How the shopper Earnings Structures working?

Last year, a team of Instacart spend a week with sixteen shoppers shopped together, learned about their experiences with Instacart, and got their feedback for a new earnings structure aimed at providing more transparency and consistency across orders.

Since then, they have been slowly testing the new earnings structures in more markets, gathering feedback along the way, and calibrating the approach to make a better new model for shoppers. They collected the feedback through surveys, in-person sessions, the Shopper Experience Council, and from their Community Support agents who hear from the shoppers everyday. In every test market, the shoppers have told that they prefer new earnings to the existing structure.

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Details On the New Earnings Structure

When it comes to earnings, there are several key themes that are really important to the shoppers. First, they need more transparency about the details of each batch prior to accepting orders to help them make better, more informed decisions based on their availability and earnings goals. Second, the earnings structure should be order driven — offering more consistency based on the time and difficulty of each batch.

Based on the shopper feedback, these themes became key tenets of the new earnings structure, which offers:

Batch Transparency: Shoppers will be able to preview additional information before accepting batches — including an estimated earnings total, the specific items in the batch, and a map with store and customer addresses. After completing each batch, shoppers will also see a breakdown of total earnings.

Pay Per Mile: In response to one of the top shopper requests, instacart will now pay per mile from the suggested store to delivery location(s).

Batch Consistency: Shoppers have told that each batch is unique, and the payments did not always seem proportionate. As part of this new earnings structure will now consider a wider range of factors in calculating the Batch Incentive, including number of units, types of items, retailer, store location, and special requests, among others.

Quality Bonus: Get a bonus for every five-star rating on Full-Service orders.

Customer Tips: As always, Shoppers receive 100% of customer tips.

Peak Hour Pay Boosts: Occasionally, shoppers may be offered additional pay during hours when the need for shoppers is high. Shoppers will be able to see peak times in advance of selecting their shift. Please note, Peak Boosts will only be available in select times and places.

These changes have been designed to keep average earnings the same as under the prior system, while paying more consistently for time and effort across different kinds of batches.

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