Meal delivery apps a ‘game changer’ for diners and industry, say restaurateurs

Third-party software apps that allow you to order food from a restaurant and have it delivered to your home are gaining popularity: sales are now over $2 billion annually and growth is about 15 per cent each year, according to research group NPD.

They’re changing the face of the food and beverage industry and while the end-users — folks ordering food from the app — generally love it, many restaurateurs struggle with the idea.

… There is a lot of business being done. With more than a million active customers placing millions of orders each month, Skip The Dishes says they help their restaurant partners “expand their reach, serve more customers, and earn customer loyalty. In a marketplace increasingly ruled by the expectation of greater convenience and choice, online delivery provides the options more customers want,” according to information provided by the company.

… That can certainly be the case, but in the third-party delivery process, restaurateurs don’t like losing control of the food and the relationship with the customer once the packaged meal leaves the restaurant, as Nick Benninger of Waterloo Ont.’s Fat Sparrow Group explains.

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