The Logistics Behind Delivery

One of the hottest trends right now in the restaurant industry is delivery. Many restaurant segments (QSR, fast casual, and casual dining) are beginning to focus on delivery, as more meals than ever before are being enjoyed in homes or places of business.

As reported in QSR recently, 30% of orders for Firehouse Subs locations in South Florida came through third-party, meal delivery.

What’s the take-away?

A major re-think of your entire operation.

Things to Consider

Let’s assume that today’s 30% statistic could eventually mean that half your business is heading out the doors, to be eaten by consumers elsewhere. This will have significant implications for store layout and how you consider a future real estate parcel.

Where do you strategically place your drink machine and condiments, when a dash out the door is likely?

You might devise a different layout for a store location in a suburban shopping center, one designed with many more short-term parking spaces for quick getaways onto major thoroughfares.

What about preparation and packaging? You’re probably going to need to think about containers that travel well.

Accommodating delivery will also affect staffing; with driver employees or coordination with third-party delivery services.  Should you build your own delivery infrastructure and capture the delivery fee? Consider that many of the new delivery firms will be well-capitalized with private equity and venture backing. Do you use six delivery partners, or will you have to accommodate every new delivery service that has drivers on the road?

What impact will this have on revenue? Will the average guest check size be larger due to delivery? If so, can you convert that to profitability?

How will this impact your marketing efforts? Should there be a discount for an off-premise meal? How will you tie this into your existing customer loyalty program?

Adherence to food safety and quality will be even more critical. How will your restaurant ensure you are remaining compliant and satisfying customers?

As your restaurant begins to adopt and welcome delivery, whether it be in-house, or through third-party delivery services, one thing is certain: Delivery is a HUGE opportunity for your operation! Don’t miss out!