The Challenges and Benefits of Online Food Delivery

In our modern, high tech world, it has not only become normal but expected, that most individuals manage their lives via their cell phones. It seems everyone stores their most precious photos, manages their calendars, and follows family and friends via their preferred social media accounts on the phones that are rarely more than an arm’s length away. Many savvy, tech-minded entrepreneurs are taking advantage of this to build new, exciting, and convenient businesses. One of the more recent industries to explode on the scene is online food delivery.

The Birth of a New Industry

The concept of online food delivery is a fairly simple one: If a consumer can have a pizza delivered, why not sushi rolls, or a favored diner meal, from other restaurants in town? Naturally, not every restaurant has a need to hire individual delivery drivers, but collectively these restaurants could, in theory, benefit from a centralized place where contracted drivers could pick up and deliver food for them. Fortunately, this business model already existed in the form of rideshare apps, where a user would request a driver to pick them up and drive them to their destination through a convenient app on their phones. It is from the success of ridesharing that the online food delivery industry was born.

Challenges

The creation of a brand new industry is never a smooth road, and online food delivery is no exception. Many of these difficulties lie within the restaurants themselves, who were not accustomed to receiving and preparing take-out options. As such, they had no convenient place to store packaged foods as they awaited the arrival of the delivery person. This creates an unorganized atmosphere for restaurant staff, and slows down delivery times, affecting both the restaurant and the driver. Many restaurants are looking to improve this model by installing shelving at convenient locations within their restaurant so that drivers only spend a few seconds picking up the food.

How to Win

Online food delivery services such as Foodora gain popularity due to the variety of partnering restaurants, reputation of their drivers, and the quality of their apps. Consumers have become used to receiving the goods they order online in a timely manner and in good condition, with the ability to track their packages until they arrive. Food delivery should be modeled in a similar way while making the apps intuitive and convenient. Examples may include storing credit card information, saving favorite restaurants and meals, and an accurate delivery timeline.

There is no question that online food delivery, and similar businesses, will continue to gain popularity. Ensuring an efficient business model will be a major key to success in the future.

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