I have always wondered about honestbee but had never tried it since I live very near a great supermarket. (I’ve seen honestbee concierge folks darting about the supermarket loading items into their grocery basket though!) But precisely because I live within walking distance of the supermarket, we walk back with all our buys, which can be heavy and cumbersome, even with our own marketing trolley.
So when honestbee asked me whether I’d like to try them out, I thought why not? And it certainly helped that they were offering store credit in exchange for an honest review of my experience.
They have also just launched Family Market, under the Speciality Stores that they cover. Family Market aims to take care of all your family’s everyday needs with products ranging from food and snacks, health and beauty essentials, to baby care products and household goods.
When I scrolled through, their most popular product at that moment was Kao Merries diapers, probably due to its pretty good price and the fact that these bulky items can be delivered to one’s doorstep.
My kids are thankfully past the stage of diapers, so I ordered other necessities instead. In the spirit of an honest review, here are some things I liked and some things I didn’t like about my first Honestbee experience:
Things I liked
- Simple. It was a breeze to sign up and order – the online platform was easy to navigate, and it was easy to search to see whether certain items I wanted were available to add in cart. All my items were available and fulfilled, so there was no phone call to ask whether I wanted a substitute for anything. Hassle-free.
- Reasonable cost. The “today’s best price” concept works well to assure shoppers that they aren’t getting fleeced by hidden charges. It wasn’t hard to meet the $50 minimum for free delivery, and I thought the $3.99 I had to pay for the concierge fee for my order was also reasonable, given that it included drinks and bulky tissue paper.
- Speedy delivery. I made my order around 12:30pm, and booked a 3-4pm slot (no extra peak hour charge) for delivery. The goods turned up promptly at my doorstep at 3:05pm – it was certainly no mean feat for one person to carry all that to my doorstep, even from the lift!
- Real-time tracking. I appreciated being able to track the status of my order online – I realised after the order was complete that they even showed that my concierge shopper was preparing it at 1:30pm, and the items were picked up by the delivery person (aka my ‘delivery bee’) by 1:44pm. There was also an SMS notification that my delivery was about to arrive in 10 minutes. Talk about constant communication!
- Prompt invoice. The final receipt was sent to me via email almost in the same instant that the goods were delivered – which was helpful in confirming to me that every item I ordered was fulfilled. I also liked the fact that payment is only deducted after the final delivery of goods. This means that I wouldn’t be charged for items that were out of stock, and have to navigate refunds and the like.
Things I didn’t like
- Minimum order per store. Although I can order from two different supermarkets or speciality stores, there is a minimum order for each store before free delivery applies. I suppose that is reasonable, given the extra effort required, but it means that you should ensure you have enough items you wish to purchase from each store to make the entire order worthwhile. Otherwise, the $10 or $20 delivery fee per store is not quite worthwhile.
- Limited special offers. The auntie in me felt that it was quite ‘wasted’ that I couldn’t access certain special offers. For instance, buying two bottles of 830ml Meiji milk would be eligible for further discount at the actual store, but this discount was not applicable through the Honestbee site. I suppose something’s gotta give, in place of the convenience.
So all things considered, I’d say that the convenience and the time plus energy saved (especially if you are a very busy parent) makes honestbee a good option to have! There were no hitches to my order at all, and I was trying the service just like any normal person (the people handling my order had no idea that I’d be writing a review).
If it’s your first time trying honestbee out, you can even get $10 off a purchase of $50 by signing up via my referral link here.
If you have tried honestbee before, what did you like or not like about the service?