Either you love grocery shopping or you hate it. If you’re like the vast majority of folks, at some point, you’ve probably wished upon a grocery store fairy to magically do your shopping for you. Well, my aisle-averse friends and my cart-weary shoppers, the grocery gods have smiled upon you! There now exists in our fair city a team of smiling shoppers, clad in green t-shirts, eager to find the freshest carton of milk and the greenest head of lettuce—groceries chosen to meet your exact specifications and delivered speedily, safely and soundly to your door. Shipt is their name and shopping’s their game.
Shipt, a grocery-shopping app, now services the StyleBlueprint cities of Birmingham, Nashville and (starting just this week!) Atlanta as well Dallas, Tampa, South Florida, and Orlando. It originated in Birmingham as a same-day delivery company that delivered customers’ purchases from stores like Target, Best Buy and Apple. But, because of repeated requests for grocery delivery, this innovative company began developing an app in 2015 to make the grocery-shopping process as simple and fast as possible. Now Shipt is strictly focused on perfecting and growing their grocery-shopping service.
“As a company, we’re all about listening to our customers and responding to what they want and need,” says Shipt Founder and CEO Bill Smith. “When our customers asked for grocery delivery, we started turning the wheels to make that happen. The same principle continues to hold true as we expand to new cities. If we see people reaching out to us on social media to launch Shipt in a new city, we keep it on our radar as we grow.” And Shipt is growing rapidly, currently delivering in seven cities.
Here’s how it works. You choose your groceries on the Shipt app, where you can type in specific instructions like “ripe avocados, please!” Then, you complete your order by paying and choosing the time of delivery, which can be as early as one hour from when the order is placed, depending on availability. A thoroughly background-checked shopper—let’s call her Suzy Q—is assigned your shopping list. Suzy Q is trained to check for good eggs, fresh veggies and sell-by dates on milk cartons. Good ‘ole Suze will text you if there are no ripe avocados, to make sure she either gets the unripe ones or strikes that item from the list, per your specifications. She purchases the groceries, packs them in her company-inspected and -approved vehicle and heads to your place! This unlimited grocery delivery service is by membership, which comes at an annual fee of $99 or a monthly fee of $14.
“I get emails from customers who say, ‘Thanks to Shipt, I was able to spend the evening with my kids instead of at the grocery store,’” says Bill. “We hear stories every day of individuals who are not easily able to go to the grocery store. Whether it’s a story from a new mom or an individual with a health condition, it is incredible to think that this company that started as a simple idea is changing and simplifying lives.”
The forward-thinking employment model benefits customers and shoppers alike, allowing shoppers to set their available hours on the app. Many of the Shipt shoppers are stay-at-home moms, graduate students, aspiring artists or even a preacher between congregations. “Our shoppers have the independence and flexibility to set their own shopping schedule that complements their daily life,” says Bill. “Thankfully, our employment model ensures that they can continue to fulfill their day-to-day responsibilities or grow in their personal goals while grocery shopping for others.”
Birmingham is proud to play host to this technologically innovative company, which is based in the picturesque cobblestoned historic Morris Avenue right in the heart of downtown. “I was born and raised in Birmingham, and I am proud to be a business owner in this thriving city,” says Bill. Their first city outside of Birmingham was Nashville. “In my opinion, Nashville has the same Southern hospitality and spirit as Birmingham. It’s a great city with a lot of busy people, so we thought that it made good sense to launch grocery delivery there,” says Bill. “Thankfully, Nashville has embraced the concept of Shipt with open arms.”
Shipt is not only invested in improving its technology and services, but it is also committed to the communities in which its employees live and work, partnering and getting involved in projects with the A.G. Gaston Boys and Girls Club After-School Program and the Growing Kings organization in Birmingham, the Miami Children’s Museum in Miami, the Second Harvest Food Bank in Nashville and Girls, Inc. in Dallas, among others.
This is better than the grocery-shopping fairies we once wished for as we schlepped the grocery bags to the car, buckled up and raced home to get dinner ready. This is added time we can spend with our families, much-needed alone time or simply space to breathe during our busy days; it’s flexible jobs for people in our community and it’s a company that wants to give back to the good people in our cities. But, at this point, we’re guessing we had you at “Shipt Makes Grocery Shopping a Thing of the Past.”
These are our StyleBlueprint favorite ways to use the grocery-shopping app, Shipt:
- Arriving home from a vacation or work trip? Pull up the app and place your order. Remember to have the delivery time be when you are at home.
- When you are sick or your loved ones are sick
- Shop for parents who can’t get to the grocery store anymore? Spend that shopping time at home with them and simply meet the Shipt driver to accept the groceries.
- Crazy busy day? No problem. Pull over. Pull up Shipt. Place your order. Fresh groceries are on the way!
- We love that the first app category is sale items. One SB staffer ordered 12 gluten-free pizzas because they were 50% off!
- Having a dinner party and you realized you forgot a few items but you really don’t have time to head back out? Just say Shipt!
To check “groceries” off your to-do list without crossing the grocery store threshold, sign up to become a Shipt member, download the free app on your iPhone or Android and place your first grocery delivery order!