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Customer communications

Customer communications are handled through SMS messages. Messages include order status notifications and shopper-customer chat. When a customer opts in to receiving SMS messages, messages are sent to the phone number provided by the customer.


You can also choose to offer an Order Status page where customers can track their orders and communicate with shoppers. For more information, see the Post-checkout Guide.

Retailers have the following options for customer communications:

  • Instacart sends SMS messages
  • Retailer sends SMS messages

Instacart sends messages

Instacart sends status notifications to your customers. In a delivery or pickup workflow, your customers can also chat with their shopper after their shopper starts shopping. This model is preferred for delivery and pickup workflows where the Instacart Shopper app is used by the shopper.

You can customize the text that appears in the default status notifications. For more information, contact your Instacart representative.

Your ecommerce site must enable customers to select a preference to opt in to or opt out of receiving SMS messages. When you create an order, you send the SMS messages preference along with the order. Occasionally, customers miss selecting the opt-in option and want to opt in after the order is created. To help customers enable messages after the order is created, contact Instacart Customer Experience.

If your site does not send the preference in the create order request, the following defaults are assumed:

  • For delivery and pickup workflows, the default is to turn off SMS messages.
  • For last mile delivery workflows, the default is to turn on SMS messages. Customers give implied consent to receiving communications by requesting last mile delivery and by accepting the Instacart policies. For more information, see Privacy policy and terms of service.

Retailer sends messages

If you want your site to own all customer communications, you can turn off the Instacart messages. Your site can use the event callbacks that it receives from Instacart Connect to trigger sending your own status messages to your customers. In this model, shoppers cannot communicate with customers about their order. This model is suitable for partner pick and last mile delivery workflows.

Marketing messages

Instacart Connect does not send marketing messages to your customers.