Step outside your house and walk a few seconds down the street and it won’t be long till you see a Deliveroo or Uber Eats pushbike shooting down the road onto its next drop off. Delivery-services for restaurant-food is BIG business. But what are the benefits of sigining up to these companies? And what effect is it having on business?
For some, it’s a great way to earn money before customers have even stepped through the door. Preeya Khagram-Nasim, co-owner of Chuck Burgers in Spitalfields, explains “our best days are when we’ve sold 80 burgers by 11.45am through the delivery service - our doors then open at 12pm for restaurant customers. Having a small burger restaurant partnered with a delivery company means we now have a lot of days like this and its great.”
For others, like Arlo’s in Balham, delivering restaurant quality food to residents who don’t always want to leave their homes is proving a great addition to the business. Owner Tom McNeile tells us..
“The idea behind Arlo’s is focussed on the lesser-known butcher’s cuts at excellent value – the goal being to make the idea of “grabbing” a steak more of an everyday possibility – like a pizza or burger. I wanted to take steak into the mainstream takeaway/delivery market, as our cooking method preserves the high quality that you’d expect when you eat in at Arlo’s. Deliveroo and UberEats allow us to do this effortlessly - their service is rapid, high quality and offered at a very reasonable cost and thus allows Arlo’s to serve more customers whenever and wherever they feel the urge. They add value in that they expand our potential covers, and without impacting on the clients who chose to eat in at Arlo’s."
It isn't all plain sailing however. A common gripe, usually expressed on Twitter, is food items being left off orders or food arriving cold. Yard Sale Pizza, now with three sites around London, have chosen to counteract this problem by dealing with all deliveries themselves.
"It's really important to us that we can deliver quality from dough to door..." co-owner Dan Spinney tell us. "We choose to use the best quality ingredients to create our pizza so it's only fitting that we assure that quality in the delivery. We spent a lot of time perfecting the delivery through testing and training and as such our drivers are very much part of our wider team rather than just pizza couriers!"
Either way, it makes sense for restaurants to offer the same quality of cooking they do in their dining rooms in someone’s living room. Take Ben Jones, co-founder of lifestyle blog London on the Inside, who uses these services numerous times a week. “UberEATS gives us time back. We can order something before leaving the office and have it arrive for when we get back home…it’s the little wins!” With people having less and less time to cook these days, delivery services are proving genuinely useful.
JKS restaurants, they own Gymkhana, Trishna and Hoppers, while being investors in Bubbledogs, Bao and Lyle’s, have just opened their third Motu – an Indian delivery service operating solely through Deliveroo. Each site has no front of house staff, no high costs of running a restaurant, just the kitchen and its team. This is clearly a great business model – one I’m sure we’ll see plenty of other restaurants adopting in 2017.