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Keeping Items Safe in Transit

As a Shipt Shopper, ensuring a customer’s order is safe during delivery is a fundamental skill that many don’t take the time to think or worry about. This is an underrated skill that I think every shopper should take the time to master.

In doing research for this lesson, I uncovered some common complaints that customers were having, then cross-referenced those against best practices that have been adopted by some of the most highly rated, highly experienced Shipt Shoppers.

I then sorted those into five categories:

  1. Keeping perishable items from going bad.
  2. Securely packaging items during transport.
  3. Being careful when handling fragile items.
  4. Efficiently loading and unloading orders.

Adhering to a standard set or best practices, Shipt Shoppers can drastically reduce the chance of issues that might lead to a customer complaint.

1. Temperature Control for Perishables

You will find that the transit of perishable items is one of the most important parts of shopping with Shipt.

While you might not think of this while going to the grocery store for personal trips, you’ll notice that the issue arises quite a bit more while shopping with Shipt.

Enter insulated delivery bags.

Insulated delivery bags are cheap to buy on Amazon, yet highly effective in keeping items like dairy, meat, and frozen goods from going bad in transit. They are specially designed to maintain the right temperature and keep the items fresh.

Additionally, take care to place perishable items in areas of your vehicle where external temperatures might not greatly affect them. Usually, this is in the shade, away from windows and direct sunlight.

2. Secure Packaging

Another best practice that is often overlooked is ensuring that the packaging of items you are transporting is secure.

Before you leave the store, ensure that seals and lids are tightly sealed on all items, especially liquids and items that may come loose. This helps to prevent spills and items going bad.

Next, choose to transport the items in sturdy bags that won’t break or tear. You can either purchase commercial-grade transport bags, or take additional steps like double-bagging heavy items (milk is one I ALWAYS double-bag) to help protect them.

Lastly, think about how you’re packing items. Customers will appreciate this more than you realize.

Taking time to separate household chemical and non-food items from food items helps to avoid contamination and keeps food items fresh.

3. Handling Fragile Items

Another consideration is to take care when handling fragile items.

As a customer, there is nothing more frustrating than paying for an item, patiently waiting for it to arrive at your doorstep, and then having to deal with the frustration of it not working properly when it arrives.

Not only does the item not work properly, but the customer has to then handle a refund and manage the process of returning it, and then navigating a replacement.

To avoid this issue entirely, place fragile items like eggs and bread in a position where they are least likely to be squashed or damaged, preferably on top of other items.

When transporting glass containers, ensure they are secured and cushioned to prevent breakage.

In short, just think about how to pack items “smartly”. If it were showing up at your house, how would you want it to be done?

4. Efficient Loading and Unloading

Lastly, to maximize your orders for efficiency when loading and unloading. This is especially important if you’re delivering to multiple addresses.

When loading, think about which order you’re dropping off, in what order. Organize the items in your vehicle in the order of delivery. This minimizes handling and movement, reducing the risk of damage.

When doing so, make sure to handle items gently during loading and unloading, paying special attention to perishable and fragile items.

What to Do If Something Goes Wrong

In the case that you follow the proper procedures, yet something still goes wrong, don’t worry. You’re not the first one facing the issue.

In the case of a vehicle breakdown, an accident, or some type of delay out of your control, the first thing to keep in mind is to prioritize the safety of the items.

Using emergency items (that you should have on hand) like extra insulated bags to protect perishables, will keep them from going bad.

Next, inform Shipt customer service of the delay. They will advise you on the next steps to take and what to communicate to the customer. Every situation is different, so what you’ll need to do may vary.

Next, inform the customer of the issue, but then reassure them with a well-communicated solution. There’s much less of a chance for friction if they customer knows you have your back, and how the situation will be resolved.

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