With the arrival of food delivery services across the world, many users prefer to order online due to convenience of getting food delivered at home, book a table or to find the best offers and deals available online. If you are a restaurant owner or into hospitality business, I am going to cover 15 must have features, which any food ordering system must have for your business.
- Online Ordering: No matter how much money you spend on advertisement or marketing, if the customer cannot order easily than you are losing sales. Most of traditional business owners takes orders over the phone, which can result into lot of time spend in writing down orders, which can also result in errors. The online ordering system will allow your customers to place online orders any time during the day error free. You as a business owner will be able to get full details of the order via email, android or iPhone app or by Whats App. You will be able to save lot of time resulting into saving lot of $$ and a great customer service for your users.
- Take Away- Take Away functionality in a food ordering engine will allow your customers to place online orders and pick it up from your store. This will save customers lot of time in waiting at your restaurant if he orders when he visits your store. This functionality will save his lot of time.
If you have a take away system and your competitor doesn’t and if the customer is in a rush, you are more likely to receive the order from this type of customer. You have option to receive cash during pick up or online payment through payment gateway.
3) Table reservation- During busy hours or on weekends most of restaurants are not very likely to provide table booking, as they will lose money if the customer doesn’t arrive on time. Whenever they have given the table to someone else due to late arrival, it has mostly resulted in arguments and bad customer service. For this reason, most of restaurant owners doesn’t accept table booking during busy hours.
FoodChow innovative solution allows restaurant to accept table booking only when they pay the minimum amount which restaurant sets up for table booking. It also has feature to set their own policy. This way if customer does not visit the restaurant on time, they will be charged plus table can be allocated to someone else as per the time set by restaurant owner. This is a win-win for customer and restaurant owners, as customer doesn’t not have to wait for table booking during rush hours if they pay in advance.
4) Pre-Order- Imagine you are planning your birthday party after 4 days and you want to order your favorite food online.
You can’t order it through calling it directly to chef. FoodChow offers you this unique functionality which gives you privilege to place pre-orders which mostly other food ordering system isn’t providing you.
5) Catering menu- Most of customers who organize food for birthday and other parties would like to get special rates for bulk orders. Specialized catering companies provides bulk rates, but other restaurant businesses do this over the phone, as they don’t push the catering services. FoodChow catering module allows this restaurant to add a separate menu for catering to increase their sales and tapped the corporate world. The catering module allows restaurant owners to receive large catering orders online.
6) Item images- When it comes to order food online a good picture always makes its impact. If you look at big brands MC Donald or Burger King, their whole concept of marketing is showing nice food images. So, if you decide to take professional photos of your food items, this feature will help you a lot in growing your sales. This feature will make your menu look good and appealing to the customers.
7) Cash on Delivery- Most of developing countries across the world doesn’t have penetration of Debit and Credit Card yet.
If you are living in one of these countries make sure your online food system has Cash on Delivery option to receive orders from non-credit card customers. This option will allow everyone to place online orders.
8) Payment Gateway Integration: Many restaurants have faced issued of receiving unsolicited orders, where a customer places Cash on Delivery order and they never come to pick up or the delivery address doesn’t exist. This results in loss of revenue for restaurant owners and businesses. The payment gateway integration will allow you to receive orders and getting paid instantly, which will help you in getting rid of spam orders
9) SEO Friendly-If you are a restaurant and have a website then make sure it is SEO friendly, which means google and other search engines can easily read the targeted keywords to attract the right customers to your location. There are number of factors for an SEO Friendly website like Sitemap, Robots.txt file, Page Speed, DomainRelevancy, Favicon and much more. Your page must have high quality content and user-friendly design to be ranked higher in search engines.
10) Admin Panel- The system should have an admin panel to make any changes to the price, add images, receive orders, adjust tax and everything else you need to do to manage your business. If you don’t have this, you will have lot of challenges in managing your business efficiently.
11) Order notification App– You must be notified instantly whenever a customer is placing an order as you will need to fulfill the order within few minutes. The system should be able to convey order status to your customer through emails, SMS, live status tracking and easily contactable by customer.
12) Missed order alert- Sometimes if restaurant manager or owner is away from their phone, they may miss order notification. In order to clarify customers.FoodChow gives calls alert by giving them automated call through their system, this way they will never miss an order
13) Delivery module-You should be able to enter custom delivery charges according to suburbs, zones and distance. The delivery module should be flexible enough to customize charges for local deliveries, national deliveries and international deliveries.
14) Easy to use- The food ordering solution should be user friendly and easy to use. If your customer can’t understand how to order with your online system he will immediately quit and you will lose their valuable customer.
15) Item Customization– The item customization feature will allow the customer to customize their own meal or preferences according to their choice. Example-Add extra topping on Pizza, add extra chilly to a curry, Make food either mild, hot or medium. This flexibility will allow customer to place order according to the way they like their food to be prepared. By this feature you can understand your customer deeply. Any guideline coming from your customer is important like it can be cooking tips or specifications about what to add in his meal and what not to add.
Jigar Doriwala founder of Tenacious Techies have developed FoodChow to help restaurant owners and hospitality businesses across the world. If you are one of this business owners, check out completely free online food ordering system developed after feedback restaurant owners. If you like the article please share it with your network who may find it useful before purchasing a restaurant food ordering system.