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16 November, 2021

How to Make a Food Delivery Website: Steps, Tips, Costs

In 2021, food delivery is a must-have option for any restaurant business. If you create such a service anew, you should know the main steps that will guide you through the process. Read the article and learn the basics of creating a food delivery website.

Mitya Smusin

Chief Executive Officer

It would be an understatement to say that food delivery has become an inseparable part of our daily life. You can get almost everything delivered to your doorstep, from pizza and burgers to the fanciest meals of a Michelin restaurant. That’s why more and more businesses wonder how to make an online food delivery website. It’s a profitable feature that is extremely demandable today.

A delivery website will increase customer satisfaction and open new opportunities to attract clients. In this article, we discuss the benefits of the food delivery feature and the strategy of creating a dedicated website.

Top online food delivery sites

Analyzing the competitors is one of the most crucial steps you need to take before starting the development. It will help you understand the market, learn the strengths of the existing apps, and see their weaknesses.

  • Uber Eats

Uber is an American mobility-as-a-service provider that offers clients a wide range of transportation services, from taxi to ferry transport. It’s not a surprise that the company launched a food ordering platform. Uber Eats was founded in 2014 and now works in more than 1,000 cities around the world. The platform allows users to search for local restaurants and order food from them. 

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  • Deliveroo

This London-based company operates in more than 200 cities in several countries. The app charges both customers and businesses for the services. Deliveroo has a wide range of restaurants and meals that are arranged into categories such as “Comfort food,” “Healthy” and “Desserts and sweet dishes.” The platform also has a scheduled-delivery feature: You can make an order up to 24 hours in advance.

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  • FoodPanda

FoodPanda is one of the strongest players on the market. The service was founded in Germany in 2013, and today it's available in more than 40 countries and lists around 30,000 restaurants, bars, and coffee shops. To meet users’ needs, FoodPanda can place orders via iOS, Android, or the company's website.

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  • Applebee’s

This restaurant was founded in Atlanta, Georgia, in 1980. Since then, it has become one of the most popular bar-and-grill chains in the USA. They also serve in several other countries around the world, including Canada, Guatemala, and the United Arab Emirates. Applebee’s focuses on casual meals and popular American dishes. In addition to direct ordering, their website offers discounts, gift cards, and even catering services.

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  • Pizza Hut

Pizza Hut is an international franchise of pizza restaurants founded in the USA that provides its clients with pizza and other Italian-American dishes. They have separate localized websites for each country where clients can find the relevant menu, prices, and marketing campaigns like coupons and special events. The number of Pizza Hut’s restaurants is already more than 18,000 which makes it the largest pizza chain in the world. However, the next company has recently claimed this title.

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  • Domino’s

Here comes the biggest rival of Pizza Hut. The first restaurant of Domino’s Pizza was founded in 1960 in Michigan. In 2021, it will become the largest pizza chain that is active worldwide. In addition to pizza, Domino’s offers pasta, fried chicken wings, sandwiches, and desserts. They also have specific delivery websites for every country where they receive orders and post the necessary information.

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The main types of food delivery services

Depending on how the food delivery services are functioning, we can divide them into two main types: platforms for multiple restaurants and custom solutions. 

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1. A platform works with multiple restaurants, lists them on the website, and allows users to order from them. So, it functions as a mediator that gives restaurants and their customers a way to transact.

Another method is to organize a directory and combine it with your delivery service. The restaurants will get listed on the website and you will provide them with your delivery people. It helps businesses deliver the meals without hiring more people or having to set up a new process.

2. The second type of food delivery website is a custom native solution in which the site is dedicated to one restaurant. Applebee’s, Pizza Hut, and Domino’s offer good examples of such websites. Each focuses on one menu and has a well-organized delivery network. 

Regardless of the type of website, it’s a good idea to create one. So, let’s discuss the benefits it can have for your business. 

The benefits of an online-ordering website 

It may seem that, with the market being almost overwhelmed with competitors, there is no use in wasting time and money on another food delivery solution. However, arranging a website dedicated to online orders and food delivery service has a lot of benefits that will positively affect your business.

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  • Acquiring new customers

When you go online, you open an enormous number of opportunities to attract new customers. In addition to visitors of an offline venue, you now have the whole city or region as your potential clientele. Customers are more likely to find information about your restaurant on the internet, so they will definitely appear on your website.

  • Making more money

More customers usually mean more revenue. In 2019, restaurants reportedly got from 11 to 20 percent increase in sales. Taking into account the pandemic restrictions we have, the possible profit will rise even more. Moreover, customers will be happy to find the possibility to make an online order and get their meals delivered.

  • Collecting the necessary data

A website will help you gather the necessary information about your customers and then personalize your marketing campaigns.

  • Increasing online visibility

As we already mentioned, the Internet is a door to new market opportunities. Social media work well in building up your online presence, however, it’s not the most profitable way to do it. On your delivery website, you can inform your customer about ongoing discounts, special offers, or new menu items. 

Despite all the efforts that you have to put into arranging the delivery service and creating a dedicated website, it will definitely pay off in the long run. Now, let’s get down to the most important features your food delivery website should have.

Features of the food ordering system

Even though both types of ordering websites for restaurants have their differences, the core functionality remains the same. The features we are about to mention will ensure that your website will address the most common customers’ needs.

Basic features

Here is the core of any food ordering platform.

  • Creating a profile: A profile will save users’ delivery addresses and give you the opportunity to personalize their experience. At the same time, they should be able to make orders without registration.

  • Menu: All meals and restaurants should be filtered by their types, have detailed descriptions, and be accompanied by nice-looking images. 

  • Call-to-action: The most common CTA is “Add to cart,” so at the end the customer can see everything they want to order in one place.

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  • Shopping cart: The customer should have a clear understanding of what they added to the cart, how much they are going to pay and where to find the order form to enter the necessary data.

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  • Online payments: The most important metric of online payment is its security, so you should pay extreme attention to it.

  • Order managing: Your employees should have access to the list of orders and their statuses.

  • Contacts and social media: If a customer wants to contact you via phone, Twitter, or Instagram, they should be able to find the links to profiles and relevant phone numbers.

  • Mobile optimization: More and more people are using mobile devices to complete tasks including food ordering.

Advanced features

If you want to go to the next level, implement the following features:

  • Multi-language interface and support: This feature is a must if you want to go global. 

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  • Chat: You can implement a chat window on the website for customers to ask questions and give you instant feedback.

  • Coupons: If your restaurant provides customers with discount coupons, they should be able to use them while ordering online.

Build a website with online ordering: Main steps

We know the types, benefits, and features of a good food delivery website. Now we can arrange all the information into a well-structured strategy. It will help you to learn how to make a website like Zomato and create a clear vision of the final solution. Additionally, your team will stay on track during the development.

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Step 1: Choose the type

The first thing you have to define is whether you are going to build a website for your business only or an aggregator that contains a lot of restaurants. The main features are the same for both types but the background processes and preparations will be completely different.

Step 2: Find your niche

For an online ordering solution, just as for any online project, it’s better to start with a smaller area and then expand gradually. To define this area accurately, you should pay attention to the three most important factors:

  • Region

  • Type of cuisine

  • Target audience

When you define what region you want to cover, what meals you will deliver, and what your potential customers should look like, you can move forward.

Step 3: Analyze the competitors

There is a high chance that you aren’t the only one in the niche you defined. Once the previous step is complete, you should look at the competitors who work under the same conditions. It will help you understand what options are already on the market, what they offer, and what they lack.

Step 4: Hire a development team

When you have an organized vision in your mind, you can start searching for a dedicated team who can help you create the website. You should pay attention to the agency’s experiences, areas of expertise, and hourly rate. Moreover, it’s important to have good communication and similar values with the team to prevent conflicts and misunderstandings. 

Step 5: Design the website

The team has received your specifications, so now you can work on the website’s design. The best way to start is to draw wireframes. They will help you understand how core functions will work and where the main parts are located on the page. The main goal here is to make navigation as easy and intuitive as possible.

When it comes to visuals, be sure to match your website with your brand image. It will help customers create a consistent picture of your business and identify you easier.

Step 6: Develop the solution

The time has come for the technical part. When wireframes are finished and the team knows what to do, they can start coding. The precise stack of technologies will depend on the project’s specifications and requirements. Additionally, you can rely on your team’s experience and go with the tools they offer.

Step 7: Release and maintain

Your website is available online, but the work isn’t over yet. After the release, the ongoing process of bug fixing and updating starts. Be sure to respond to your users’ feedback and fill the pages with relevant information.

What else do you need to pay attention to? 

We explained the main requirements and specifications for the development of a food delivery website. With this strategy, you and your team can ensure that the final solution will be stable and efficient. However, there are some tips and points that will level up your platform. Here is what you need to consider:

  • Be simple and transparent. Users should easily navigate around your website. If something confuses or irritates them, it’s better to get rid of it.

  • Make it responsive. 80% of customers use mobile devices to make orders. So if you don’t want to create a mobile app for food delivery, you should implement a responsive web design.

  • Pay attention to SEO. Your website should be filled in with SEO-friendly content so the search engines will find you with ease and put you at top positions.

  • Use a CMS. A content management system will help you effortlessly add, edit and manage the content on your website. We advise you to opt for a headless CMS, though, because it will allow people with minimal technical knowledge to update and edit your website.

  • High-quality photos are important. Hire a food photographer so they can arrange a professional photo shoot for your meals.

  • Monitor the reviews. Reviews and ratings are some of the most influential factors for a client of a restaurant. Be sure to analyze the feedback and address all the arising issues.

  • Update on time. The menu and prices shouldn’t differ from the one you serve at the tables in the restaurant.

These tips will help you build a top-notch, competitive food delivery service.

How you can earn money with an online-ordering website

There are several ways for a food delivery website to help you make money. You can use one or choose several of them to maximize efficiency.

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  • Accepting orders

It sounds quite obvious: If you build a delivery website for your restaurant, the main way of getting revenue out of it is to accept orders and deliver the food to a customer. The tips we described above will make the process clear and easy.

  • Third-party advertising

While creating the website’s layout, think about some spaces for advertising banners. You can use them to promote your services or give them to other businesses and agencies for a certain fee.

  • Commission for restaurants

If you choose to create a platform that lists multiple restaurants, you can charge a commission for placement on the list. You can also use various plans with different perks, such as the privilege of higher placement, additional profile customization options, on-site ads, and more sophisticated analytics.

The cost to develop a food delivery website 

The cost of website development will depend on a range of variables. For an online-ordering website, the most influential factors will be the specifications, project’s deadline, and the hourly rate of the team you hire. That’s why it’s difficult to name the required budget and number of specialists straight away. 

For a web project that will include the above-mentioned features, the necessary team composition will include:

  • Project manager

  • Frontend engineer

  • Backend engineer

  • UI/UX design

  • QA engineer

Speaking about an average time estimation for such a project, it can take about two-three months to have a food delivery website prepared for the first release. Then, post-release work will begin and it will be an ongoing process.

If we take into account the time needed for the development, the average cost of creating such a website will be about $30,000—$40,000.

Summary 

Creating a website for food delivery is an advantageous decision a restaurant business can make. It will help you stay afloat in today’s competitive market. A good-looking and user-friendly website will easily skyrocket your sales and contribute to your brand image. 

When your website is released, pay attention to the feedback it receives and update it accordingly. Additionally, don’t forget to keep the website in accordance with your menu and marketing campaigns.

If you want to be sure that your food delivery solution will reach the target audience and successfully occupy the right niche, feel free to contact our specialists. We will consult you on the development and provide you with a detailed project estimate.

🍕 What are the types of food delivery websites?

There are two types of food delivery websites: Aggregators that work with multiple venues and custom websites for one brand.

🍕 Why is a food delivery website necessary?

It will help your business reach a broader audience and generate more income.

🍕 What are the necessary features for a food delivery website?

Your website should have a menu, clear call-to-actions, a shopping cart, safe online payments, a page with contacts, a multi-language interface, and mobile optimization.

🍕 How much does it cost to develop a food delivery website?

If we take into account the time needed for the development, the average cost of creating such a website will be about $30,000—$40,000.

Tags
How-to
Food delivery
Web development

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