In the past, offering a delivery option meant getting one or more phone lines and using them to receive orders. Although telephones are still handy tools to have in your establishment, you need more advanced pieces of technology to provide better service and stand out from the competition.
Having an efficient online delivery system allows your restaurant to streamline various processes involved in this service. Order-taking will be faster and more efficient. Since this will be Internet and app-based, your normal operations won’t be hampered by the phone constantly ringing and staff rushing to answer it.
An Internet-powered delivery service allows you and your customers to keep track of orders from start to end of the food’s journey.
Getting More Customers to Use Your Online Delivery Service
Having the right online delivery system in your restaurant is an excellent start to providing standout service. However, you also have to step up your game and use your other resources to get more from your new dining provision and income stream.
This means improving and enhancing the other technologies you have to get more customers to use your delivery service.
Below are four ways you can do this:
1. Update your website
Having a website that catches the eye of customers and that’s easy-to-use is a must if you want to have a successful delivery service.
Here are some tips for making your website work for your new delivery service:
- Put an eye-catching “Order Online” button on your homepage.
- Add features on your homepage that make it easy for customers to order. These include search and sign-in or sign-up functionalities.
- Make your website more attention-grabbing by putting high-quality photos of your most popular menu items with their prices on your main page.
- Install an advanced search function to help customers find menu items faster.
- Offer options for payment, which should include online (by credit or debit card) or cash on delivery.
- Install an online secure payment system and other cybersecurity measures.
- Add chat support and social sharing buttons.
- Highlight promos, discounts, or freebies that customers can get when they order online.
When you have a user-friendly website that appeals to customers, you can expect your delivery service to have a good start.
2. Ensure your website is mobile-friendly
Making websites mobile-friendly and optimized is a business provision that has become a standard. Since more and more people are using smartphones and tablets and to go online and visit business sites, companies need to ensure their consumers have access to their primary platform regardless of what device they use.
If your restaurant website is not yet mobile-optimized, customers will have a hard time using it on their hand-held devices. They will have difficulty finding some features. They may also encounter lags in ordering, which can cause them to abandon their shopping carts.
Keep in mind that not everyone has access to or can use a desktop or laptop when ordering online, even if they are at home or in their office. To avoid turning off customers who use their smartphone or tablet to order, have an IT professional ensure your website is mobile-friendly.
3. Invest in a mobile app
Having a mobile-friendly website would be a great help for customers that use their hand-held devices for ordering online. However, you can give them a better user experience and offer more than the usual service and features by providing customers a mobile app.
If your restaurant does not have an app yet, have one created by an app builder. Make sure it highlights your online delivery service so that customers can do this easily when they open it.
Having a mobile app will significantly improve the speed and ease of ordering online from your restaurants. Repeat customers can save their details such as contact details, their preferred method of payment, and most ordered menu items, among others, thereby allowing them to place their orders within seconds.
As a restaurant owner, you will be able to make quick changes in your menu whenever you introduce a new item or increase prices. You can also integrate the app with your POS system to keep track of your drivers, eliminate order mix-ups, and access real-time data regarding delivery sales.
With consumers using Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and other social media sites for various reasons, it is important that your restaurant establishes a strong presence in these platforms.
Share images of your menu items, blog posts, and reviews of your customers on your social media accounts. Since you want people to try your online ordering service, add the link to your website where they can order on these posts.
Look for popular online ordering portals as well and advertise with them. By doing so, you will increase the visibility of your restaurant.
If you send monthly email newsletters, don’t forget to add an engaging call to action (CTA) and shortened link to your online ordering site so that recipients will be enticed to click and start ordering.
As an additional tip, make sure you or your staff replies to anyone that engages with you on your website, social media, and review sites. Your efforts for promoting your new service will all go to waste if online users feel that you don’t value them enough to answer their questions or address their complaints.
With these tips, you can ensure the success of your delivery service, get more customers, and have another reliable source of income.
Ahmad Alzaini is the co-founder and CEO of Foodics, a fast-growing foodtech startup. A businessman by nature, Alzaini is an app aficionado, developing businesses in Saudi Arabia within several industries. Today, Foodics has extended to new markets across the MENA region, processing over 1 billion transactions, and offering the latest technology in POS and restaurant management.