12 February 20217 minute read

Why Every Food Business Needs Meal Delivery Software

restaurant meal delivery software

Discover how Circuit for Teams can transform your delivery management with real-time tracking, route optimization, and seamless integrations.

Customers have high expectations when it comes to getting their orders as quickly as possible for as cheap as possible. Between on-demand delivery options and low shipping prices, eCommerce companies have a lot of competition.

But they aren’t the only ones feeling the challenge of managing delivery orders in the age of the Amazon Effect. If you’re in the restaurant business and delivering pre-prepared meals to homes using an online ordering system, you know what I’m talking about.

Ever tried organizing online food ordering with manual calculations or different apps? Maybe it worked when you started, but as orders ramped up, things got messy.

Good news! The right restaurant delivery software can simplify all that.

In this piece, I’ll show you why in-house food delivery software beats third-party food delivery platforms like Uber Eats, Grubhub, Toast, and Doordash, which businesses get the most from in-house delivery software, and how the right software solution can uncomplicate your delivery operations and boost your profits.

Key takeaways

  • While they might seem convenient, third-party delivery services can be costly, erode your direct relationship with customers, and put your business reputation at risk.
  • Dedicated in-house food delivery software offers an all-in-one tool for order management and delivery efficiency and improves customer satisfaction, giving you a competitive edge.
  • Restaurants like Sanjhi Rasoi and Company Bakery have experienced significant growth and operational improvements by leveraging food delivery software.
  • The best food delivery software offers features like route optimization, real-time driver tracking, and proof of delivery, streamlining your operations and boosting the customer experience.
Circuit for Teams is a simple software for optimizing routes with multiple drivers. Click here to start your free 14-day trial.

The problem with third-party services

Third-party services might seem convenient for streamlining online ordering, but they can be costly. Plus, you lose that personal touch with your customers. 

Organizing your own deliveries with different tools can also get overwhelming quickly.

Ever had your delivery drivers crisscrossing the city? That’s time, effort, and money wasted. It’s stressful for you, and your customers notice the delays. 

Worst of all, your hard-earned reputation is at stake.

Those are just some of the reasons that, while it might seem more convenient, relying on third-party delivery options like Uber Eats and Grubhub comes with a whole set of challenges.

Some examples include:

Loss of control: The unpredictable nature of third-party drivers 

When you hand over your food to third-party drivers, you’re essentially giving up control over the delivery process. 

For instance, if a driver decides to take a longer route or makes multiple stops before delivering your food, there’s not much you can do. This can lead to cold food, late deliveries, and unhappy customers. 

Remember that time when a customer complained about a late delivery, even though the food was prepared on time? That’s the unpredictability you’re dealing with.

High fees: The hidden costs of convenience 

While these platforms might bring in more orders, they also take a hefty cut from each sale — sometimes 15-30%! A $20 order might see up to $5 or more going to the platform. 

Over time, these fees can eat into your profits. Your customers don’t want to foot the bill for that with sky-high delivery fees. 

Think about it: if you get 100 orders a week, you might be losing out on $500 or more. That’s a big chunk that could have been reinvested into your business.

Customer experience: Your reputation, their rules 

Any issues with the delivery, and guess who the customer blames? You, not the third-party service. 

Let’s say a new customer didn’t get their food because the driver couldn’t find their address. Even though it’s not directly your fault, your business takes the hit in terms of negative reviews and lost customer loyalty. 

It’s like that one-star review you got last month because of a delivery mishap that was out of your hands. 

Promotion of competitors: A crowded marketplace 

When customers order from these platforms, they see a list of all available restaurants, including your competitors. So, while they might have initially thought of ordering from you, a discount or promotion from another restaurant could easily sway them. 

It’s like walking into a mall to visit one specific store but getting distracted by all the other shiny options around. Before you know it, your loyal customer might just become someone else’s regular.

Picture showing healthy meal

The power of food delivery software

Switching to an in-house food delivery software gives you back control and offers a slew of benefits tailored to make your operations smoother. Here’s what you can expect:

Everything at your fingertips 

With the right food delivery software, you can bring together all your scattered tools into one unified platform. No more switching between apps or wasting time on manual tasks. 

Everything you need — from route optimization to real-time tracking — is consolidated into one place where you can get it all done. 

Efficient, timely deliveries 

Imagine the time you can save when your ordering system, delivery tracking, and customer notifications are all integrated. Automating these processes means fewer errors and faster deliveries. 

And we all know that in the food business, speed and accuracy are everything.

Happier customers 

Your customers don’t see the behind-the-scenes operations. They only see the end result: their food arriving hot and on time. 

With streamlined operations, you can guarantee quicker delivery times and real-time updates, leading to happier customers. And happy customers are repeat customers!

A leg up on the competition 

In the competitive world of food delivery, having the edge makes all the difference. While others are struggling with manual processes or disjointed systems, you’ll be ahead of the curve, leveraging the power of advanced food delivery software to grow your business.

A solution that grows with you 

The beauty of a comprehensive software solution is scalability: the power to adapt to your growing business. As your business grows, your delivery management software can adapt, so you always have the tools you need to succeed.

Real stories: How meal delivery software helps food businesses grow

Every business has its unique challenges, but one thing remains consistent: the need for efficiency and growth. 

Let’s get into some real-life examples to see how it can transform different operations and lead to significant growth.

Sanjhi Rasoi’s route planning transformation 

Sanjhi Rasoi, a popular restaurant, faced growing pains as the demand for its Indian meal delivery service surged. Saghar Dhaliwal, the restaurant owner, found himself spending hours every morning figuring out the best routes for his 4-5 delivery drivers. 

It was a time-consuming and often frustrating process. But with the introduction of delivery software, things took a turn for the better:

  • Efficiency in route planning. What used to take hours was reduced to mere minutes. The software’s route optimization feature made sure drivers took the most efficient routes, saving time and fuel.
  • Reduction in redeliveries. The proof of delivery feature confirmed successful deliveries, bringing down the costly redeliveries to zero.
  • Happier drivers. Payment disputes decreased as drivers were compensated for every hour worked, not just per route. This change led to a more harmonious work environment and reduced friction among the team.
  • Cost savings. With all these improvements, Saghar estimates a monthly saving of at least $3,500 in additional salaries.

Thanks to the right delivery software, Sanjhi Rasoi transformed its delivery challenges into significant savings and a happier team.

Company Bakery’s shift from B2B to direct-to-consumer 

Company Bakery, known for its fresh sourdough bread in Edinburgh, Scotland, was primarily a B2B wholesaler. But when COVID-19 disrupted their regular clientele of restaurants and cafes, Ben Reade, the leader, had to think fast. 

The vision: Transition to a direct-to-consumer model with a delivery system that gets bread straight to customers’ homes.

The shift brought its challenges, especially with the surge in individual deliveries. But the introduction of food delivery management software streamlined their operations:

  • Efficient route planning. With the software, planning routes became a breeze. What once took hours was now done in minutes, and drivers took the most efficient routes.
  • Area-based deliveries. Orders were organized by delivery zones to manage costs. For instance, southwest Edinburgh got deliveries on Mondays, while northwest Edinburgh had theirs on Sundays.
  • Reduction in redeliveries. The software’s proof of delivery feature minimized delivery disputes and reduced redeliveries.
  • Sustainable business model. The direct-to-consumer approach became a lifeline, and even as the world returns to normal, Ben sees it as a vital revenue stream.

The software helped Company Bakery survive the pandemic, and it paved the way for a new, sustainable business model. Incredible stuff!

Easily optimize routes within Circuit (GIF showing Monday deliveries within the platform)

How to choose the right food delivery software

The hardest part might be picking the best option for your business. But that’s why I’m here to help!

Look for these key functionalities of top-notch delivery software:

  • Route optimization. Smart algorithms find the best route so you can prioritize certain stops and plan routes based on things like delivery zones. That way, you can organize deliveries for specific days (like Company Bakery does).  
  • GPS navigation. Drivers can use their favorite map apps and always stick to the right path.
  • Driver tracking. Monitor each driver’s location in real time and adjust routes on-the-fly if needed.
  • Customer notifications. Keep your customers informed about delivery times.
  • Proof of delivery. Protect against delivery disputes with photo captures or e-signatures.
  • Manage multiple drivers. Good software helps you manage a team of drivers, considering vehicle sizes and capacities.
  • API integration. This lets you connect with other tools and software you already use.
  • Point of sale (POS). This ties in with your sales system, making order processing a breeze.

By investing in comprehensive food delivery software, you’re not just streamlining your operations; you’re enhancing the customer experience, protecting your business reputation, and setting yourself up for success. 

Putting it all on the table: The final scoop on food delivery software

Food delivery can feel like a maze, especially when you’re juggling third-party services. But it pulls all your tools into one place, makes things run smoother, and keeps your customers smiling. 

Now, if you need route planning, real-time tracking, and a way to keep your customers in the loop, Circuit for Teams might be the delivery solution for you. 

It comes with a user-friendly mobile app available on both Android and iOS, gives you great customer support, and even lets you get proof of delivery and automate customer notifications via SMS. For an added bonus, the simple, straightforward pricing plans aren’t hiding anything.

Pretty neat, huh?

The food delivery business is about giving customers an experience they’ll love so much they can’t wait to order again. That’s what Circuit for Teams can do — but only if you try it out. 

So, sign up for a 14-day free trial of Circuit for Teams today, and see the difference for yourself.

About the author

Catarina AleixoContributor

Catarina is a freelance writer and journalist based in Lisbon, Portugal. She loves helping businesses and brands communicate their messages. You can find Catarina her on LinkedIn.


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Logistics map interface showing the New York afternoon delivery run with route lines and list of addresses