We’re going to explain how personal shopper apps work, some generalities about the job, and the best personal shopper apps currently out there.
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What are Personal Shopper Apps?
By now, you’ve likely heard of personal shopper apps like DoorDash or Shipt to order groceries, but what if you could be the grocery shopper and get paid for it?
That’s what we’ll focus on here, how you can use shopping apps to make a decent side income, like an extra $500 to $2,000 per month. Like most other side gig apps, you work when you want. You don’t have to have a set schedule, and the only boss you have is yourself.
Of course, like most services today, your tips and ability to secure consistent work will largely depend on the reviews customers leave you, so it’s in your best interest to provide fantastic service.
How Do Personal Shopper Apps work?
No two personal shopper apps work the same. However, there are some generalities, and thus this next section will give you an overview of what to expect from most services to choose the best shopper app for you.
Here’s what you can expect from personal shopper apps:
- The work happens in the app. Most grocery shopper apps work exclusively in the app. You mark yourself as available, and you start receiving the option to accept orders. Many apps allow you to see order details, including the total, so you can determine if it’s worth taking. Typically, you can accept or deny orders based on what you want to take.
- The app makes it easy to communicate with your customer. All communication between you and the customer is done through the app. You receive the customer’s list along with any allowed substitutions. You can also text the customer if you have questions before heading to the store or while shopping. This is a great way to get good customer service ratings too.
- You don’t need to pay for the order with your own money. Each app has different methods for paying, but the money never comes out of your pocket. Once you checkout, you deliver the groceries to the customer’s house and complete the order. The customer can also increase their tip if you provide stellar service.
- Some personal shopper apps don’t require a car. If you don’t want to deliver groceries or can’t because you don’t have a car, some services allow shoppers to shop inside the store for customers doing curbside pickup.
Best Personal Shopper Apps for 2024
There used to be only a couple of personal shopper apps when the craze first started, but today there are many. The following is a list of the best apps to consider if you want to be a personal shopper.
Learn more in Best Food Delivery Service to Work for in 2024.
1. DoorDash (Top Pick)
Our top pick for personal shopping is DoorDash!
Get paid $15 to $25/hour delivering for DoorDash.
DoorDash is one of the most popular food delivery services in the U.S., and it controls over 60% of the market share. Until recently, DoorDash was primarily for restaurant takeout, but DoorDash has expanded into grocery shopping and delivery.
To work for DoorDash, you must be 18 years old, have a smartphone, proof you can work in the United States, and 2-year driving history.
Learn more in our DoorDash Driver Review.
- DoorDash pays weekly and has an option for daily pay
- You can schedule your hours in advance or shop and deliver when you have spare time.
- Most shoppers earn $20+ an hour plus tips
- You must handle your tax obligations
- There can be a lot of competition to get orders in your area
Looking for another top-notch personal shopper app option?
Deliver same-day household essentials and groceries with Shipt.
Shipt is becoming increasingly popular too. Like others on this list, it’s an on-demand grocery delivery service, except they only hire full-service shoppers, so you will need a car or a way to get around quickly if you want to work for them.
You can work as much or as little as you want. Shipt is a little more restrictive about who they hire, though. They do a thorough background check, require you to have a vehicle that’s less than 15 years old, and you must be able to lift 25+ pounds.
Learn more in our Shipt Shopper Review.
- You can set your schedule and work as much as you want
- Shipt pays weekly
- Shipt shoppers earn $15 to 22+ per order
- You can’t see the order specifics before accepting, so you risk ending up with a problematic order
- You are required to shop on your own
Favor is for drivers that will deliver anything, not just groceries. Favor drivers are personal assistants who deliver things like alcohol, fast food, dry cleaning, groceries, or anything else customers want.
It’s easy to qualify as a Favor driver too. You must be 18 years old, have reliable transportation, and have a working smartphone.
- You set your schedule and can work as much as you want
- Favor pays you to refer friends to be “runners”
- Provides variety rather than only being a grocery shopper
- Only available in Texas
- You don’t know where the errands will take you since it’s more than a grocery store app
Burpy is a grocery store delivery service in Texas. It’s a relatively new company founded by mechanical engineering students at the University of Texas at Austin. Like most personal shopper apps, you can choose your hours, and they claim you make up to $25 per hour.
Burpy conducts a background check, and you must also go through an interview. Thus, Burpy is a bit more intense than what you’d experience with Instacart or Shipt.
- You can shop at a variety of stores, increasing your chances of higher earnings
- You earn hourly pay plus tips
- You set your hours
- You must go through a rigorous interview and onboarding process
- It’s only available in Texas
TaskRabbit is another personal shopper app that offers more than just grocery shopping services. You can provide services in over 50 categories, including personal shopper services.
TaskRabbit differs slightly from other grocery shopping apps like Instacart and Shipt. You set your rates and keep 100% of the earnings plus tips. However, Taskrabbit charges a 15% service fee, which they take from your earnings.
- You can earn money doing more than shopping
- You keep your earnings minus the Taskrabbit fee
- You’re in charge of what you do and when you work
- Taskrabbit takes a portion of every job
- There’s more competition
How Do You Get Personal Shopper Jobs?
It’s easy to get personal shopper jobs since they fall under freelance work rather than being hired by a company. However, some companies have stricter requirements, including a background check or even an interview.
Overall, if you have a decent car, no criminal history, and are at least 18 years old, you can get hired by most companies.
How Much Can You Make as a Personal Shopper?
The money you’ll make as a personal shopper will vary depending on the platform, the hours you work, and tips. Each of the personal shopper apps pays a different base pay, but to maximize your earnings, consider these tips:
- Work peak hours. Each company and area has different peak hours. Inquire about the peak hours in your area and try to work them. You may get a higher hourly wage, and you’ll get more business, which means you’ll earn more money.
- Work as much as you can. Of course, the more you work, the more you’ll earn. The more availability you have, the more orders you’ll be able to accept.
- Provide great customer service. Most personal shopper apps let you keep the tips earned. The better service you provide, the more you’ll make. Customers love it when you introduce yourself, keep in contact while you shop, and let them know when you’re headed to their home.
Pros and Cons of Personal Shopper Apps
Like all side gigs, personal shopper apps have their pros and cons. Here’s what to consider before becoming a personal shopper.
- You can work when you want
- Most personal shopper apps allow you to work as much as you want
- You are your boss
- It can be fun
- You are responsible for your taxes, including FICA
- Variable income
- It can put a lot of wear and tear on your car
- You are responsible for all expenses
The Final Word
Personal shopper apps can be a great way to make money on the side. It’s kind of fun spending someone else’s money shopping and knowing that you’re making a decent side income at the same time.
However, before you sign up for a personal grocery shopper app, make sure you meet the requirements, know the demand in your area, and understand the costs involved, including both personal expenses and your tax liability.