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Last mile delivery overview

For last mile delivery orders, a retailer employee does the shopping without using the Instacart Shopper app. When the order is ready, an Instacart driver picks up and delivers the order. Instacart Connect offers a set of lastmile endpoints for this use case.

tip

If you want the shopper to use the Instacart Shopper app, you should use the endpoints for delivery instead. For more information, see Delivery user journey or Implement delivery.

You can create a last mile delivery orders by using a set of integrated calls or a single call.

Integrated Last mile delivery#

Integrated last mile delivery is the preferred option. Use it to integrate closely with the Instacart service option system. The endpoints for last mile delivery orders are similar to the endpoints used for delivery orders or pickup orders.

There are a few key benefits to the integrated approach. The order flow is broken down into multiple distinct calls, which makes it easier to display progress and show error messaging to your users at the correct part of your workflow. The calls are further broken down into multiple discrete operations, which means that there are latency benefits because each operation takes less time to execute on the Instacart services.

For more information, see Last mile delivery user journey or Implement last mile delivery.

Single call Last mile delivery#

Single call last mile delivery combines multiple operations into a single request, which is similar to APIs offered by other third party logistics (3PL) providers. With a single call, Instacart Connect attempts to find an available service service option within a specified time range and then create the order.

The main benefits of this approach are simplicity and ease of integration. The tradeoff is that the calls take longer to complete because more work needs to be done in a single call. If you want to set up last mile delivery quickly and the potential latency is not a major concern, you might want to use this approach.