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Adapt, Expand and Accelerate: 3 Meal Delivery Tips from Lightspeed Restaurateurs

Adapt, Expand and Accelerate: 3 Meal Delivery Tips from Lightspeed Restaurateurs

With social distancing measures reduce restaurant’s service hours, delivery and takeout service has taken on a new level of importance. 

According to Statistica, the market volume for online meal delivery is set to grow to £5,416m by 2024–and that was prior to the surge in restaurants implementing delivery services as a result of COVID-19. But despite the necessity of offering delivery and takeaway, implementing these services from scratch with no previous experience can feel overwhelming for some restaurateurs. 

Which is why we reached out to a few of our customers to see how they’ve handled starting a delivery or takeaway dining service. Learn from their experience, follow their tips and take advantage of 3 free months of Lightspeed’s delivery integration. 

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Norbert Swierad, Operations Manager, Absurd Bird

Key takeaway: Cross-train your staff and adapt your kitchen 

Absurd Bird was able to pivot to delivery by strategically selecting which items to include on their delivery menu. “Choose items that travel well and can be reheated,” says Operations Manager Norbert Swierad. “That way your guests can get your full restaurant experience at home.”

To cut costs and upskill staff, Absurd Bird also cross-trained its existing front of house employees to help handle the new influx of delivery orders. “We selected items that were tasty and exciting, but also didn’t require a huge amount of skills to make,” Norbert continues, “that way we were able to retrain staff quickly.”

Norbert’s last piece of advice would be to adapt your kitchen for delivery. Absurd Bird implemented a Kitchen Display System (KDS) that centralises all incoming delivery orders from aggregators onto a single screen. They also installed a second KDS where the food couriers entered, so they too could get a clear view of which orders were ready for delivery.


Nicholas Steiner, Founder, Yoobi

Key takeaway: Focus on speed

Those who order online do not want to wait longer than an hour for their food, making delivery time a differentiating factor when it comes to beating your competition. According to McKinsey, the duration of the meal delivery is decisive for customer satisfaction, with the optimal delivery time being less than 60 minutes.

Yoobi, a Japanese fusion concept in London, offers fast meal delivery for sushi and handmade temaki to its customers. Founder Nicholas Steiner speaks about the brand’s dedication to an efficient meal delivery service:

“A great customer experience with meal delivery starts with good food, something we are very proud of. However, one of our most important focus points is speed, because customers want their food quickly when ordering online,” says Yoobi founder Nicholas Steiner. “We therefore focus on redesigning our management to prioritise speed and efficiency”.


Ben Ryan, Mamma Dough

Key takeaway: Leverage third-party aggregators and re-price your delivery menu

Using a third-party delivery partner is a quick and efficient way of setting up your own delivery service. South London pizzeria Mamma Dough chose to sell through Deliveroo. “Using a third party delivery aggregator like Deliveroo is a great way to get your business out there,” says Ben Ryan from Mamma Dough. “It helps you reach out to customers that you wouldn’t have reached otherwise and they give you a lot of advertisement too.”

One thing to be mindful of when selling through aggregators is their service fees

UberEats, for example, takes a 15% service fee from an order’s subtotal. While service fees fluctuate from one aggregator to another, one thing is certain: a restaurant’s delivery menu prices should be more expensive than their sit-down menu to assure they turn a profit on each order. When pricing your delivery menu, take the following things into consideration:

  • Cost of Goods Sold (COGS): The total cost of all the ingredients used to make menu items, right down to the garnishes and condiments. 
  • Service fee: The fee charged by the delivery aggregator for providing their service. 
  • Gross profit: The difference in value between the selling price of a dish and the cost of the ingredients and materials used to make a dish. 
  • Net profit: The amount left over from the gross profit after you deduct operating expenses like payroll, rent, utility bills, ingredients, and equipment leasing costs. 

“A restaurant’s delivery menu prices should be more expensive than their sit-down menu to assure they turn a profit on each order”

To effectively leverage third-party aggregators and turn a profit from delivery orders, restaurants need to re-price their delivery menu. Historically, this used to be a manual process; restaurant operators would need to adjust the menu featured on each aggregator one by one. But with Lightspeed Delivery, you can now edit, update and push menus live across all aggregators from one back office. 

An alternative to a third- party aggregator would be setting up a delivery service from scratch, hiring your own drivers and doing your own marketing. It certainly gives you more freedom, and you won’t have to pay commission. But consider the time and money you’d save by having an app do it for you.

Alternatively, products like UEAT helps restaurateurs offer a delivery service commission-free and straight from their website. They only use third-party aggregators to deliver the goods as well as providing the tools to optimise any existing fleet they might have. 


Implement delivery and takeaway service today

The rise of delivery services was already apparent pre-pandemic, but now, it’s relevance is amplified and, as such, it’s adoption has understandably accelerated. 

But there is a right and a wrong way to implement delivery services. Learn from the experiences of restaurant operators who have done it before to assure that you get up and running as quickly as possible, avoid any pitfalls and turn a profit. 

If you want a walkthrough of how to pivot your restaurant and begin offering delivery or takeaway options, contact our team of restaurant experts today; we’re in this together.

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