I’ve previously tried to shop online at Pick n Pay and for some reason all their delivery slots for that week were booked and unavailable. After that, I haven’t tried it out again. Until this week. It was announced that their new online shopping website was launched to work alongside their app. And when I saw “free delivery until 31 October”, I raced online with my shopping list clutched tightly in my hand (normal delivery fee is R80… and in my books, that’s pricey).
Getting Started: Grocery Shopping Online
I don’t recall entirely how the online shopping interface looked when I first created a profile. So it felt like I was shopping online with Pick n Pay for the first time. While there are many functionalities that worked just about fine, there are some things that could be refined a little.
I’m going to start off with what I liked about my experience:
- I can leave a message/note for the picker who will be picking my groceries. I loved this because the fresh milk doesn’t display expiry dates, and naturally I choose the milk with the latest/furthest expiry. So I left a note about picking according to that (and she did!).
- I only get debited once the groceries have been picked and packed (which takes place the evening/night before your chosen delivery date).
- I could view all the items on sale/promotion at once, and shop from there as well.
- When viewing my trolley, at the end of my shopping, the items are sorted according to Fresh foods, Household, etc. I love anything that is categorised so I was impressed with this layout. It makes finding items easier on your list.
- I have an option to purchase bags or not. It’s excellent news for those of us who want to cut out on using plastic so much.
- All items came sealed in a box that was opened by the delivery men. You have to sign for the groceries and confirm that they came sealed in a box.
- The invoice I received upon delivery listed exactly which items were packed in which box. The fresh foods were in a separate coloured box from the rest. Organisation was on-point.
Here’s where I think there’s room for improvement:
- After logging in and browsing from my account, many links on the footer menu (at the bottom of the page) when clicked on took me back to the login screen where I was required to login all over again.
- Items only show as ‘Out of stock’ after selecting to add it to the basket. This would be great if it could show up before giving the option to add it.
- When viewing my trolley, all my items were selected (by default) as “Find a suitable alternative” should the item not be available. I felt that this option should not have been default. Thankfully you can mass select them to not be replaced with an alternative.
- Some products did not have all the necessary details. For example, when purchasing black bin bags, I want to know how thick they are and what size they are. These details are found on the product itself but the image online isn’t a close-up. So when buying the bin bags, I kind of took a guess (it was a good guess – the correct pack arrived).
- Actually, most products didn’t have precise descriptions. If you’re someone who already knows the products you use inside out, shopping online would be a breeze. If you’re looking to try something new, don’t go with this option. Visit the store rather.
- The order confirmation email doesn’t state that your debit goes off only once the groceries have been packed. For a long while I thought something was wrong with my credit card so I called the helpline where they told me that the debit will go off the night before the delivery date is set.
- My invoice (online) showed that I paid for delivery, and also did not show that I used my Smart Shopper points to get a discount. This made me wonder if in fact there was an error – that I was actually paying for delivery and that my points did not work.
- I chose a delivery time of between 11 am and 12 pm as I intended to bake and be done by 1 pm. The groceries arrived after my chosen time slot. Unfortunately there isn’t any communication between the delivery guys and the customer so it’s a waiting game if they’re late.
Shopping for groceries online is a cool perk for those of us whose days are just so busy. In total, I managed to do my weekly shopping and pay for it in under 40 minutes – which is excellent, considering I didn’t need to physically drive anywhere, find parking, wipe trolley handles with hand sanitiser wipes, browse through isles, find a queue that’s the shortest and moving the quickest, wait in line to pay, or carry bags to the car.
To Sum Up
Pick n Pay’s online grocery shopping is nearly there to being perfect.
How would I rate my experience?
Would I shop again with PnP?
Yes, but it won’t be my first option. This experience made me realise that I may actually prefer to view and inspect my groceries before buying them.