Digital technology has created many wonderful opportunities for restaurants. From KDS platforms with QR code ordering to create a more frictionless customer experience to online table bookings there are many ways in which restaurants can use technology to enhance the experience they offer while improving operations.
With the right POS integrations, restaurants can also open up new revenue streams. More and more hungry consumers have begun using their smartphones to enjoy delicious restaurant food from the comfort of their own homes. The UK’s online food delivery market is steadily expanding with a projected CAGR of 8.49% between 2024 and 2028. Integrating your restaurant POS with food delivery apps like Deliveroo, Uber Eats and Just Eat can help your dishes reach a wider audience.
Still, a presence on a delivery app does not guarantee additional revenue. Restaurants must make efforts to get noticed, earn the trust of hungry diners in their area and climb the rankings on their chosen food delivery apps.
Here, we look at ways restaurants can do just that.
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Learn how food delivery rankings work
In a sense, food delivery apps are just another SEO battlefront to conquer. And just as SEO requires an understanding of how Google differentiates valuable content from spam, you need to understand the Deliveroo ratings system or the Uber Eats algorithm if you want to make your restaurant more visible on their respective apps.
The Uber Eats ratings, like other delivery apps are based on a number of metrics that determine restaurant quality:
- Proximity to the app user
- Number of positive user ratings
- Conversion rate (number of users who have viewed your profile vs number who have placed an order)
- Order prep and delivery time–The faster you get your orders out to customers, the higher food delivery apps will rank you
- Direct searches–When users search for your restaurant by name, the apps view this as a sign of quality and can provide a visibility boost
Once you’ve familiarised yourself with the Uber Eats, Just Eat or Deliveroo algorithm, it becomes clear that something of a balancing act needs to be achieved. Orders need to be delivered promptly but not at the expense of quality. Likewise, while a good delivery order requires time and effort, the last thing a delivery customer wants is to open up a bag of cold food.
Here are some tips to help you steadily climb the ranks in your chosen food delivery apps, turning them into valuable revenue streams.
Use images to your advantage
Since the Uber Eats algorithm, and others like it, places a lot of value on conversion rates, it’s up to you to make sure your food looks irresistible. Use images to your advantage so that users’ mouths start watering and they’re much less likely to click away from you and onto another restaurant’s profile. Invest in high-quality images of your food that represent the quality that diners can expect from your restaurant and your conversion rates will be more likely to rise.
Another great way to improve conversion rates and secure the loyalty of new customers is to offer promotional rates and bundle deals. This is a great way to add value for customers and increase their chances of ordering with you, returning time and again, leaving positive reviews and searching for your restaurant by name. All of which will help to improve your ranking on the app.
Some promotional offers you may wish to adopt include:
- A discount on the customer’s first order
- Percentage discounts on certain items (or on the whole menu)
- Free items when the customer spends a certain amount
- Buy one get one free
Set up a realistic delivery radius
As previously discussed, there is nothing more likely to solicit a negative customer review than a cold dish. And while delivery drivers and restaurants can take every care to ensure that food is kept as hot as possible while in transit, the longer a dish waits, the colder it will be.
Therefore, restaurants need to decide for themselves on a delivery radius that is ambitious but realistic. Spread your net too wide and there is a greater risk of deliveries turning up cold, prompting negative reviews and inevitable refunds. If the net is too narrow, however, restaurants risk limiting the impressions they can make and the revenues they can receive.
Package your deliveries with care and attention
You would never dream of bringing a dish that had been dropped to the floor or that a waiter had mistakenly crushed with their elbow. The same care and attention should be paid to your delivery orders as your table covers.
Of course, the primary differences between the two are the distances that the dishes cover and how many times they change hands. That makes the packaging of your orders extremely important. They should be carefully deposited in packaging that will be able to withstand the rigours of travel without damaging their culinary cargo.
Keep in mind that single-use plastics are anathema for many consumers. The good news is that there are a wealth of more sustainable alternatives derived from corn starch and other biodegradable plant materials.
Add a personal touch
When diners are in your restaurant, your incredible service staff can make a great impression with their warm welcome and outstanding personal skills. While this is much harder to do in a delivery order, there are still ways to add a personal touch and help customers feel even more valued with little or no extra cost. A short hand-written note thanking a customer for their order, or a discount on their next purchase can be a great way to add a personal touch.
Solicit customer reviews
All food delivery apps enable customers to leave short reviews and star ratings for restaurants when they order. These are a great way for other users to determine which restaurants are the best option when their stomachs start growling.
Moreover, the search algorithms that food delivery apps use also view positive customer reviews as a metric for quality. Therefore, the more positive reviews a restaurant has, the more likely they are to climb the rankings.
Actively soliciting customer reviews can help you generate important social proof and improve your food delivery app rankings. Automated reminders to customers to leave reviews are a good idea, as is offering a special promotional code for those who rate and review.
Square offers food delivery app integrations via Deliverect to simplify operations across multiple delivery apps. So you can implement a winning strategy across multiple apps quickly, easily and effectively.
Contact our sales team to learn more about how Square could help your business.