The One Way to Build Sales Volume You Aren’t Using Yet

In the evolving restaurant industry, there’s no shortage of new challenges to tackle, from food trends to changing consumer habits to new social media channels. Despite these constant changes, the top priority for most restaurant businesses is a familiar one: profitability.


According to the National Restaurant Association, the biggest obstacle for limited-service restaurants in 2015 is building and maintaining sales volume, but not for lack of trying. Restaurants are regularly testing promotions, rotating menu items and forging new partnerships in hopes of growing their revenues.


Each of these tactics has its place in restaurant management, but none directly solves the real problem of exposure. Not mention many require major investment of both time and money before you even know if it will be successful and some aren’t even trackable.


For restaurants that already offer a high-quality product and compelling customer experience, the quickest way to boost visibility and drive sales is by opening a new sales channel. And this is where online ordering comes into play. Partnering with GrubHub for online ordering offers additional benefits, access to our 5.6 million diners and no upfront costs to restaurants to give this tactic a try.


Consumers today conduct much of their personal and professional lives online and from their mobile devices, whether they’re buying shoes or booking their next vacation. Unsurprisingly, they want (and expect) to be able to satisfy their hunger pangs the same way.


Here are four ways online ordering can help increase restaurant sales:


  • Reach new customers: Online ordering augments restaurant profitability by encouraging new audiences to discover your brand. Customers who haven’t heard of your restaurant via word-of-mouth or in-person can still find you on the Internet. As customers are increasingly using technology to discover and order from restaurants, businesses that don’t offer online ordering will struggle to meet their full sales potential.


  • Amplify orders from existing customers: 34 percent of customers say technology makes them order takeout and delivery more often, according to the National Restaurant Association. Online ordering serves as an effective way to increase loyalty among existing customers. The easier it is for them to get their favorite dish, the more frequently they’ll buy from you.


  • Process orders faster: Our research shows that on average, restaurants take less than 45 seconds to process the average GrubHub order, compared to two minutes for phone orders. Online ordering not only allows restaurants to accommodate more customers in less time, it eliminates the inherent frustration of analog channels. Language barriers, wonky phone connections and background noise become non-issues when restaurants allow digital orders.


  • Prioritize convenience: Providing a thoughtful, no-hassle ordering experience is just as important as a comfortable restaurant dining experience. With online ordering, customers aren’t expected to fumble with credit card numbers and wait on hold (or worse, get disconnected after an extended wait). Incorporating small features into your online platform like saved order history and payment info ups the convenience factor and can have a big impact on restaurant profitability.


Curious about how to get started with online ordering? Download our new whitepaper, The Restaurateur’s Guide to Online Ordering.