The pandemic brought about a host of changes to the way we live, breathe, and eat. In the era of mask mandates and social distancing, many restaurants are struggling to adjust to the shifting realities, while food delivery services have never been more popular.
Of course, food is far more fragile than other products delivered through eCommerce platforms, for example. It involves unique logistical requirements and other factors that affect the overall quality. Enter food delivery software.
The following article throws the spotlight on five companies that provide dispatching services for small independent restaurants and big chains. We’ve evaluated everything from the ease of use to the cash-tracking tools to help you pick a delivery service for your business.
Best Food Delivery Software in 2022
- OnTime 360
Employing decent software for food delivery can be a sizable investment. That’s why we compare dozens of delivery management systems in search of ideal options for small businesses that can also accommodate larger companies. Here’s the logic behind our list of delivery platforms and the criteria we used when assembling it.
You’ve decided to start your own catering business, found a venue and a team of chefs, dug up grandma’s signature recipes, and designed a logo for your brand. All that’s left to do is invest in decent online food delivery software. Mindful of the financial challenges facing almost every small business these days, we’ve identified services with free plans. Our list also includes monthly subscriptions under $75 and per-order fees under $0.30.
Packages that came with unlimited user logins were also included, as well as those that didn't require long-term commitments. Another popular pricing model is pay-as-you-go. A food service delivery software that offers pricing based on services you use has significant advantages.
First of all, we evaluate tracking features, as they’re essential in the delivery process. Cash and tip tracking allow restaurants to accept customers’ cash payments upon delivery and then keep records of the transactions for individual drivers. Real-time food delivery tracking is a big plus, as it allows both you and your customer to follow the drivers’ route, check for traffic jam delays, communicate with the driver if necessary, and get ready for picking up the package.
Offering deliveries solely by bicycle isn’t the best solution for long distances, as the food will get cold before it reaches the consumer. The same goes for cars in congested urban areas. To improve customer satisfaction, it’s essential that restaurants offer multiple delivery vehicles: cars, scooters, bicycles, couriers on foot, even driverless delivery. The software must be able to track the food order with each type so that restaurants can keep their customers updated about the arrival times.
Most software options that deal with food deliveries provide ordering management features. From the moment the customer places an order through the website, mobile app, or social media platforms, the food delivery program has to capture and easily manage orders for delivery and pick-up. Order tickets are then automatically printed, which makes the process even smoother. A big plus is a function that deals with repeated orders and rewards loyal customers.
SMS getaways enable restaurants, drivers, and couriers to contact their customers directly via the food delivery app software without having to manually search for their contact details. When the delivery is made, you’ll get a confirmation on your device. If you’re allowed to integrate with a third-party program, such as Twilio, you can further extend your service by getting virtual phone numbers instead of private ones.
Aside from basic features, we also look for thoughtful touches that bring more for the same price and robust features that help the software stand out. We highly value all the software options with voice notifications, custom messaging, multi-stop route optimization, digital signatures, or comprehensive online tutorials to help you out when you start using a food delivery company software.
The option to integrate the software with existing business applications will help you manage customer orders, kitchen and delivery details, and inventory levels from a centralized platform. Software that offers direct integration with popular Point-of-Sale or POS brands ranks high. This software then acts as a bridge between the restaurant’s POS system and the third-party ordering platform.
Food businesses that use food delivery software with POS integration no longer have to enter delivery details into the POS system. The software automatically pushes the orders into the POS and prints tickets in the kitchen at the same time. Other popular integrations include online ordering tools such as Restolabs, Toast Now, and GloriaFood. If there isn’t a direct POS integration available, we look for software with open APIs that allow restaurants to build their own integrations, usually through the middleman app Zapier.
Ease of Use
The success of every food business depends a great deal on speed and efficiency. According to recent statistics, 27% of those who order food are willing to pay extra for fast delivery. That’s why today’s food delivery management software provides access to intuitive dashboards, user-friendly apps, and preset templates for making the whole process hassle-free. If hungry customers have to spend more than a few seconds searching for the payment terminal, they’ll probably give up. That’s why managing all the services from a single dashboard can be a game-changer.
Aside from enabling consumers to click through simple steps and place their orders, a good platform for food delivery should care about restaurant owners, too. Integrations, installations, tickets, and proof of delivery can be overwhelming for new businesses. That’s why delivery software for a small business must come with one-on-one installation guidance, training video tutorials, and diligent customer support that’s available round the clock.
Tookan’s top-notch features, direct POS integration, and excellent customer service make it one of the best software for delivering food. If we’re focusing on consumer experience and the best app for them to place orders, then we’d recommend the DoorDash app for iOS and Android devices.
This bold endeavor requires thorough market research and identifying your target niche. Restaurant delivery systems should be legally and financially covered, so make sure to study all the requirements and determine the initial investment and related costs. Check if you need an additional license for food deliveries. Also, consider employing a platform for food deliveries instead of manually taking orders through various channels. Lastly, advertise your restaurant’s menu as much as possible through pamphlets, social media, and text messages.
In the age of social distancing, this industry is booming. A surge in demand for online shopping and the delivery of goods and services resulted in more companies switching to online platforms. With decent food delivery software for small businesses and restaurants, you can quickly transform anyone’s brick-and-mortar eatery into a food distribution center.