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How to Make Money on Instacart (Newest)

How to Make Money on Instacart

Are you looking for a part-time job or just a way to make a little extra side hustle? Look no further! With the likes of Uber, Netflix, and Amazon, we truly live in an online economy.

 It is easier than ever to want something here and now and get it at your doorstep, office, or even a public park. Some of the biggest companies globally, such as Amazon, have built their name around consumer demand. 

What about groceries? We can order fast food, coffee, desserts, and fine dining at the click of a button. Have groceries been left behind? Instacart is trying to fill that gap in the market by offering groceries delivered to your door within hours.

Take a Look ↓↓↓

Today, we will be discussing How to Make Money on Instacart and what working for them entails…

What Is Instacart?


Instacart is a marketplace that allows people to buy food in their local area and receive their items within an hour. It is an American-owned company headquartered in San Francisco. The company operates in cities throughout North America and offers groceries from the most well-known retailers in the states. 

People shop via an app, and you can choose popular supermarkets, independent stores, pharmacies, liquor stores, butchers, and wholesalers on the app. Pretty much, whatever you need, they’ve got it. 

No time for grocery shopping…

Founded by Apoorva Mehta, Max Mullen, and Brandon Leonardo in San Francisco in 2012. The idea has created over 10,000 jobs for the American economy and has earned over $1.4 billion in revenue. The idea was developed when Mehta, who worked 14-hour days, couldn’t find time to do a grocery shop.

 He had already had 20 unsuccessful start-up businesses, but this would be the one that changed his life.

How Does Instacart Work?

How Does Instacart Work

Customers can schedule delivery within the hour or later in the week when they are available. Customers can also sign up for Instacart Express, which means they pay for unlimited delivery throughout the year, a smart move if it’s your go-to weekly shop! 

The Instacart employees who are stationed near the grocery store of your choice will shop for you, pack up the bags and bring the groceries directly to your home. 

Connect with your shopper while in-store…

Connect with your shopper while in-store

Customers have access to over 300,000 items, so they can always choose exactly what they want. The app also allows customers to connect with their shoppers in case there are any preferences in their shop. 

To pay for your items on Instacart, you can use various payment methods such as credit or debit card, Apple Pay, Google Pay, or EBT card. If you spend over $35, the delivery charge is $3.99; if you spend under, the delivery charge is $7.99. There is also a standard service fee of $2 for every transaction. The annual payment option costs $99 for the year, but customers are still liable to pay the service fee.

How does Instacart make money?

They make money by marking up prices on goods by 15%, allowing them to profit from the app. In 2015 the company was valued at $2.5 million. As of 2020, the company was worth $17.7 billion and continues to grow.

How Much Money Can You Make On Instacart?

How Much Money Can You Make On Instacart

Workers for Instacart claim that it can vary greatly how much you earn. The size of the order, the area you live, time of day, and any day of the week are all factors that can cause you to earn a different salary.

 Indeed claims that an Instacart shopper’s average salary is $38,443 per year. You can choose from both part-time and full-time roles. Remember, in-store and full-service shoppers have different roles that come with other benefits and responsibilities. 

Two different types of shoppers…

Two different types of shoppers

A full-service shopper will work as an independent contractor and fill unlimited orders of your own. As an in-store shopper, you will be considered an employee of Instacart. You will receive orders directly from a client and hand the order to an Instacart delivery driver who will deliver the products. This is handy if you don’t have a driver’s license to apply for the in-store shopper role. 

The Pros Of Working For Instacart

Flexible Schedule

Full-service workers have the luxury of choosing when they want to work. This is great if you can motivate yourself to work. The best working time is evening and weekends; this is when you’ll receive the most orders. In-store shoppers can work 29 hours a week, and the store will allow you to choose your hours. 

Enjoyable Workday

Enjoyable Workday

There are no rules while working apart from store etiquette, of course. You can dress how you like, listen to music, podcasts or audiobooks as you search for customer products and fill your basket. You may also pick up on the best deals in each store and cut your grocery shopping spending. Win-win!


Instacart workers are paid by the hour and not on a commission. This means the base rate for an employee is $13.40 per hour, but they also earn tips from their customers, which is a bonus. Like many places, the more you work, the more rewards and incentives you receive. 

This should be normal for every big company, but you’d be surprised. Instacart ensures employees receive payment on time. Shoppers can expect payment weekly through a direct deposit into their bank accounts. 

Customer Service Skills

Customer Service Skills

If you are just starting in the working world, a job like this is a great way to build up your customer service experience. It’s great to add to your resume, and you can learn new skills and develop your knowledge of customer service. You will communicate with a huge variety of customers from different walks of life. This will help you build your soft skills.

The Cons Of Working For Instacart

Additional Expenses

Additional Expenses

If you become a full-time service shopper, you will have to cover things like gas and maintenance on your vehicle. You will also have to pay taxes and deal with that accordingly. 

Insurance and Health Benefits

Unfortunately, Instacart doesn’t offer any health, vision, or dental insurance. If you are an in-store shopper who works 29 hours a week, you do not qualify for the health benefits which are offered to employees who work 30 hours or more. 

Hard Work

Hard Work

Working in this type of role can be difficult and demanding at times. If a shop is out of the product that a client wants, you must find a replacement if there has been an option given. 

You may also have to frequently communicate with store workers to ask if a product is available from the stock room. This can be time-consuming and annoying. If multiple items are missing, your client may cancel an order out of frustration, wasting your time.

Variety of Demand

Like many businesses, demand varies, whether it be online clothing stores, restaurants, or boutiques. Some days you will be run off your feet; others, you will be waiting for an order to come through. If orders are low during peak times, you may not make enough money even to cover your expenses. This can cause quite a stressful work life. 

Communication Problems

Communication Problems

If items are unavailable, you can communicate with clients to let them know. If they do not get back to you, you may be left wondering what the next step is. If they get back to you later after completing the shop, it may cause problems or sacrifice tip money.

 Communication through apps can sometimes be challenging, especially if your clients are busy with work and can’t pick up their phones. 

How To Make Money On Instacart – Become A Shopper

How To Make Money On Instacart - Become A Shopper


If you are looking for a flexible job and are 18 and above, an Instacart position could be for you. You should be allowed to work in the USA, and it’s always an added benefit if you have a car, especially if you are going for a full-service role. 

Instacart will run a background check on you, so if you have any previous felonies, it may cause a bump in the road. Let’s take a look at the steps to becoming an Instacart shopper.

1 – Create an account

First of all, you must create an account on the official Instacart website. You will fill in all the essential information about yourself, such as date of birth, full name, and address.

2 – Download the App

Download the App

Take a look on Google Play or your Apple store to find the Instacart Shopper App. You must download this to finalize your account. You will have to include additional information to complete the application process.

3 – Background Check

Once you have completed the steps, Instacart will run a background check on you. It takes a maximum of ten business days. Once the background check is complete, you may be able to dive straight into work, or you may be put on a waitlist.

Instacart Waitlist

Due to the demands of online shopping during the global pandemic, Instacart hired a considerable amount of workers in 2020. If you are interested in an in-store position, you may be put on a waitlist until there is a need for your service. The average waitlist is around two months, but it was recently reported that people have been on their waitlist for 14 months.

How To Make Money On Instacart

Choose the Area Wisely

This is super important. Picking an area you want to work in will affect your client base and orders. Of course, you don’t want to choose somewhere a 3-hour drive from your home. That’s just silly and not cost-effective. Instead, research the areas that make the most orders online and go for them. The app helps you by pinpointing high-demand areas; these flag up in orange and red.

Be Selective

Be Selective


Instacart does pay people 0.66 per mile. However, if you choose somewhere closer, you can collect more batches. Savvy shoppers usually wait for an order that pays $30 per hour. Taking orders nearby will reduce delivery time and therefore mean you can start your next order quickly. 

Favorable batches are available morning, evening, and on weekends. Having a reduced delivery time can result in more tips, which boosts your salary. But remember, don’t reject too many orders when you start. Instacart does prioritize shoppers on the number of orders they take, so at the beginning, be smart but also pick up orders if you have already declined four that day. 

Peak Hours

Working during peak hours is really the way to go. Especially when you start, it means you will be kept busy, you can build your ratings, and you can then begin to prioritize batches and orders you want to complete. The app offers a pay incentive to people who work during peak hours and are in high demand.

 You can see the batches before you pick your shifts to give you a rough idea of your workload for the day.

Time Management Skills

Time Management Skills

It is important to work promptly. Your steps are not tracked, nor are you working on commission, but it is helpful to try and get orders completed quickly and delivered to the customer on time. Don’t spend too much time looking for a perfect replacement; this is where many shoppers waste time. Find something appropriate and add it to your basket and move on. 

After working in the same supermarket, you will likely be familiar with the layout of the store; this also helps with your time management because you can sweep through the aisles quickly and get what’s needed. Another great tip is parking near the exit of the store to take the groceries directly to your car, jump in and get on your way. 

Customer Rating

Like Uber, customers can rate their shopper and their communication with them. A negative review can affect your pay and affect the tip you receive. Customer ratings hugely influence your batches too. High-rated shoppers get to view batches and choose first. 

This is a little difficult when you’re first starting, but after you gain five-star reviews, you will be able to access the higher batches first. To get an excellent review, you must communicate with your client if need be in a professional manner, choose appropriate replacements, deliver on time, and pay attention to delivery details. 

FAQ About Instacart

Is it possible to earn $100 per day?

Actually, yes! There are additional ways to make money other than your hourly pay. This comes from tips and referral bonuses. If you refer a friend and they complete 45 batches in 30 days.

How much can I make on Instacart?

Your salary will differ depending on how many hours you work. However, according to Glassdoor, the average salary for an Instacart worker is $35,948 per year. 

How does Instacart pay employees?

best places to find the employees online

You have the option to access your tips after 24 hours, but you must have completed five batches for the day. Most people choose to be paid weekly via a direct deposit to their bank account.

Are there any requirements to work with Instacart?

You must be at least 18 years old and legally permitted to work in the US. You must also have a registered vehicle with the appropriate insurance and a smartphone to accept orders. If you have a disability, there is a separate form you can fill out during your application. 

Are there growth opportunities with Instacart?

Are there growth opportunities with Instacart

Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like it. According to reviews of the company, the platform occasionally offers performance bonuses for high-performing shoppers. 

Want To Work For Uber Eats?

Well, of course, I’ll start with my Instacart Application, if you’re eager to apply, or how about my Uber Application and Uber Eats Application, as well as my 8 Apps That Let You Get Paid The Same Day, for alternative job ideas. Although if you have a criminal record, please read Can A Felon Drive For Uber, and Food Delivery Jobs For Felons, before moving forward.

Need to gear up for your new Uber delivery job? No problem, I found the Embroidered Uber Eats Hat for Mens Womens Camo Sun Hat, as well as the Zamroiirts Baseball Caps Uber Eats Visor Hat Adjustable Men Women, and Uber Eats Super Soft Fashion Men’s Short Sleeve t-Shirt, or maybe the Knitted Uber Eats Beanie for Men&Women, Soft Winter Thermal Cap, for those cold winter months.

Keeping the food hot hot hot is your No. 1 Priority! So, I recommend using the Food Delivery Bag for Uber Eats, Insulated Grocery Shopping Bag for Catering, along with the Insulated Food Delivery Bag with Cup Holders for Uber Eats, and finally, the Food Delivery Bag Insulated Backpack, Waterproof Uber Eats Pizza Delivery Bag, all available online in 2023.

How To Make Money On Instacart – Final Thoughts

Working for Instacart is a great side hustle to make some extra money or an add-on while you are at school or college. 

It is convenient, pays by the hour, and pays weekly. You can earn more money with better ratings and work during peak hours. Remember that Instacart has two options; if you choose a full-service shopper, you need to have access to your own vehicle.

Good luck shopping for Instacart, and drive safely!

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About Linda Shepard

Linda is employed by one of the biggest employment agencies in San Francisco and has over 15 years of experience in finding her clients their dream job. She prides herself on being able to match the right person to the right position, which inevitably creates a great working relationship for the employee and the company moving forward.

When she isn't writing articles or working, she enjoys gardening, socializing, and going for long walks on the beach and in nature.

She lives with her boyfriend Carl and their cat, Fluffy.

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