s guaranteed is Instacart’s portion of the payment. The customer’s tip can fluctuate
by a few cents or a few dollars depending on changes made to their order. If you do
an amazing job they might bump their tip way up. Or, if you do a terrible job they might
pull their tip altogether. If they rate you 5 stars, Instacart will give you a $3 quality
bonus (but only on full-service orders; not on delivery-only orders). In the next section you’ll see what type
of batch this is. Most of the time it’s a single Full Service Order, but sometimes
Instacart will piggyback two or even three small orders together in one batch. It might
also be a delivery-only order or orders. I will make a video showing you how to handle
double and triple full service orders and double and triple delivery-only orders, but
don’t worry about those right now. Next, it will tell you how many unique items
you have to shop for and how many total items you need to pick. Pay attention to this because
it gives you a good idea of how long it’s going to take to shop that order and you can
decide whether the pay is worth it or not. The next line will tell you the distance from
the store to the customer. Instacart pays you 60 cents a mile from the store to the
customer. If there’s a closer store to you and it’s partnered with Instacart, you can
shop there if you want, but Instacart will not comp you for the additional mileage. So
take a good look at the map screen and decide whether the mileage to the store is worth
it because those miles are on you. Also, consider the location of the customer. If the customer
is way out in the middle of nowhere, you will have to deadhead all the way back to the nearest
affiliated store and all those miles are on you, too. Then there are a few optional items. If there’s
a shortage of shoppers and/or an abundance of orders, you might see a “Peak Boost”
included. You’ll also notice a flame icon next to the batch earnings estimate. Don’t
feel obligated to take every batch offer with a peak boost; not all of them are worth your
time and mileage. Once in a while you’ll see yet another line
that says “Heavy order pay included” which means this customer is ordering heavy items
like cases of bottled water or kitty litter. The problem is, unlike the peak boost, Instacart
doesn’t indicate how much the heavy order pay actually is. In fact, they don’t have
any documentation in the Shopper Help Center that explains how this pay is calculated,
it’s totally cryptic. So think of “heavy order pay included” more of a warning than
anything else. Finally, you will see preview pictures of
all the items the customer ordered at the bottom of the screen. Scroll through these
items on every batch offer no matter how few or how many items the customer wants. Specifically
look for deli and prepared food items because they will affect how you’ll plan your shopping
route (I’ll explain why in the next video). If you’ve decided to accept the batch offer,
just tap the big green button at the bottom. Once you do this, you’re now obligated to
complete the shopping and/or delivery. There’s no way to cancel a batch after you’ve accepted
it, so only take batches you know you can handle and will be worth your time for the
pay being offered. If you change your mind, you can try calling Shopper Happiness and
ask them to unassign you from the batch, but most of the time they won’t unless it’s
an emergency. Accepting the batch will bring you to another
screen that will show you the name and address of the store. If you tap the button next to
it, this will launch your designated GPS app and send you on your way. You’ll also see
the customer’s first name and how many orders they’ve placed with Instacart. If it’s
their first order, you’ll see a gold star with “new customer” next to it. Along the bottom is another button you swipe
to start shopping. Don’t swipe it until you’re inside the store and you’ve got
your cart ready. Once you do, send your customer your welcome message by going to the top right
corner and tapping the text icons, then paste it into the chat. If you don’t know what
I’m talking about, check out my video about the three messages you should send to every
customer on every batch. By the way, you usually have one hour from
the time you accept the batch until the time you swipe to start shopping. Instacart will
send you a reminder after 30 minutes urging you to get started. They’ll send you a “Final
Notice” around 50 minutes. If you go 60 or sometimes 70 minutes without actually starting
on the batch, you will be unassigned from the batch, you’ll be kicked off shift, and
you’ll receive a reliability incident. If you tap “Ready to Shop” immediately after
this happens and you go the rest of your shift without any other incidents, that R.I. will
be forgiven. But if this happens either at the end of your shift or it happens after
like 8pm, you won’t have the option of going back online and you’ll be stuck with the
R.I. If you don’t want the batch you’re being
offered, there isn’t much you can do. Obviously, you could just not touch anything and let
the timer count down to zero. The problem is that even if you switch to another app
you’ll still hear the sonar-like beeping sound and it’s really annoying. The better
option is to just kill the Shopper app entirely. This will mute the countdown sound, but you’ll
still have to wait for the timer to run out. Once it does, you’ll see a notification
that the batch has been removed. In either case the app will ask why you didn’t accept
the batch offer. I recommend selecting “other” and use key words and phrases like “pay
too low” or “mileage too high” and of course “no tip.” The closest thing Instacart has to a decline
button is the “Take a break” button in the top left. You only get to use this once
per shift, so use it wisely. This will put you on break for 20 minutes which means you
won’t be offered any batches during that time and you can still use the Shopper app
to check your earnings or hours or whatever. Like I said, this was just the first in a
trilogy of video tutorials to prepare you for your first day. In the next installment
I’m going to show you shopping route strategies, using the Shopper app to “pick” items,
and how to handle standard changes. Then in the final installment I’ll go over the checkout
process, loading your car, and actually completing the delivery. Of course, I encourage you to subscribe to
this channel so you don’t miss any of my future Instacart videos. While you’re here,
why not check out some of my past Instacart videos; or my videos on the other gig economy
platforms like Uber, Lyft, Doordash, Postmates and Amazon Flex. As always, I appreciate every viewer out there,
so thanks for watching and I will see you real soon. Bye!


  • Interested in becoming an Instacart shopper? Click here to apply:

  • Thank you for your blogs. I really need to get more prepared before starting. My question for you is, do I have to sign up for the work schedule? I work a full time job and was planning on just jumping in persai after I get off work.

  • thank you for no added noise music etc because i watched one and he had good tips but had a swishing noise that literally gave me a migraine

  • I keep different agents telling me that I need different amounts of insulated bags that can hold 3 bags full bags cold all the way up to 10 full bags of cold groceries. It's VERY annoying & is making me miss out in making money.

  • the screenshot you have of the batch summary, is it only iPhones that get that? I cant find nor have I ever gotten a batch summary and I've always wished I could see a summary of some of my orders

  • Hey I have an issue with the batch offers you had mentioned about seeing the items that the customers wanted and writing down what they want on their Deli Subs however I don't get that information on mine you is it just an iPhone thing

  • Hi Chad, instacart like to send me to a store that's in a different town rather than sending me to the store that is in the customers town. I have to call all the time to get it changed. Your saying I can go to the store I want(same chain) without calling them?

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