Nailing the handoff

Exploring Certified Delivery’s checkout and delivery flows

While Instacart’s bread and butter has always been and will continue to be grocery, many grocers and specialty retailers have a wide variety of items in their catalogs that extend beyond the pantry and produce aisles. Every day, customers can order same-day delivery of alcohol, prescriptions, home goods, makeup, and even electronics on Instacart. In fact, we’ve seen increased interest in electronics on the platform when compared to last year as people across North America continued to settle into remote work and distance learning routines.

Today, we welcomed Best Buy to the Instacart marketplace, and as part of that launch, we’ve introduced Certified Delivery to our Customer and Shopper apps. The new feature makes it easier for customers to place same-day orders for high-value items like small electronics, earbuds, and smart home devices. With Certified Delivery, customers confirm that they will be home to accept and sign for high-value items right from their phone.

In developing Certified Delivery, we had to be thoughtful about the user journey for both our customers and our shoppers. It’s a balancing act — how do you add complexity during ordering and checkout while reducing friction down the line?

Let’s take a look at the flows.

Adding Complexity

If a customer checks out with a set of noise-canceling headphones in their order that exceeds a pricing threshold, they’ll see a set of new prompts.

  • We’ll alert them that the headphones require Certified Delivery, and ask them to pre-confirm that they will be home to sign for the order in person.
  • They’ll also get signature instructions as they check out.
  • Upon delivery, the customer will receive a prompt asking them to sign for their item.

Similarly, in the shopper app, we’ve added a set of prompts to alert the shopper about the Certified Delivery requirement and offer up step-by-step instructions.

  • The shopper will be alerted that the order requires certified delivery.
  • They’ll see a prompt to ask the customer to sign for the delivery.
  • An update will appear when the customer has completed the signature.
  • If a customer is not able to sign for the item on their phone, the shopper will be prompted to scan the customer’s ID in lieu of a signature.

Reducing Friction

By building these flows into the product we aimed to reduce delays and confusion at the moment of handoff. In pilot testing, we saw a notable reduction in contacts to our Care team. With this new set of prompts, the customer (armed with their signature link or an ID) gets the prep they need to accept the order. With the customer prepared, shoppers don’t need to wait as long at the doorstep for delivery confirmation, and they receive step-by-step instructions in their own app to confirm delivery and complete the order.

Want to build features like these? Our Product, Engineering, and Design teams are hiring! Check out our current openings.


Nailing the handoff was originally published in tech-at-instacart on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

Source: Instacart

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