Author Topic: Thinking about becoming a personal shopper….  (Read 2002 times)

blueinthecity

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Thinking about becoming a personal shopper….
« on: June 23, 2015, 11:49:09 AM »
As the title suggests, I am thinking about becoming a personal shopper - specifically focused on grocery shopping.  I hear people talk about how there might be a market for providing shopping or errand running to certain groups, such as the elderly.  However, I think the best target market might be the single parent or dual-income with kids families, who have some disposable income but can afford to outsource time-consuming errands.  I don't just want to run around for $10/hour doing errands though - I'm imagining a more targeted business where I have a list of stores I will shop at on a schedule, and I can get to know what kind of consumer a regular client is in particular.  So I'm thinking, survey clients to learn about shopping habits - would they spend money to purchase pre-chopped vegetables at a higher expense?  What are the go-to meals that the family needs to keep stocked weekly?  Do they like to try new things and want suggestions or is a standard list to keep stocked what they need?  Maybe I could even bring the groceries in and stock the pantry, etc. for the clients while they are at work.  Through such a service, the full-time working parent(s) can save some time and energy avoiding the typical weekly errands - Target, Whole Foods, etc.  I know there are delivery services already but you still have to spend the time shopping online and put everything away, etc. 

What do those in/near major metropolitan areas (read:  HCOL) think about this idea?  My idea is to target families who already have help but not this type of help, so perhaps a family with a nanny who does not do the shopping/cooking.  And how to monetize this service?  My thought is something like $20 per store, plus 15% of the total?  I'd be thrilled if I could make somewhere around $30/hour for my time.

Feel free to share your ideas or offer suggestions about mine - I think it could be a decent side gig if I found a few clients and then let it develop through word of mouth.  I should also mention, I happen to love grocery shopping and cooking, so this is an idea based on thinking of things I enjoy and then trying to find a way to create value out of that. 

Thanks in advance for any feedback!

Cromacster

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Re: Thinking about becoming a personal shopper….
« Reply #1 on: June 23, 2015, 11:53:02 AM »
Depending on if it's available in your city see: Instacart

MsPeacock

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Re: Thinking about becoming a personal shopper….
« Reply #2 on: June 23, 2015, 12:05:33 PM »
I think that something that incorporated meal planning w/ the shopping and putting away would be great. Big cities have grocery delivery, and Google Express is (maybe) coming to many areas - and they will shop and deliver from a bunch of stores for $10 a month and $15 minimum purchase (stores like Target, Whole Foods, Kohl's, Costco, liquor stores, etc.). I already often order my groceries for delivery already  - so what would set this apart for me would be the meal planning and putting groceries away.

I would suggest setting a flat fee rather than 15% over the cost of the purchases. For me, personally, I would be more likely to use a service when I know exactly what it is going to cost me upfront.

historienne

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Re: Thinking about becoming a personal shopper….
« Reply #3 on: June 23, 2015, 12:26:35 PM »
You might market yourself as a local version of Blue Apron - offer a number of meals each week, customers can choose the meals they want, you drop off ingredients and a recipe for those meals.   As an add-on, you could also pick up whatever else they need from the store.  And you'd be able to offer fresher ingredients, with fewer food-miles, than Blue Apron.

Agree that, just doing straight grocery delivery, you will have a hard time competing with Instacart and similar services (Rosie is another one).  They have shiny aps, and definitely don't pay their workers $30/hr.  $20/store + 15% is WAY above market for basic grocery delivery, at least where I live. 

Lis

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Re: Thinking about becoming a personal shopper….
« Reply #4 on: June 23, 2015, 03:20:04 PM »
Bumping to follow. I considered doing this, but couldn't figure out exactly how. I live in a HCOL with lots of ritzy families and have three different supermarkets in my immediate area. This seems like a great idea and I'd love to hear more ideas!