Delivery should be thought of as an extension of your brand. Every restaurant owner who offers delivery should strive to provide the same efficient, professional and service-oriented experience that customers experience in the dining room. But with many challenges — high driver turnover, difficulty predicting delivery demand and high administrative costs — an efficient delivery process can be hard to achieve.
Luckily for restaurateurs who are testing the pros and cons of delivery for the first time, there are food delivery best practices that can help pave the way to delivery success.
5 Food Delivery Best Practices
Offering your customers delivery allows them to enjoy the dishes they love with the convenience of having it delivered to their door. But launching and managing an efficient food delivery operation takes more than a snap of the fingers. It requires a plan, an investment of time and resources and a commitment to incremental improvements along the way.
Many restaurateurs find that the time and energy of a delivery service can be more than they bargained for. Delivery is great way to increase sales volume – but at what cost?
If you are considering adding delivery, here are a few food delivery best practices for a smoother journey.
Set proper boundaries
Be realistic. When deciding which areas to deliver to, it can be tempting to blanket your local market. Instead, focus on providing the best delivery service you can to a smaller area before considering expansion. The reputation you establish early on will be invaluable as your restaurant reaches new diners down the road.
Market your delivery service
It’s key to let your loyal diners know that you’re now offering delivery. Build awareness through channels like email marketing, social media, direct mail, branded vehicles, in-house signage and GrubHub. Using first-time delivery discounts can also be a great way to encourage your diners to give delivery a try.
Create a delivery-specific menu
Some items on your dining room menu may be less than ideal for delivery: They might arrive a mess, or they won’t be as tasty unless they’re served straight from the kitchen. Remove these items from your delivery menu and add items that hold up well during delivery so your customers only enjoy the best delivery-friendly dishes you offer.
Get the packaging right
Your drivers and in-house staff need to know the best ways to package food that’s bound for your customers’ homes. Take the time to train them on proper packaging and handling processes. Make sure hot and cold foods are packaged separately, and consider investing in insulated boxes to meet the highest standards of food quality and safety.
Integrate online ordering
Customers love online ordering because it’s convenient and they love delivery for the same reason. Put them together, and you’ve got a winning combination. When your customers order delivery online through GrubHub, it cuts processing time by more than half. A delivery order placed online is the fastest, easiest way to deliver delicious food to your diners’ doorsteps.
Are you looking to learn all the benefits of delivery? Want to make the most of it by following food delivery best practices? Then download our new white paper, “The Restaurateur’s Guide to Delivery,” by clicking here.