In our busy world, many of your guests don’t have time to cook, much less sit down at a restaurant. That’s why restaurant delivery is taking off. As of April 2018, 86% of consumers were using delivery at least monthly. This percentage was predicted to grow over the year by as much as 12%.

So how can you capitalize on this booming trend? Businesses around the country – and around the world – are finding innovative ways to connect with guests from afar. Here are the top 3 most exciting ways that restaurants are boosting delivery.

 

1. Personalization

Your guests like to feel welcome. Any indication that you care about their experience of eating your cuisine – in store or at home – reminds them that they matter to you. Use your Point of Sale system to track their names, addresses, phone numbers, and order history. Whether they’re placing an order on your website, through a third-party app like GrubHub, or by calling in directly, technology can empower your hosts to offer them their favorite dishes. You can even use predictive technology to offer them menu items they might like – if they usually order mac and cheese, why not upsell your seasonal special version of the same dish?

 

2. Apps

Many restaurants are having success with proprietary apps that connect with guests directly through their phones. These apps allow you to not only track their preferences, but also to send them push notifications about any special deals or LTOs you’re currently running. You can even offer incentives to encourage them to use the app more often. For instance, they might share a screenshot of their order to get a free dessert, or order 10 times in a month to receive a discount.

 

3. Delivery Bots

Some restaurants are taking delivery to the next level by mobilizing fleets of delivery robots. This is especially popular with pizza chains, like Domino’s and Zume Pizza, which are using robots to deliver fresh, hot pies directly to guests’ homes. This technology is still developing – which means it may not be affordable for independent restaurants quite yet. Whatever delivery method you use, however, it’s important to stay informed about the best options for keeping it fresh in transit. Whether you use eco-friendly containers or special bags to keep food warm, make sure your food looks and tastes its best by the time it arrives at a guest’s home.

 

As delivery becomes more popular among customers, restaurants are racing to find the best ways to compete for this market share of diners. It’s increasingly important that you offer several options for hungry guests to order your food. The simpler the process is for them, the more often they’ll frequent your business.