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Restaurant Delivery On Demand: What, Why, And How To Do It


Online food ordering now makes up a whopping 40% of restaurant sales. 

And the numbers don’t lie – the food delivery industry has seen a mind-blowing >204% increase in market revenue over the past five years.

Customers now want their food delivered to their locations pronto.

You might be wondering, “What’s all the fuss about? Why does it matter for my business? And how can I master it?” Well, we have the inside scoop.

In this article, we’ll answer these questions and more. We’ll show you what on-demand delivery is, why you should offer it, and how to do it successfully.

Let’s get started!

What is On-Demand Delivery?

Restaurant delivery on demand is a dining service that caters to the modern customer’s desire for convenience. Simply, it means offering your restaurant’s delectable dishes for delivery to your customers’ doorstep precisely when they want it.

Unlike traditional food delivery, which might have fixed delivery hours, on-demand delivery is all about flexibility. It adapts to the customer’s schedule, allowing them to enjoy your restaurant’s signature dishes without leaving their home or office.

On-demand deliveries leverage technology, including user-friendly apps and efficient logistics, to bridge the gap between your kitchen and the customer’s table. 

It gives your patrons a dining experience that suits their lifestyle. That simultaneously expands your restaurant’s reach and revenue potential.

Why On-Demand Delivery is The Way to Go For Restaurant Business?

Offering on-demand service to your customers has many benefits. Let’s break down why it’s not just a trend but a strategic move for your restaurant;

  1. Meet Customer Demands: On-demand delivery is about elevating the volume of orders you can handle. It assists you in fulfilling your customer’s ever-growing need for a seamless dining experience.
  2. Expand Your Reach: Offering on-demand delivery services means extending your restaurant’s reach beyond its physical boundaries. You’re no longer limited to in-house seating. You can now serve a broader audience, potentially increasing your customer base and revenue.
  3. Keep Up with the Competition: The restaurant industry is evolving, and the competition is fierce. By taking on-demand orders, you’re setting your business apart as a forward-thinking establishment.
  4. Technology Meets Tradition: On-demand delivery marries the convenience of apps and online orders with the timeless tradition of savoring restaurant-quality meals. It’s the perfect blend of old and new, satisfying those who appreciate the familiar tastes of your cuisine.
  5. Convenience: One word that sums up the essence of on-demand delivery is “convenience.” Customers can place orders conveniently, pay without hassle, and enjoy your food without leaving their comfort zone.
  6. Customer Expectations: The modern diner has high expectations. They expect food to be delivered fast, hot, and delicious. Meeting these expectations is necessary.

Offering restaurant delivery on demand isn’t just about keeping up; it’s about thriving. It’s about reaching new customers, keeping loyal ones, and ensuring your business remains relevant.

How to Offer On-Demand Delivery in Restaurants?

Now that you’re convinced, it’s time to roll up your sleeves and get into the nitty-gritty of everything. 

Let’s break it down into essential steps:

1. Prepare your menu and optimize packaging

The first step is to get your menu in shape and find the ideal packaging solutions. This is where your path to on-demand delivery success begins.

Take a good look at your menu. What dishes are the crowd-pleasers? 

Optimizing your menu means selecting items that travel well and can be as scrumptious upon arrival as they are in your restaurant. It’s all about providing your customers with the same delightful experience they’d get at your establishment right in the comfort of their own homes.

But it doesn’t end there. Packaging matters, too. The proper packaging keeps your dishes hot, fresh, and visually appetizing. Make sure you’ve got containers that maintain temperature, prevent leakage, and highlight the culinary artwork within.

2. Set Delivery Areas

You’re on your way to mastering on-demand delivery for your restaurant. 

The next step is to define your delivery area. Think of it as drawing your restaurant’s map of convenience. Where do you want to reach? Which neighborhoods or zones are within your delivery reach?

Start by pinpointing areas that are not only profitable but logistically feasible. Consider the distance from your restaurant and the time it takes for a delivery to reach its destination. Your goal is to ensure timely and hot deliveries without compromising quality.

Once you’ve mapped out your delivery areas, you can move to choose your dispatch companies or team.

3. Choose a Reliable Delivery Service Provider

Your next move is to find the perfect delivery solution for your restaurant. You want to ensure your on-demand delivery service runs like a well-oiled machine. 

There are two ways to this:

Go In-House

Want to keep things close to the heart? Go the in-house route. That means assembling your own transport team, complete with dedicated drivers.

Going in-house gives you the control to handpick your delivery squad, ensuring they share your passion for delivering food that delights. You get to wrap your brand’s personality around every delivery. You can be sure your drivers will go the extra mile, just like you would in your restaurant.

Whether you partner with the experts or build your delivery dream team, remember the keyword is “reliable.” Your chosen option should be as dependable as your signature dish’s mouthwatering flavor.

Partner up with a company offering on-demand service

Consider partnering with a reliable delivery service provider like Stuart, Wolt, and Shippr. These are the seasoned pros in the delivery game who drop off your dishes to your customers with a smile. And what’s the best? You can integrate with third-party delivery services with UpMenu!

When you partner with a dispatch company, you’re enlisting experts specializing in making deliveries a breeze. They’ve got the technology, the drivers, and the experience to ensure your food reaches its destination hot, fresh, and with a dash of style.

Just ensure that they offer delivery services on demand before sealing the deal.

4. Create an Online Ordering System

Online Ordering System
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Now, you must create an online ordering system so customers can place their orders quickly and securely.

An online ordering system is a tool that enables you to accept, process, and deliver online orders. With a system like that, patrons can easily order, schedule delivery, and track their food.

That’s not all; here are more benefits of having an online food ordering system;

  • Increase your sales by reaching more customers online and offering them convenient and fast delivery options.
  • Save money by avoiding commissions and fees from some third-party online ordering apps.
  • Keep your customer data and loyalty by building your brand and reputation online.
  • Manage your virtual and offline orders from one place using the UpMenu dashboard or app.
  • Integrate your online ordering system with your POS system, payment gateway, delivery service, and other tools that you use for your restaurant.
  • Optimize your online ordering system with features like coupons, discounts, loyalty programs, feedback forms, analytics, and more.
  • Even with a busy schedule, the system ensures you don’t miss any customers’ orders.

There are many ways to create an online ordering system for your restaurant. However, one of the easiest and most effective ones is to use an all-in-one software like UpMenu. 

UpMenu is a platform that helps you easily create your own online ordering system. You don’t need any technical skills or experience. You just need to create an account, upload your menu, and customize your settings. UpMenu will take care of the rest. 

If you’re a restaurant owner looking to optimize your delivery services, make sure to check out these tips on how to increase food delivery sales.

5. Choose a Pricing Strategy

Next, determine your restaurant menu pricing for your service. 

Your pricing strategy is the method you use to set the delivery fee or charge when customers order online. It should cover your delivery costs like labor, fuel, packaging, and insurance, your profit margin, and customer satisfaction.

There are many different pricing strategies to use, but these are some of the most effective ones:

Flat delivery fee

The flat fee is the most straightforward and transparent pricing strategy. You charge a fixed amount for every delivery order, regardless of the distance, time, or size. For example, you can charge $5 for every delivery order. 

It is easy to communicate and apply, but it may not cover your delivery costs if the order is too far or too large.

Variable fee

The variable fee is a more flexible and fair pricing strategy. You charge a different amount for every delivery order, depending on the distance, time, or size. For example, you can charge $1 per mile, $0.5 per minute, or 10% of the order value. 

With this pricing, you can cover your delivery costs more accurately and adjust to different situations.

Free delivery

Offering free deliveries is a more customer-oriented and competitive pricing strategy. You can offer free delivery for every delivery order or for orders that meet specific criteria. That could be a minimum order value or a loyalty program membership.

For instance, you can make free deliveries for orders over $20 or for loyal customers. Free deliveries can help you attract and retain more customers and increase your sales volume.

Pro tip

You can also combine different pricing strategies depending on customers or occasions. Also, whichever pricing strategy you choose, ensure the set delivery fee is reasonable, transparent, and consistent with your brand image and value proposition.

6. Train Staff

After putting everything in place, you must train your staff to use the online ordering system and handle the delivery orders. 

Training your staff ensures they are familiar with the new technology and delivery system. 

Here are some tips on how to train your staff for online ordering:

  • Create a training plan with clear goals and objectives. 
  • Help them understand the value of online ordering and motivate them to learn and perform well.
  • Include interactive demos and role-play sessions in your training. 
  • Show them how to use the online ordering system, from monitoring an order status to processing, packing it, and delivering it. 
  • Conduct special sessions for different stations, such as kitchen staff, front-of-house staff, and delivery staff. For example, kitchen staff need to know how to prioritize and manage online and dine-in orders.
  • Teach them to differentiate between dine-in and online orders. You can use different colors, labels, or symbols to mark the online orders, the kitchen tickets, and the packaging. This will help them avoid confusion and mistakes when handling the orders.
  • Provide feedback, guidance, and support to your staff as they learn and adapt to the online ordering system. 

With these tips, you can train your staff to handle online orders like a pro.

7. Spread The Word About Your On-Demand Delivery Service

Congratulations, you’ve mastered the art of on-demand delivery. Now it’s time to let your customers know!

These are things you can do to promote your new on-demand service:

  • Online Presence: Get your online platforms singing the praises of your new service. Your website and social media accounts should showcase it.
  • Eye-Catching Promos: Create enticing promotions to kickstart the buzz around your on-demand service. Announce good deals, whether free delivery on the first order or special discounts.
  • Collaborate with Food Apps: Partner with popular food delivery apps to expand your reach. These platforms already have a massive customer base looking for delicious options.
  • Local Advertising: Remember the good ol’ local marketing strategies. Flyers, banners, and even word of mouth can be powerful tools in getting your neighbors excited about your new service.

Remember, the key to success in spreading the word is consistency. Keep nurturing your online presence, promotions, and collaborations. Over time, you’ll get more happy, loyal customers.

Manage Your On-Demand Delivery Orders Better with UpMenu

You’ve learned the basics of on-demand delivery for your restaurant, but how can you make it even more efficient and profitable? Partner with UpMenu, the ultimate online ordering system for restaurants.

UpMenu is more than just a website or an app. It’s a complete solution that lets you create and manage your branded online restaurant. You can easily upload your menu, customize your settings, accept and track online orders, and communicate with your customers.

But that’s not all. UpMenu also integrates seamlessly with your existing systems, such as your POS, payment gateway, delivery service, and more. This way, you can streamline your operations and avoid errors or delays.

With UpMenu, you can take your on-demand delivery to the next level and stand out. 

Key Takeaways

  • Online food ordering constitutes 40% of restaurant sales, with the industry growing by 204% in the last five years.
  • On-demand delivery caters to modern customers’ convenience preferences with flexible, technology-driven options.
  • Benefits of on-demand delivery include meeting customer demands, expanding reach, and staying competitive.
  • To implement on-demand delivery, optimize menus, define delivery areas, choose reliable providers, create an online ordering system, set pricing strategies, and train staff.
  • Pricing strategies can be flat fees, variable fees, or free delivery, depending on goals and customer base.
  • Promote the service through online presence, promotions, collaborations, and local advertising to attract and retain customers, and consider using tools like UpMenu for efficiency.
Julian Lankstead

Julian Lankstead

Julian Lankstead is the founder of He helps businesses increase revenue by providing strategies to improve business process efficiency.

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