Virtual restaurants: the new secret weapon of the restaurant industry [Whitepaper preview]

This past year brought many challenges for the restaurant industry—especially for independent businesses. But restaurateurs have never been the type to pack it in when things get tough. Across the country and around the world, they’ve reimagined their businesses from the ground up to weather the storm. That effort has taken many forms: expanding delivery, embracing pickup, boosting online presence, and in many cases all of the above.

Delivery in particular has been a lifeline for independent restaurants. Looking at just one month last spring, NPD group found that overall restaurant traffic had dropped 22%—but delivery orders increased almost 70%.

Some restaurateurs, however, are digging even deeper, asking questions they’ve never considered before:

  • How can I bring in new orders and customers I haven’t been able to reach?
  • How can I make better use of excess staff and kitchen capacity when orders are slow?
  • How can I diversify my operations to take care of my staff and make my business stronger for the future?

Now, many have found a common answer: virtual restaurants. With explosive growth in online ordering and delivery, it’s now possible to launch a brand-new restaurant concept using existing kitchen and staff, with a storefront that exists entirely online.

What are virtual restaurants?

Virtual restaurants are delivery-only restaurant concepts that operate out of an existing brick-and-mortar restaurant. They accept orders exclusively online through apps and websites like Grubhub. And they offer a quick, easy way to generate new orders and revenues, without increasing overhead costs.

Grubhub’s portfolio of branded virtual restaurants:

For some restaurateurs, finding the additional time, effort, and investment to build a virtual restaurant from the ground up can be nearly impossible. That’s why Grubhub has partnered with industry experts to offer a portfolio of pre-built virtual restaurants to our independent restaurant partners. Our growing portfolio of Branded Virtual Restaurants includes a variety of cuisines created by expert chefs and backed by celebrities and well-known partners in the industry. You choose your virtual restaurant concept and we take care of everything you need to get started and set up for success.

Want to learn more about virtual restaurants and how Grubhub can help you find the best virtual solution for your business? Download our latest whitepaper.