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Boosting Revenue: Effective Monetization Options for Restaurants Expanding Online Presence

Based on Statista forecasts, it is projected that by 2027, approximately 2.5 billion individuals will be utilizing food delivery services, representing about 30.8% of the global population. This suggests that approximately one in every three individuals will be placing orders for food through online platforms.

The food delivery industry is expected to generate a total annual revenue of $507.1 billion by 2027
The food delivery industry is expected to generate a total annual revenue of $507.1 billion by 2027

In recent years, the prevailing global trend has been omnichannel, wherein a brand engages with its customers through various sales channels, including offline, websites, applications, and social networks. This trend has had a significant impact on the restaurant industry, particularly evident during the 2020 lockdown. Restaurants that successfully adapted and implemented delivery services were the ones able to survive.

Food delivery is not the only option for restaurants to generate income online. Below, we will offer effective monetization options for restaurants expanding online presence and how they can attract new customers.

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Benefits of a Restaurant Going Online

  1. Expand audience reach: By going online, a restaurant can appeal to customers who are unable to visit the physical location due to factors such as distance or time constraints.
  2. Enhanced competitiveness: In today’s market, having an online presence can be a critical differentiator in the competition for customers, particularly as many consumers prefer the convenience of ordering food for home delivery.
  3. Customer flexibility and convenience: Online ordering offers customers time-saving and effortless options, eliminating the need to physically locate the restaurant, wait in lines, or prepare meals themselves. Customers can select and pay for their orders at their convenience, contributing to improved customer loyalty.
  4. Access to customer feedback: Online platforms enable restaurants to gather and utilize customer reviews to enhance the quality of their services.
  5. Transparent analytics: Online platforms and aggregators compile order information, presenting it in user-friendly reports, allowing restaurants to access valuable analytics for decision-making purposes.

Online Ordering via Delivery Platforms

The most straightforward choice for a restaurant is to collaborate with a food delivery service like UberEats, DoorDash, or GrubHub to deliver food from the restaurant directly to customers’ doors. The service lists the restaurant’s products and dishes available for home delivery. Restaurant staff access a dedicated application where orders placed through the service are shown.


Online Ordering via Restaurant’s Own Ecommerce Platform

Operating its own delivery service gives a restaurant full control over orders, from the kitchen to the customer’s hands. This allows for direct monitoring of dish quality, freshness, and timely delivery, consequently shaping the restaurant’s reputation and fostering trust with customers. This model can be realized through the functionality of an online store or a dedicated showcase on the restaurant’s website.

Pizzeria Pronto
Pizzeria Pronto

A client can visit the website, choose a dish based on visual and descriptive information, and select pickup or delivery. The administrator then reviews the order, confirms details with the client via phone, and subsequently forwards the order to the kitchen.

CS-Cart contains over a dozen delivery add-ons and integrations with external services. This empowers restaurants to exercise full control over delivery operations, including setting different tariff zones, offering free delivery, or disabling delivery for pickups. Additionally, the platform supports the implementation of various loyalty programs, coupons, gift certificates, and promotions.

Meal Kits and Semi-Prepared Food Items for Delivery

Offering semi-prepared food and meal kits for delivery can serve as an extra revenue stream for a restaurant. Recent research indicates a consistent rise in the demand for semi-prepared food. In fact, some studies project that the market for such meals is set to expand at an annual growth rate of 7.5% between 2021 and 2028.

Semi-Prepared Food on Wolt
Semi-Prepared Food on Wolt

A meal kit business model involves delivering pre-portioned ingredients and recipes to customers who want to prepare healthy and easy meals for themselves, families, or coworkers. The business can offer a variety of meal plans, from dietary restrictions like vegan or gluten-free to specific culinary preferences such as Italian or Mexican cuisine. The business likely operates through an online platform where customers can order and track delivery, with the option to customize their meal selections or skip orders if necessary. Meal kit companies often have a subscription model, but one-time purchases are also possible. They usually charge a fee per meal.

Meal kit on Haar at Home
Meal kit on Haar at Home

This approach involves incorporating an additional catalog section in the online store, where customers can add products to their cart and place orders as they normally would. Restaurant staff can then view and process received orders from the administrative panel.

The list of orders in the CS-Cart administration panel
The list of orders in the CS-Cart administration panel

What it should look like online food store to bring in more orders, said our UX/UI designer.

Meal Subscriptions


Provide customers with the opportunity to enroll in a meal plan in which they receive a predetermined number of meals weekly, delivered directly to their doorstep. The Recurring Subscriptions add-on enables clients to subscribe to products and receive regular billing for these products. This subscription model offers a valuable resource: time. Customers save time by automating recurring orders, while the store benefits from loyal customers, aiding in product stock planning. CS-Cart offers the Recurring Subscriptions add-on to facilitate this business model.

Food and Beverages for Takeout

It’s essential to cater to customers who prefer picking up their food and drinks in person. Offering take-out options not only serves as a form of advertising for the restaurant if orders are packaged in branded containers with the logo and contact details, but also provides convenience to customers.

Implementing this is straightforward. In the online store, you simply need to include pickup as a delivery option and provide the necessary pickup address details. By leveraging add-ons in CS-Cart, you can configure Google Maps to display pickup locations in a more user-friendly format.

Booking Tables and Catering Offerings

To streamline order management and reservations at your establishment, consider integrating a reservation system into your online store. This feature is beneficial not only for regular restaurants looking to facilitate table bookings, but also for those specializing in hosting banquets and catering. Additionally, you can utilize the restaurant premises for events, offering all these options in a dedicated section of the online store for swift and easy customer bookings.

It’s essential to provide comprehensive information on prices, terms, and available dates to preempt unnecessary client queries. A booking form and calendar can be designed for visitors’ convenience, ensuring they can swiftly access the required details without searching extensively.

Dynamic price system for rent at different times in Event.top marketplace
Dynamic price system for rent at different times in Event.top marketplace

For Event.top, we devised a timeline system that offers clear, concise visibility into all bookings. This automated calendar populates based on placed orders, streamlining the process and transparently presenting order statistics in the administrative panel. Moreover, the multidimensional price calendar functionality enables the restaurant to implement a flexible pricing strategy based on various factors such as the time of day or day of the week.

Gift Certificates

Restaurant gift certificates serve as an effective method to boost sales and entice new customers. They enable individuals to effortlessly offer gifts to their loved ones, while providing the restaurant with additional revenue.

The Meat & Wine Co
The Meat & Wine Co

The standard edition of CS-Cart features gift certificates and promotional codes.

Branded and Digital Products

In addition to food, the restaurant has the opportunity to sell other products online.

London Tote Bag on Sweet Chick
London Tote Bag on Sweet Chick
  • If the restaurant has established a strong following, there may be a demand for branded merchandise, such as items adorned with the restaurant’s logo. These can serve as promotional tools for the establishment, encouraging customers to revisit for their preferred dishes.
  • If the restaurant offers specialty food and drinks that are suitable for delivery, they can be listed as products in a dedicated section on the website. For instance, the restaurant could offer sweets, jams, and liqueurs for sale.
  • It is also feasible to sell items such as master classes and recipe collections. These products can be showcased on the website like regular goods, and upon purchase, the buyer would receive a link to download or access the file.

With CS-Cart, it is possible to commence the sale of digital products, including master classes, e-books, images, 3D models, online courses, software, music, games, and applications. This presents a cost-effective and straightforward method to generate additional revenue.

Proprietary Mobile App

A proprietary mobile application for a restaurant serves as a convenient platform for engaging with customers and enhancing their loyalty. It facilitates the following capabilities:

  • Swift and convenient ordering for delivery or pickup.
  • Access to the menu, ongoing promotions, and special offers.
  • Capability to leave reviews about the restaurant visit or communicate with the administration.
  • Receipt of notifications regarding new dishes, promotions, and events.
  • Creation of lists comprising favorite dishes and tracking of order history.
  • Ability to leave a tip and evaluate the performance of the server.
Il Sapore mobile app
Il Sapore mobile app

The mobile application can encompass all the features available on the desktop version of the restaurant website.

Key Findings

Operating its own online store enables a restaurant to:

  • Gain independence from food delivery services and avoid paying commissions.
  • Foster customer loyalty and uphold brand reputation.
  • Attract customers and generate revenue around the clock by selling branded products, merchandise, and gift certificates.
  • Build a customer database using their contact details for sending out news and promotions.
  • Expand its business without the expenses of renting and renovating physical premises.
  • Increase profits through the use of a mobile application.

CS-Cart is an ideal solution for realizing various business concepts, including those tailored for restaurants. Connect with us to create a top-notch online store or grocery delivery service.

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Ksenia Cheburova , Cart-Power Editor
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