Starting an Online Food Ordering and Delivery Business: Benefits and Challenges

Consumers around the world are realising the value of time and therefore their patience level is going down, especially, when it comes to things that could be automated with the available technology. It’s now becoming increasingly important for businesses to go online. In order to thrive in the modern economy, the choice between going online or not is becoming less of a choice by every passing day. Businesses that are equipped to go online, therefore, have higher chances to thrive

1. Leveraging Technology

It is worth mentioning that businesses that leverage the latest technologies methods and practices, do so across the board, without reserving any hierarchical and procedural exceptions. And that is where their strength and success lie. One such business is Amazon which impressively uses technology to invoke needs in their clients, communicate the merits of merchandise and deliver seamlessly, something to which the entire world community is a witness.

Ever wondered, that of the many reasons, which one particularly keeps certain businesses alive and thriving, but others failing and grieving? Yes, the technology and the use of it; AI-inspired processes, virtual chatbots, social media websites, SEOs, etc. As they say- “Tough times don’t last but tough businesses certainly do”, businesses of today must learn the tricks of the trade to stay afloat aboard the technological boat that can sway our businesses, anywhere.

1.1. Technology Evolves Businesses

It goes without saying that technology has certainly driven the evolution of businesses in the entire world. Continuously adapting to such evolutionary standards and effectively adopting new technologies is essential for businesses of all sizes and nature, especially the food industry which has witnessed a blitzkrieg competition in recent years.

With everything considered, the central idea for businesses is to find ways to continually evolve. “Even if you are on the right track, you will get run over if you just sit over there”, opined Will Rogers. So how do we save ourselves from getting run over? Or how do we continually evolve as a business? Of course, with technology and its aspects at the fulcrum, a right approach, subtle business tactics and a proper and well-executed plan, we can help our businesses sail through smoothly.

2. Food Business & Technology: Joined at hip

Starting a business in a market space that is technologically demanding is hard, but the benefits outweigh the challenges convincingly. It’s guaranteed to provide higher visibility, better engagement, opportunities for better branding, among other things. All these factors lead to higher conversions which could not have been achieved in a traditional brick and mortar business.

Farsighted businesses adopt the incorporation of automation into their processes early on. That is an example of a good strategy. On the other hand, myopic businesses discard such steps as unnecessary.

Following are a few compelling reasons as to why businesses in general, and food businesses in particular, should emply the usage of software automation and go online:
  1. Streamlined Business Processes: It simplifies recurring business activities by allowing machines and software to do the heavy lifting for you. Since food businesses demand tackling higher engagement with customers, it requires an increased degree of automation.
  2. Cost-effective: Outsourcing redundant business activities to automation and upgraded IT processes reduces the need to have too much labour, minimizes paperwork expenses, overhauling and maintenance costs.
  3. Increased Efficiency: Automated processes owing to their inherent sequential nature, streamline a lot of activities, thereby, enhancing the workflow and making it more efficient. Was there no automation, food businesses would not have been able to become so swift in their online food deliveries and other related processes.
  4. Fewer Errors: The introduction of technology and automation into the business process largely minimizes the chances of making errors, thereby making your business become more accurate.
  5. Increased Visibility: Going online increases the visibility of the business. It certainly makes your presence count by yielding good economic returns.
  6. Competitive Edge: By going online, you are saved from the threat of getting overshadowed by rival businesses, which otherwise could have been done easily

3. Is your business really leveraging the available technology proved to give exponential growth?

3. Is your business really leveraging the available technology proved to give exponential growth?

Groundbreaking changes and innovations in technology have increased the stakes not just for solidly established businesses but for start-ups too.

So, is your food business one of the groups which can utilize technology to its advantage?

Or if not, does it have the requisite technology to be the market leader?

Or is your business capable enough to make a fortune by making the right use of technology?

Technology, if used rightly by businesses leads to obvious progress. Businesses incorporating technology must learn about the use of the following aspects and the merits they bring along with themselves to foster a business’s capabilities.

  • Better Communication: The use of technology creates new ways to communicate. The more the number of ways to communicate, the easier and greater is the reach of businesses.
  • Efficiency Tools: Technology provides better customer relationship management (CRM) tools to businesses.
  • Artificial Intelligence: The availability of artificial intelligence (AI) chatbots that businesses can always use for their benefit.
  • Better Marketing Opportunities: Technology has made it easier for businesses to showcase their presence and business skills across different social media forums, pages, etc.

It’s no secret that the online presence of businesses guarantees more impressions and increased engagement and conversions. But is their mere presence enough? As customers grow increasingly impatient towards their order delivery time, the need of the hour is to make your business prompt and swift. This raises the question, “Can implementing a hyperlocal product delivery process help in reducing the order waiting time for customers?”

4. Automation is the future: Acting hyperlocal, reaching global

4. Automation is the future: Acting hyperlocal, reaching global

In fact, if you take a note of how businesses have lately gone online and are selling their products, you shall find a major percentage of them have increased their use of technology, at multiple levels, in their operations resulting in increased levels of automation. Gartner, inc., a financial analyst company, asserted that Chinese businesses that illustrated the most resilience during the pandemic were the ones that partnered with highly reputed digital providers and incorporated automation into their business plans.

5. Brick and Mortar Businesses are Going Online

The so-called brick and mortar businesses too, are going online in order to stay competitively upfront. Imagine a company that merely sells through physical stores instead of selling online. Or still better, just think of a scenario where the pandemic has dented your business sales and affected your future prospects badly. What do you do then? You cannot operate physically. You are incapable to undertake technology as a means to spur your business growth. You feel restricted, to say the least. In such circumstances, familiarizing your business with technology and getting automated is certainly the key aspect.

But the question is how to go about doing it? The following suggestive aspects can be touched upon.

  • Leverage the Internet: Increased use of technology and invoking more internet-enabled services.
  • Automated Responses: Using chatbots to generate prompt responses to clients.
  • User-friendliness: Make your business website look aesthetically pleasing and easy to interact with for increased user engagement.
  • Social Media Marketing: Using social media marketing effectively for a greater reach.

Besides these, there are numerous ways of employing technology in your food business.

5.1. Is Incorporating Technology into your Food Business Hard?

For companies on the offensive, certainly not. A hyperlocal food delivery system can surely make you more technology-enabled and increasingly responsive to customer queries and grievances if any.

Specifically writing, food business ideas never go out of vogue as people have a biological craving to eat several times a day. Starting a business that is centred around various delectable food delicacies can be an economically rewarding experience. Online food businesses that are immersed knee-deep into technology have clearly become a fad. Be it business finances, generating merchandise sales, operational flow through, technology has a considerable role to play everywhere. So, why not go online, turn digital, adopt automated processes, act hyperlocal, get “foodtechhed” and reserve your share of pie when you can? The statistics to follow will surely push thoughtful businesses towards going online.

5.2. Growing smartphone penetration statistics: Is it time now to make your business go online?

‘It’s always about timing. If it’s too soon, no one understands. If it’s too late, everyone’s forgotten.

The world has witnessed an exponential rise in the number of smartphones being bought by customers across the globe. The global market has moved from landline phones in-a-few- homes of a town to having mobile phones with almost every member-of-a-home in the last decade or so. A report on smartphone penetration published in December 2021 cites that the global smartphone penetration rate is estimated to have reached over 78 per cent in 2020. Data in the same report reveals that in North America and Europe, the smartphone adoption rate stands at about 82 per cent and 72 per cent respectively. These statistics are one compelling reason as to why businesses should go online. Human observations and data reveal that a significant number of food bookings via online platform through the use of mobile phones has been on the rise ever since the increasing penetration of mobile phones around the globe. For far sighted businesses, this data can serve as a strong basis and catalyst to get going.

Moreover, the average screen time (the time a person spends while seeing or using his mobile phone) has also been on the rise ever since. The greater the smartphone penetration and ease of internet access, the greater is the likelihood to remain glued to your mobile screens.
Furthermore, such has been the pace of technology and mobile adoption around the globe that as per a study, it was reported that an average American spends over 3 hours 13 minutes looking at mobile screens each day. Additionally, they spend roughly 4 hours on their computer screens

Britishers too are not far behind, showing an average of around 6 hours 25 minutes consolidated screen time each day, with mobile screen time nearing around 2 hours 44 minutes. The study found the Philippines to be having the highest mobile screen time nearing around 6 hours each day. Brazilians reported an average mobile screen time of over 5 hours. These facts cum statistics push thinking-to-be-businesses to think of becoming ought-to-be- businesses.

The fact that there is a growing use of the internet and mobile phones and more online presence of consumers worldwide, the time is just opportune to get the ball rolling. If you still spend too much time thinking about starting your online food business, you’ll probably never get it done.

5.3. Going online with your food start up: No more wishing. It is time to make things happen

The use of technology in the food business has become quite mundane. Businesses incapable of effectively using it can be everything, but successful. Given the galloping pace of competition and technological adoptions in the food industry lately, it would be akin to turning a blind eye to our own business prospects if, without embracing technology we continue to engage ourselves in it.

This era of automation and technological amalgamation requires sincere efforts on the part of food businesses. Given the food industry’s growth trends which have chosen technology and automation as their business pivot, the revenues can be big and returns, exceptional. And it is not a big deal if ‘technology-adoption trends by food businesses’ are anything to go by. As per a report published in the year 2020, online on-demand food delivery services are projected to grow by $44.23 billion during the years 2020-2024 in some APAC countries, Europe, North America and South America. The report further mentions the advantage the online food delivery service businesses command owing to their level of market penetration and huge scale of operations.

Moreover, the seamless opportunities that are present in online food business, the challenges that lie ahead and the upcoming trends which may be exploited by prudent and smart business have also been discussed. All this necessitates that the opportunities are plethora in the market for online food businesses, just that the right kind of business initiative, a comprehensive plan keeping in view the products and markets, and its feasible execution can work wonders for established businesses and even for start-ups

What if I say, using technology in your food business can be economically yielding and technically nurturing and as easy as rolling off a log?
The right use of technology has brought a lot of economic and operational respite for businesses ever since. A food business, like any other business, must check upon the following three parameters which ought to be there prior to starting or while defining a business.

  • Customer group:- The target market or those sets of customers who are going to buy your product/service.
  • Customer function:- This answers- What need of that target market does your product/service satisfy?
  • Alternative technology:- The technology or the way through which the needs and wants of the target market will be met.

It is noteworthy that technology serves as a strong basis for a businesses’ growth. In fact, extensive use of the incumbent technology is a strong catalyst for spurring business growth. Food start-ups in order to get ‘foodtechhed’ must willingly learn to adopt it. So how does a food business wanting to start, goes about finding the convenient and right technological process and online platform? How can it unite with a hyperlocal business which can help it have a global presence?

As they say- “The technology you use impresses no one. The experience you create with it is everything.” Holding this adage to be true, we can help your standstill business ideas go online and find the right runway to provide them wings of mettle to fly and soar high. With the ease and convenience our software brings for start-up food businesses, the journey would surely be enthralling and benefitting one so much so that the businesses wouldn’t want to deboard from their business class cabins. Join us and come on board to experience the mesmerising journey that awaits us.

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