A Call for Food Delivery Transparency in Ordering, Managing, and Tracking
Authored by: Kyle Vorndran (Senior Product Marketing Manager)
Online food ordering could rise 20% to $365 billion by 2030. But unless you’re the CEO of Uber Eats, Grubhub, or DoorDash, you’re probably not going to see as much of that as you deserve.
You don’t have to like third-party ordering apps—they’re taking 30% of your order income, after all. But you ought to respect what they’ve crafted: a smooth, transparent ordering experience that customers enjoy.
If restaurants are going to compete with the giants of the food delivery ecosystem, they need to step up their first-party delivery game—to match, if not beat, the experience of third-party apps.
This article explains:
- Why customers hate ordering from your website
- Why transparency is the key to first-party orders that don’t stink
- Top tips for crafting an ordering platform that isn’t a pain to use
Let’s dive in.
Why Third-Party Apps Are Beating You On Delivery
Most first-party restaurant delivery services have internal discrepancies. They’re not a perfect experience—for customers or businesses—and next to third-party apps, they just don’t measure up.
The Customer Experience
The problem: There’s a lack of transparency about delivery time. The number jumps from 50 minutes to 15 minutes without so much as a blink. Not to mention, most first-party apps don’t have real-time information on the order progress or driver location.
The result: Customers feel uncomfortable during the delivery process. They have no real idea of when the food will arrive or where the driver is. They feel a sense of risk about the whole process and will be less inclined to repeat the experience. So next time they fancy a pizza, they check out Uber Eats or Grubhub.
The Restaurant Reality
The problem: That lack of real-time information on order processing and driver location isn’t good for restaurants either. They have no idea whether drivers are dawdling or stuck in traffic or what. And the data from the app doesn’t sync to their POS—which means extra work manually inputting numbers later.
The result: In-house delivery program management stresses out restaurateurs so they resort to third-party delivery platforms. The apps provide a simple, streamlined experience that customers enjoy—but they also take 30% of your profit on every order. And they put up a wall between restaurants and customer data.
Up next: Why transparency is the key to a successful food delivery program
How The Food Industry Relies On Transparency
Restaurant owners that want to break free from the grip of third-party apps and start an in-house delivery service need to make transparency their number one priority—but chances are your restaurant already relies on transparency for business.
But it’s not just about the actual delivery—transparency is required across the board in the restaurant industry.
- Customers. Your customers trust you to be open and honest about what’s in your food: everything from the ingredients, the nutritional information, and any allergy warnings. Their lives could literally depend on it.
- Restaurants. Restaurant owners need to serve food that’s fresh and delicious. Transparency means you can keep your drivers and other staff accountable. If at any time this transparency disappears (you’ve got no idea where your drivers are or if that food is fresh), you’re going to lose efficiency and profit margin.
A great restaurant and efficient food delivery program require transparency and trust between the customer and the restaurant. Nobody is going to that vegan restaurant down the street if word gets out that they used meat in their products.
Customers appreciate honesty—they’d rather know the order is going to be 10 minutes late than sit there nervously watching their phone. But keeping customers in the know isn’t easy. It requires developing a first-party order service that covers:
- Delivery time estimates
- Restaurant tracking of drivers and clear order delegation
- Real-time driver tracking for customers
The good news is, apps like Uber Eats and Grubhub have already figured out what works, so there’s no need to reinvent the wheel. All you have to do is bring their best practices into your own ordering system.
Read more: How to Set Up Food Delivery Without Paying 30% Commissions On Every Order
3 Ways to Compete on Transparency and Trustworthiness
According to data from Preoday, 70% of customers would prefer to support their favorite restaurants, not third-party apps. But there’s a big difference between saying and doing.
Third-party apps have poured a lot of money into designing a clear and transparent ordering solution for customers. They have real-time driver tracking, nutritional information, and delivery ETA built right in.
These apps are highly successful across the planet, and your diners are accustomed to them. Your first-party delivery solution needs to match the level of UX and transparency on third-party apps.
As much as customers say they want to support you, you need to match the ordering experience that they’re used to or next time, they’ll log onto Grubhub and you’ll lose 30% in fees.
Here are three things you can implement right now to craft a smoother ordering experience that your customers will love:
- Be open. Your first-party app or website needs to list all the nutritional information and warnings. Whether a dish is vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free, or contains nuts, list those details clearly on your site so customers know exactly what they’re getting.
- Share everything. Especially your driver’s location. Your app needs to have real-time order tracking, and syncing with Google Maps is a great way to provide this. Order tracking is such an important piece that customers will immediately notice if you don’t have it.
- Manage your drivers. No one wants to wait for an hour and get a lukewarm pizza. The faster your drivers process orders and get back on the road, the happier your customers will be. Consider incentivizing your drivers with a pay-per-order or pay-per-mileage bonus.
Those are just the basic foundations of any honest, open, and efficient food delivery service. If that seems like a lot, then don’t stress. You don’t have to build your own solution from scratch.
HungerRush Delivers On Transparency
At HungerRush, we’ve been working with pizza and QSR restaurant owners since 2003 to implement professional, easy-to-use first-party order systems.
Our app frees you from the shackles of greedy third-party apps and never puts walls between you and your customers. It’s been tried and tested in the restaurant trenches and the feedback speaks for itself:
“The delivery module for HungerRush has been a huge upgrade from our previous system and delivery wait time has improved. Delivery restaurants can definitely benefit from HungerRush.” — Corey Rimmel, Hot Box Cookies
Plus, it doesn’t require you to sink a hefty sum of money into making your own delivery app.
Tired of accepting the status quo? Get a HungerRush demo today.
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