Founded in 2011, Postmates is becoming a go-to resource for drivers looking to expand their rideshare business. For those of you who aren’t familiar with Postmates, here’s a quick overview:
Summary: Postmates, an on-demand logistics company, connects businesses with couriers to expedite the process of delivering goods. When a customer requests an item using Postmates, the order is passed on to the business and delivered via the courier within an hour.
These lightning-fast deliveries are paying off big too. Postmates makes over 1 million deliveries every month, while also keeping production profitable for everyone involved.
The on-demand logistics company only charges 9 percent of the money earned from products being sold. This moderately low rate makes it possible for businesses to avoid raising their prices, which may happen otherwise if they hired an in-house driver.
Drivers also benefit from this system. When an order is placed, customers are required to pay a fee in exchange for having their items delivered within the same day. Postmates keep 20% of this delivery fee and drivers pocket the rest. With the average delivery fee totaling up to about $8, couriers earn about $6 for each delivery.
Postmates has expanded its services to over half of the United States and has a whole fleet of couriers delivering goods each day. With so much growth, now is the perfect time to start driving for Postmates.
Here are our 11 unique tricks to maximize your earnings as a Postmates courier.
1. Sign up for Multiple Delivery Services
As you may be aware, COVID-19 is sweeping the globe. As the nation is struggling to get through the pandemic, entire cities and states are going into lockdown, meaning people are stuck at home.
As a result, demand for delivery services like Postmates is SURGING through the roof. Our number one suggestion for increasing your income as a Postmates driver is to sign up for more services like Postmates.
We recently put together a list of our 5 favorite delivery services for drivers. I suggest giving that a read to get familiar with the most popular options.
After that, you can check even more open delivery positions on the Ridester Marketplace. You can browse open positions, bookmark your favorites, and leave reviews for the companies you’ve worked with.
2. Stack Up Postmates Deliveries
Customers are promised a one-hour delivery, and the majority of that time is spent preparing the order. Couriers are only responsible for the last leg of the journey.
Drivers can quickly rack up delivery fees by opting to deliver multiple orders at once. For example, grabbing and delivering ten orders within an hour results in a hefty $60 profit, plus any tips you receive.
Keep in mind that there is a catch to taking on multiple orders at once. Couriers are obligated to deliver each package in the order that they were picked up. Postmates enforces this rule to make sure that all items are delivered within an hour.
3. Find Your Turf
When ride requests are low and you are looking for Postmates orders to pick up, go to the order locations that are closest to you. This is similar logic to maximizing profits as a rideshare driver.
You don’t earn money for the time it takes to pick up an item. The delivery fee only covers the time frame between the pickup and drop off.
Couriers can maximize profits by minimizing the time spent going to each pickup location. To get an idea of how to achieve this, record the number of money you earn in various locations drive area. Repeat this process during different times of the day to find out when traffic or other obstacles are hindering your profit potential.
The data you collect will help you to identify where and when you are making the most money. Pick one or two of these locations that have a minimal pickup time and try to spend as much time there as possible during the profitable timeframes.
4. Go to Hot Spots
When the volume of orders increases significantly, Postmates lets drivers know where the action is via the Fleet app.
Couriers can see which locations are currently experiencing a hike in deliveries with the provided map. These areas, referred to as ‘hot spots’, are highlighted in various hues, ranging from orange to brick red.
Identifying which of these hot spots is the most profitable is easy. Postmates marks each area that is experiencing a high number of orders in dark red. As the hues get lighter further out on the map, the demand for deliveries decreases.
Couriers can take advantage of this by staying in the red areas. Doing so will increase the probability of getting multiple deliveries in one go, which will directly help you to earn more money.
5. Maximize Sign Up Bonuses
As the popularity of Postmates steadily increases, so too does the need for additional drivers. In order to keep up with the ever-growing demand, Postmates offers new couriers an extremely generous signup bonus.
To cash in on this amazing opportunity, check out our Postmates driver referral code article. We review how to get the maximum amount of money for signing up, as well as the rules and regulations that may prohibit you from becoming a new driver today.
6. Leverage Postmates Perks
The perks offered by Postmates go beyond the signup bonus. Drivers that consistently deliver for this on-demand logistics company are rewarded throughout their service.
Currently, drivers that exceed the weekly goal of ten deliveries earn the PerkSpot. This perk qualifies couriers for numerous discounts and exclusive offers from various companies.
A Postmate will be notified by the PerkSpot team via email the week after they achieved the ten-delivery goal. The email address that drivers will be contacted through is the same one they used to sign up.
Postmates Plus Unlimited should be the long-term goal for all couriers. To qualify for this perk, drivers only need to make 25 deliveries within a month.
Couriers that achieve this goal get a free Postmates Unlimited subscription applied to their account. There are a few stipulations on this, such as having a credit card associated with your account, so be sure to check out the details page.
7. Consider Auto Accept
Couriers that want to take some of the guesswork out of planning deliveries can turn auto accept on. Auto accept will automatically add new delivers to your route in the background. Auto accept accomplishes this by identifying where your drop off location is and queuing up an order from the nearest pickup area.
To get the most out of this feature, turn it on when there are a lot of hot spots in your area. This will help you line up as many of those in-demand deliveries as possible while reducing the downtime in between. While auto accept can be useful during these timeframes, resist the urge to use the feature outside of peak hours.
Outside of peak hours, the nearest delivery location the auto accept feature queues up for you may not actually be that close to you. This often happens when the demand for deliveries is running low. Drivers should consider leaving the passive feature off and implementing step two during their daily schedule instead.
8. Get the Right GPS
With Postmates, getting to a location on time is essential. Couriers that can consistently find and arrive at their destination on schedule earn about 5-10 times more per mile on average. To achieve these stats as a Postmate, take some time to ensure that you find the right GPS.
Couriers need an accurate GPS that relays up-to-date information to the driver as they are on route. This can help you avoid traffic jams and other issues that can slow down your speed. Basic solutions, such as Google Maps, are easily accessible and will function, however, there are better systems available.
Waze, for example, is engineered to provide the kind of precision couriers need while out on the road. The GPS is programmed to highlight the roads you can take to your destination and marks high traffic areas.
Waze has other useful features, such as using a pin to designate where potholes and speed traps are, which make navigating the streets a breeze. Plus, the layout and size of the direction arrows reduce the likelihood of missing a turn.
We find Waze to be the best option for couriers looking to procure a GPS, especially when compared to Google Maps. Feel free to decide for yourself which GPS is the best by checking out our Google Maps vs. Waze comparison.
9. Give Customers the Receipt
Maximizing the likelihood of a Postmates customer tipping is a great way to increase your profits. One such way to accomplish this is to give customers the receipt from their purchase. According to Gigworker.com, the probability of earning a tip is significantly higher if the customer receives a receipt.
To further improve the odds of being tipped, try to make the handoff in person. Although this may decrease the number of deliveries you make in a day, adding a personal touch to the experience can make the tradeoff worth your time. Remember to be courteous and smile, even if you are in a rush.
Advise the customer to keep the receipt in order to quickly resolve any issues that may arise. Take the time to remind the customer to close out the order and rate the service. Use these basic customer service techniques to effortlessly increase the number of tips you receive.
10. Set Aside Money for Taxes
It’s easy to forget that taxes need to be paid on any income you earn, especially if you have worked at a job that deducted taxes automatically. Avoid being blindsided by taxes.
As a driver for Postmates, you are considered an independent contractor. Every Postmate is responsible for setting aside a portion of their income to pay for taxes. In order to properly prepare for this expense, we recommend that couriers set aside 30% of their income.
Filing taxes as an independent contractor can be tricky, especially if it is your first time. However, there are several tips you can implement to make the process of paying taxes a bit easier.
Be sure to get the most out of your tax return by exploring our taxation guide for independent contractors.
11. Navigate Towards Blitz Pricing
Postmates offers drivers a special bonus when the number of orders exceeds the number of available couriers.
Referred to as Blitz Pricing, the incentive is a monetary reward issued to drivers that deliver during peak hours. Any Postmate that would like to take advantage of this bonus should leave room in their schedule open around lunch and dinner.
Lunch is often ordered and ready for delivery by 10:30 AM. This ordering frenzy usually lasts until about 1:30 PM. Dinner, on the other hand, starts at about 5:30 PM and lasts until 8:30 PM. Other noteworthy peak hours occur during the weekend.
12. Minimize Driving
While waiting for orders, try to limit the amount of time you spend on the road. Doing so will help you to avoid wasting gas and spending money unnecessarily. To achieve this, be on the lookout for a few safe places to park and wait.
Try to identify areas that are well lit and visible by other people. These locations should be within your driving radius. Sticking to this area will help you eliminate downtime and reduce the amount of money lost while waiting.
Postmates is quickly growing into one of the most popular delivery methods for lunch, dinner, and other goods. Rideshare drivers that are seeking new ways to earn additional income when ride requests are low, can do so by picking up a few orders here and there.
Remember, your time is valuable. Maximize the amount of money you earn as a Postmate. Be sure to pick up multiple orders when they are available, utilize auto accept during peak hours, and maximize tipping potential by personally handing receipts to the customer.
Brett Helling is the owner of Ridester.com. He has been a rideshare driver since early 2012, having completed hundreds of trips for companies including Uber, Lyft, and Postmates. In 2014 he acquired Ridester.com to share his experiences with other drivers. His insights are regularly quoted by publications such as Forbes, Vice, CNBC, and more. He is currently working on a book about working in the Gig Economy, expanding his skill set beyond the rideshare niche. Read more about Brett here.