As social distancing becomes more prevalent, many restaurants and cafes are beginning to offer takeaway and food delivery services for the first time. Here are our tips for getting takeaway and food delivery right.
We’re in the midst of an unprecedented health crisis right now with Coronavirus impacting many both personally and professionally. As social distancing becomes more prevalent, many restaurants and cafes are beginning to offer takeaway and food delivery services for the first time. If you are new to take away, then we hope the below offers some valued insight and helps you get started...
1. Focus on your hero meals or products
When moving to offer takeaway, put your focus on your hero meals or products. Right now, fan favourites and your specialities will be the core of your business. Ensure the packaging for these is as perfect as can be.
2. Make takeaway and delivery an extension of your brand
Takeaway packaging offers an opportunity to promote your brand. Maximise this opportunity by making sure the food packaging reflects this. By way of example, if you’re a modern, high-end bistro opt for a contemporary aesthetic. Comparatively, if you're a health, organic or vegan focused food operator, continue that feel with more environmentally friendly packaging, like sugarcane (bagasse) or kraft material.
3. Pack your bag for safe delivery
It can be tempting to think about your delivery bag right away as it’s the first thing your customers see, but you need to know what ranges and sizes you’re using before choosing the bag and need to remember the importance of packing the bag so your dishes are protected in transit. Split hot foods and cold foods into separate bags and always pack the largest and heaviest food packaging items on the bottom so that your dishes arrive at their end-destination just as they left your kitchen.
4. Increase the order value
When people are ordering takeaway food they need to get everything all at once. This offers a great opportunity to increase order value with special offers to get more items in the order. A common mistake often made, is to increase the item value rather than focus on overall basket value - keep your prices equal to eating in, and use promotions to increase the size of the prize; not only will this keep your customers happy, but it will also increase your margins.
5. Label your dishes
No customer likes hanging around trying to work out whose is whose, they want to dive in and not wait until the food is cold. Labelling your dishes is a simple way to create a seamless customer experience. Either write on the packaging or get generic labels to tick which takeaway container holds each meal.
6. Remember the environment
Keep your food delivery service as sustainable as possible by cutting down on conventional plastic and using planet-friendly packaging. Bagasse (sugarcane) is a great packaging product to use for food delivery and is home compostable and recyclable (when clean). An environmental message will resonate strongly with your customers, making your brand a guilt-free choice for takeaway food.
7. TEST TEST TEST!!
Whilst the packaging might be a perfect size and look, this is not the most important aspect. Be thorough with testing, put the food in, close it, leave it for half an hour, put in a bag and walk around the block, drive around if you want to. The packaging you use must be robust and insulating enough to ensure your food arrives in tip-top shape with the customer.
1. Going overboard
Rather than buying a different type of packaging for each dish, keep things simple by picking a couple of lines for your core range and offer sides and desserts in standard-sized pots or containers.
2. Using clip-on lids for drinks
Nothing is worse than getting a meal where the drink has leaked over everything. While clip-on lids are relatively leak-proof, they are not designed for transport. Opt for bottles instead as they are tamper-proof, secure and totally leak-proof.
3. Mixing and matching
Inconsistencies can reflect poorly on your brand and make for a sub-par delivery experience. Avoid mixing and matching container colours and lid types. Instead, create a family of packaging and make sure the range and product style all match or complement each other.
4. Cutting corners
Whilst we understand the need to keep costs down, you will lose business in the long run if food arrives in poor quality or cold. Save on costs by choosing your packaging wisely. Use the same size of box for a number of meals or opt for compartment containers rather than using two items of packaging.