Instacart is expanding its Instacart Pickup click-and-collect service nationwide, enabling shoppers to order groceries through the service online and pick them up in select retail stores. The online grocery service will work with existing and new retail partners to add Instacart Pickup at participating partner stores across the U.S. over the coming months and throughout 2019.
The service is designed to offer customers more flexibility by letting them choose a time to drive by and grab their groceries rather than wait at home for a delivery. Pickup service is free for Instacart Express members, but non-members pay a cost determined by location, time of day and which grocer is selected.
Instacart already partners with some of the biggest grocery retailers in North America for same-day delivery, including Kroger, Albertsons, Sam’s Club, Walmart Canada and Loblaw, so it’s likely that these destinations are already targets for the click-and-collect service.
To access the Pickup service, customers can use the Instacart web site or mobile app to select their city and store. After they add groceries to their cart, shoppers choose either a delivery window or a pickup window before they check out. Upon receiving an in-app notification when their groceries are ready, shoppers must send an in-app notification to their Instacart personal shopper to let them know they’re on the way.
The Pickup expansion comes less than a month after Instacart secured a $600 million financing round, bringing its total funding to $1.6 billion to date. The company is investing in brainpower with the recent appointments of Varouj Chitilian as it first VP of Engineering and Dave Sobota as its first VP of Corporate Development — both of whom were poached from Google.
Additionally, Instacart “acqui-hired” the entire six-member MightySignal team into its engineering department last week. While MightySignal built out a mobile apps index designed to provide business intelligence to B2B sales teams, the team will build customer engagement-focused product features for Instacart.
Overall, the expansion of both the Pickup service and the engineering team signifies that Instacart is serious about its positioning in the growing e-Grocery market. Instacart says that it now works with 15,000 stores and 70,000 personal shoppers in 4,000 cities, and that it is accessible by 70% of U.S. customers and 50% of Canadian shoppers.
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