Another review - that's like two in just a few days. I can't help myself; when something works well, I want to tell people about it. Read on!
Have we talked about how much I hate grocery shopping? I think I've mentioned in the podcast a few times that I even get road rage INSIDE the grocery store with my cart. I mean, I dread going to the grocery for lots of reasons, but the human interaction factor is really the biggest problem. I also get distracted easily and spend too much money and hate the way it smells and don't want to make small talk and resent the time it takes and... Well, you get the picture.
Given all of my anti-grocery shopping sentiment, it's probably no surprise to you that I FINALLY tried Kroger's new ClickList service. (Okay, maybe it's not new to anyone but me; it's definitely a new thing in my book.) Anywho, I tried it a week ago this past Saturday, and I'm definitely SOLD on this option. I also just placed my order for this week yesterday and plan to pick it up on my way home from the gym today. I'm loving this grocery service option!
The process is actually pretty simple. To create your shopping list and place your order, follow these steps. Seriously, all of these steps took me like 15 or 20 minutes on my phone. I made my list for this week while wearing my pjs and enjoying an adult beverage. ;)
Step 1: Login to your Kroger app on your phone (I guess it prob works on a desktop too)
Step 2: Choose the ClickList option and your store (not all stores in my area offer this yet)
Step 3: Create your grocery list using the info already stored in your Kroger plus account for what you've recently bought
Step 4: Check the sale items for that week and add to your shopping list as desired
Step 5: Search for any non-recently purchased items that you need and add to your shopping list as desired
Step 6: Review your number of items and leave any special instructions (ie: only green bananas please)
Step 7: Enter your payment information (which can then be stored for future reference if you wish)
Step 8: Choose a day and time for pickup (these are listed in one hour increments and are available roughly 4-5 hours after you place your order)
When it's your day/time to pick up your order, follow these steps:
Step 1: Drive to your Kroger location and park in the designated parking area (evidenced in the photo below)
Step 2: Call the number at your parking spot and tell them your name and the number of your spot
Step 3: Wait for the worker to bring out your items
Step 4: The worker will tell you if any items weren't available or if there were any issues/questions with your order
Step 5: Wait for the worker to load your groceries in your trunk
Step 6: Drive home secure in the knowledge that you only have to touch your groceries the one time you bring them into your home and put them away. Cue an angelic choir singing right about now!
Here are some things to know about the ordering and pickup process:
-You can insist on a certain brand/size if you want to do so, but you're more likely to get what you want if you are willing to accept brand/size substitutions. There's a box for each item that indicates whether you'll accept a substitution or not. For me, no subs on cokes or ketchup, but pretty much everything else is fair game.
-Using the items you bought recently as a starting point works really well for me because I have a tendency to make the same kinds of things every couple of weeks. Why reinvent the wheel each week if you don't have to?
-For fresh items like produce or meat, you can be very specific in the instructions. I could request a 4 pound pot roast, for example. Or three soft pears if I wanted.
-Digital coupons and deals are automatically credited to your order total using the Kroger app. I'm not sure how it would work if you use print coupons. Since I don't, that's not really important to me.
-There's supposed to be a $4.95 service fee to use ClickList, but my first order was free. I figured that's to lure you into the fabulousness. I fully expected to pay for this second order, but it was marked out and listed as free as well. Let me tell you, less tress and half the time to take care of grocery shopping is definitely worth the service fee when they make me start paying it. I wonder if you'll ever be able to pay with your Kroger fuel points...hmm...
-Because of the wait time between ordering and picking up and because of the potential fee involved, this is not a good service to pick up just a few items. For me, this is only worth it for my weekly shopping. If I need just a tiny something, I'll run in to a local Walgreen's or to Meijer's for it.
-My first time using ClickList, I had to wait about seven minutes for my order to be brought to my car because there were two other cars ahead of me. I didn't mind it because I just waited in my comfy, warm car and played on Instagram.
-There is a little pressure to keep my trunk clean because other people are putting stuff in it, but I see that as a good thing. It's one more reason for me to keep my car neat. :)
-Some cities/stores offer delivery, but my local stores do not.
-Not all stores in smaller cities offer this service; my "corner" Kroger (like two minutes from my house) doesn't have it, but one of the ones "across town" does offer it. (I say that with the full knowledge that "across town" is literally like an eight minute drive at most, even at peak times, in my city.)
-Door to door, this process took me 25 minutes on a Saturday in the late afternoon - about 6 minutes of driving each way + 7 minutes of wait time + 6 minutes to load my car and check my order with the service guy. I call that a pretty good deal considering it would have been at least an hour or maybe an hour and a half if I had gone in to do the shopping. I'll be interested to see what my timing looks like today on a Monday as I head home from work and the gym at prime "rush hour" traffic for my town.
A few other tidbits:
-One of my friends told me that WalMart offers a similar service for free. I'm not familiar with it and wouldn't pursue that because I choose not to support WalMart's business practices, but you should check it out if you shop there regularly and want to try a similar service.
-I know that Amazon pantry works in a similar way and can be great to have grocery items delivered if you're a Prime member like I am. What has stopped me from ordering this way there is getting cold items? How can they be left safely on your doorstep, or are they even offered in that service? If I still had a family at home, I might really be interested in the Amazon service for items I'd buy in bulk like toilet paper or laundry detergent. I'm still open to trying Amazon's service for sure.
This is an amazing time to be alive! What I would have given when my daughter was small to have a service like this for my grocery shopping. Can you imagine how much stress we could have all avoided? And what about needing groceries when you're sick and don't feel like going inside? Or needing groceries when it's 112 degrees or 12 degrees or raining or snowing or whatever? Plus, I really like the idea that this service is likely creating the need for a few more jobs in our town for people who might not be trained in other areas. I think this ClickList service is a win-win for lots of reasons. If you decide to give this service or one like it a try, I'd love to hear about your experiences. Peace out, my friends; I've got some groceries to pick up on my way home tonight!
**Disclaimer: this review is not sponsored in any way. Kroger only knows me as the lady with the shopping cart aisle rage who buys way too many cokes and peanut butter based products. :) :) :) Seriously, I'm just a random customer of Kroger who isn't being compensated for my review.