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The Trusted Identity Blog

Instacart Case Study: Breathtaking Growth Requires Smart Onboarding

Expectations have been raised.

Thanks to Amazon, Uber, and Google, your consumers expect a better onboarding experience online. They expect it to be simple, fast, and secure. They have options and will simply switch to alternative service if you make the process too onerous.

Given the shift in global demographics, your primary customer groups are increasingly Millennials and Generation Z’ers who tend to quickly switch products and services. And this is especially true when it comes to the online identity verification process.

So, if you’re Instacart, a San Francisco-based same-day grocery-delivery service, you’d better have a great online experience — not only for your customers — but for the shoppers who deliver the groceries to their customers.

Despite its hyper growth, Instacart isn’t without its share of challenges, like finding and holding onto shift workers. Instacart’s CEO, Apoorva Mehta, said that acquiring shoppers had become a challenge in keeping pace with the company’s growth.

Instacart is aggressively onboarding shoppers, who receive orders through an app on their smartphone and then shop and deliver groceries to the customer’s door. To recruit more shoppers, Instacart needed to make some adjustments to improve efficiency, including a “touchless onboarding” process that would allow prospective shoppers to apply, verify their identity, and start shopping for Instacart in a matter of hours.

After exploring a number of online verification solutions, Instacart called upon Jumio to help automate their new shopper verification process. With Jumio Netverify, new Instacart shoppers go through a self-guided identity verification process as part of the onboarding process. They are asked to take a picture of their driver’s license or other government-issued ID, with their smartphone and then take a selfie. Netverify confirms the authenticity of the ID and makes sure it hasn’t been doctored. This verification is achieved by using a proprietary mix of artificial intelligence, computer vision and human review.

Instacart utilizes this new online process for onboarding all of their shoppers in the US and Canada. This new process has dramatically reduced the time it takes to onboard new shoppers from weeks to days, while also reducing operational costs.

According to Jonathan Hillis, Product Manager, Availability, “Jumio helped us shave days off the identity verification process, streamlining our onboarding for shoppers in over 150 markets.”

This type of ID verification is supplemented with Identity verification which verifies that the new shopper is live and present and is, in fact, the individual featured in the ID. Identity verification uses biometric facial recognition, liveness detection and verification experts to make sure the shopper featured in the selfie is the same person featured on the driver’s license. This guards against use of legitimate IDs that may have been stolen or otherwise are being presented without the owner’s permission.

I know there are thousands of companies from sharing economy startups to established banks who are still deploying their own in-house teams to verify the IDs and identities of their online users.

But, in today’s world where customers are forever lost because of clunky, time-consuming verification processes, it just makes business sense to farm this out to subject matter experts — whether it’s Jumio or one of our competitors. Modern online identity verification solutions can automate this process and dramatically improve the user experience and optimize your conversion rates for new account onboarding.

Read the entire Instacart case study here.

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