Click & Collect Success
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To slow the spread of coronavirus, Americans are being urged to stay at home except to provide essential services or do essential things like grocery shopping. Ordering food online for curbside pickup is among the CDC’s recommendations to limit potential exposure to others and the virus. The demand for curbside pickup at supermarkets has surged to a level higher than ever before. Slots for this service, also referred to as click and collect, are difficult to secure. Many shoppers are also navigating this shopping experience for the first time. I want to share some tips here for click and select shopping success. I can’t help you snag a coveted slot (try ordering early?), but once you do, I hope you feel more prepared.

Plan Now

Whether you are shopping online or in person, you should always plan your meals and snacks first. The CDC recommends stocking enough food to last you two weeks in case you need to self-quarantine. By doing some extra meal planning now, you can avoid rushing to select items before your time expires online and the hold on your cherished slot is gone. Plan for at least two meals a day and be sure to use non-perishable and easy to prepare ingredients. Check to see what foods you already have and add the other items you need to your cart. Look for Guiding Stars-earning options to simply select a nutritious choice.

Check out our Pantry Friendly Recipes for Staying Home for meal planning inspiration.

Pay Close Attention

If you have shopped online before I guarantee you have ordered the wrong size or quantity of something. I usually do this when I add something to my cart quickly and I don’t double check that it’s the same item or similar enough to what I’m running low on. Since we’re spending most of our time at home, hopefully we can take advantage of our proximity to our pantry as we shop. Read the description online closely and confirm that it matches what you are replacing. Usually you can click on the picture to see a larger image of an item and read the details on the package. If you shop with a loyalty account, you may be able to look at your recent purchases online to add those items to your cart as well. The more Guiding Star-earning items in your cart, the more nutritious your overall order will be.

Allow Substitutions

We have all seen images of empty supermarket shelves in the news and on social media. The coronavirus pandemic has brought on unprecedented stockpiling. Retailers insist that their supply chain remains strong and there is plenty of food. In just a few weeks, you can already see a noticeable improvement in the number of out-of-stock items, but it will take a while for grocery stores to be stocked like normal. There may be limits on the quantity you can purchase for certain high demand items like toilet paper or disinfectant. Allow substitutions on your order in case one of your items is out of stock. You can usually leave comments on your order. I suggest asking for your store to consider Guiding Stars ratings as they select a product substitution. That way you know you are getting a nutritious item.

Eat Better on a Budget

Unfortunately, millions of Americans have been impacted financially by the coronavirus pandemic. Now more than ever, shoppers are looking to get the best price. Check the weekly flyer online. It likely has a click and add to your cart feature. Just be sure that the flyer you select from matches the date you are picking up your groceries. Look for specials or sales on meat and seafood. Those are often the most expensive items on your list. Grocery shopping online can also help you avoid impulse buying in store. Stick to your list and avoid spending money on things you don’t need.

In case you are wondering if Guiding Stars-earning items cost more: Guiding Stars is a completely independent assessment of the nutritional quality of foods and beverages. Guiding Stars is not influenced by price, brand or manufacturer and the star rating does not influence pricing at retail clients.

Click and collect your groceries at our grocery store client closest to you.