Deliveries are Booming, How’s Your Food Holding Up?
The way people eat is changing. No one is expected to get a table to have dinner anymore — they now order it through apps like Postmates, UberEats, or Grubhub. Restaurants have to learn how to adapt and provide a restaurant-quality delivery food.
People are ordering food for delivery more often. In fact, 28% of consumers ordered delivery more often than a year ago, and some restaurants have seen delivery increases to up to 75% of their business. As many orders for delivery are via the internet, reviews are now a deciding factor for success as well.
The word is out, and businesses all over the country are taking steps to ensure a consistent food experience between in-restaurant and in-home. Keeping customers returning, high ratings and positive reviews paramount. SoggyFoodSucks has an inexpensive solution that helps you to achieve just that without being forced to make significant changes to your menu and more. We’ll explain in a moment, but first, let’s take a look at the importance of online reputation as well as how restaurants have been adapting to a growing delivery market.
The Almighty Review
The power of the review has never been stronger. A restaurant’s online reputation can make or break the bottom line. Statistics show that 94% of diners are influenced by online reviews and that an increase in Yelp rating of just 1 star can drive a 5-9% boost in revenue. Restaurants now have to cater to multiple different audiences to ensure consistently high ratings, as well.
The younger audience of 18-25-year-olds expects a broader range of styles and flavors of food. This need for variety also makes them order takeout more than any other age group. A recent study found that 20% dine out or order takeout/delivery 4 or more times a week. Social media is the primary way this group usually does their research and post reviews/feedback. Visuals are all critical as food photography, and event postings via platforms like Instagram and Snapchat tend to be the most effective way to grab the younger generation’s attention.
However, restaurants can’t afford to tailor everything to just the younger audience and ignore the older audiences. For example, more than half of baby boomers (ages 53-72) dine out or order takeout/delivery on a weekly basis. Given that boomers still have the most active spending power (with 70% of the disposable income in the US), they make up an extremely lucrative group. Believe it or not, they are on the internet often, at an average of 27 hours a week7, and use social media as well! Though they may not be on Snapchat and Instagram much, they are on Facebook. Boomers tend to be brand loyal as well as long as they consistently get high quality and excellent tasting food. With takeout, they’re even pickier, with 75% expecting food quality and taste of delivery to be as good as in-restaurant6. A disappointing delivery can definitely shift their loyalties elsewhere quickly.
Though perhaps via different sites and applications, all ages of diners will use their mobile phone to research a restaurant’s offering, photographs, and reviews before ordering. This sets the expectation that the food delivered will look and taste just as good as the advertised and reviewed in-restaurant food.
How Restaurants Are Adapting
Restaurants are going to great lengths to make sure consumer expectations are met or exceeded to drive good reviews and increased business. Some are upgrading their infrastructure to include separate takeout counters, to-go windows, and staff, but most just find space where they can to accommodate. As far as the delivered food experience itself, there seem to be two main tactics that businesses have been consistently adapting:
Changing the Menu
With the boom of online food ordering via applications like GrubHub, Seamless, UberEats – restaurants are actually changing or creating a separate menu to accommodate. Chefs are using more limited ingredients and approaches based on what will hold up better for delivery. Where a Chef might have specialized in pasta previously, they have switched to more pizza offerings. Where they might have seared meat for someone in-restaurant, they are considering braising or roasting. Adjustments are being made based on taste that can be delivered consistently rather than just what tastes best.
Photo by Kristina Bratko on Unsplash
As more diners spend less time at the location itself, restaurants have been turning to eye-catching delivery package design to convey restaurant ambiance. The goal is to stand out from the competition and most importantly, be memorable. Some businesses are focusing on making their packaging recyclable/sustainable and promoting that fact. Some merely focus on the brand colors associated and clear packaging so you can quickly check you have the right food. Others go so far as to create custom packaging that best transports the many foods in their platters, i.e., eggs, bacon, hash browns and a not-so-short stack of pancakes!
Any Other Options that are Easier, Less Disruptive?
Yes, there is a more accessible and less expensive option. SoggyFoodSucks is a patented, peel and stick solution that maintains the quality and freshness of your delivered food, so you aren’t forced to make significant changes to what’s been working for your business. If you think anything discussed so far will help your business, go for it! But you don’t have to change your menu or create uniquely designed packaging to keep your customers happy with your delivery offering. The quality of the food itself can continue to do most of that work for you. Just apply our patch to your takeout container lid, and it traps the condensation before it ruins your food.
Your food can taste just as good in-home as in-restaurant without limiting your offering. Designed by a rocket scientist, SoggyFoodSucks is a straightforward answer that will help keep the good reviews coming in and your delivery business booming!
For more on the SoggyFoodSucks product and how it works go HERE.