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Key Functionalities Required for Successful Food Delivery Mobile Apps

Since January 2020, there has been a thirteen-fold increase in the number of users utilizing food delivery services. In recent years, the prevalent trend has been the adoption of food technology mobile applications. These include not only aggregators such as Uber Eats, DoorDash, GrubHub, but also individual food delivery applications tailored to specific restaurants and fast food outlets.

With two-thirds of global purchases being made via mobile devices, having its own mobile application has become a fundamental necessity for any food delivery business. This article will explore the essential functionalities that should be incorporated into a mobile application to ensure a user-friendly experience for both customers and restaurant administrators.

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Who Would Benefit from Having a Mobile App?

Two distinct business types stand to gain valuable convenience and advantages from the mobile application:

  • delivery services, encompassing logistics and transportation companies,
  • companies involved in the catering sector, including restaurants, cafes, sushi bars, and pizzerias.

For detailed insights into how restaurants can generate revenue online, we invite you to explore our article.

Essential Features for Customers

User Account and Registration

It is recommended to complete the registration and authorization process before finalizing the order, particularly after the cart has been filled. Provide the option for users to register using their social media accounts. The registration form should be brief and straightforward.

Enhance Search Functionality

Enhance search capabilities and incorporate convenient filters to enable users to easily locate their preferred restaurants or dishes. Additionally, please consider accommodating special requests such as vegetarian or allergen-free options.

UberEats food delivery app
Here is the section displaying hypoallergenic dishes within the UberEats food delivery app

Attractive Image and Comprehensive Description

The visual element holds significant importance: users first respond to the images and then delve into the description. The preview image should be sizable, visually appealing, and accurately represent the food. The absence of photos significantly diminishes the likelihood of placing an order. In the description, it is advisable to include the ingredients, weight, calorie content, and nutritional details — the more comprehensive, the better, to address any potential user inquiries.

Detailed description in SeeEat app
Detailed description in SeeEat app

Customization Options for Dishes

Delivery services often confine users to predefined meals and packages. If a product contains an undesirable ingredient, the user will likely opt not to place an order. Offer flexible dish customization: the ability to remove unwanted ingredients, add preferred toppings, select the degree of meat doneness, and so on, depending on the restaurant’s specifics.

Extra ingredients in the burger
Extra ingredients in the burger

Order Tracking

Enable users to track their orders in real-time within the app and through push notifications, promoting transparency in the delivery process and alleviating user concerns.

Order Tracking information in real-time
Order Tracking information in real-time

Upfront Delivery Information

Communicate delivery costs and minimum order amounts at an early stage, ensuring users have a clear understanding of the total order cost, including delivery, eligibility for free delivery, and whether the minimum order amount has been reached.

Timely Delivery and Multiple Address Storage

Offer various delivery options, such as expedited delivery or delivery by a specific time, and permit users to save multiple addresses for convenient ordering at different locations, such as home, work, or a friend’s residence, without the need for manual entry each time.

Reviews and Ratings

Incorporate a section for user reviews, ratings, and feedback, allowing for convenient submission. This section serves as a vital source of information for all parties involved, driving service improvement for restaurants based on feedback and aiding users in navigating the breadth of available options. Furthermore, motivating users to explore new dining experiences or eateries is another benefit of these features.

Ratings and reviews within the food delivery application
Ratings and reviews within the food delivery application

Encourage users to rate the app to enhance its ranking on App Store and Google Play, an approach that can be implemented through a post-delivery pop-up window, for instance.

Promotions and Discounts Banners

Highlight enticing offers and promotions through banners on the app’s home page or via push notifications.

UberEats banner
UberEats banner

Chat and Calls

Provide users with the capability to communicate with couriers via chat or phone. This functionality proves useful in scenarios such as delays in delivery or when customers urgently need to manage the delivery location. Additionally, incorporate a chat support feature for order clarification prior to placing an order.

Quick Options

Integrate one-click quick options for users to specify delivery preferences, such as “Leave at the door”, “Meet me on the street”, offering a streamlined approach instead of requiring detailed notes.

Repeat Order

Facilitate the quick repetition of orders through buttons in the user’s personal account or post-delivery.

“Order again” tab in Bolt Food app
“Order again” tab in Bolt Food app

Loyalty Program

Implement a customized loyalty program, considering the unique aspects of your business and user profiles. This approach can contribute to enhanced average spending and foster customer loyalty in your independent delivery application.

In a food delivery app, you can immediately incorporate a loyalty program, similar to what GrubHub has done

Essential Features for Administrators

  • Restaurant Control Panel. If you have an aggregator, the control panel should be straightforward and user-friendly for each restaurant. Restaurants should be able to view incoming orders, accept or decline them, and access all order details specified by the client, including the ability to modify ingredients if needed.
An instance of how restaurant orders are presented within the app
An instance of how restaurant orders are presented within the app
  • Real-Time Notifications. Ensure that notifications are promptly delivered to the restaurant’s end in real time, enabling swift responses to new orders or modifications to existing ones.
  • Menu Management. Empower restaurants to update their menus in real time to prevent inadvertent acceptance of orders for unavailable items.
  • Delivery and Coverage Area Configuration. Grant each restaurant the capability to define its delivery zone and set maximum distance parameters to mitigate issues with couriers.
  • Order Analytics and Reporting. Provide restaurants with accessible and intuitive tools to analyze key metrics through visually engaging formats such as graphs, charts, and summaries. A seamless visualization of statistics fosters restaurants’ confidence and trust in your service.
Restaurant performance metrics within the administrative panel of the application
Restaurant performance metrics within the administrative panel of the application
Sales metrics within the Go-Wholesale application
Sales metrics within the Go-Wholesale application
  • Customer Interaction and Feedback. In instances where direct inquiries are necessary, restaurants should have the capability to promptly contact customers to address inquiries or difficult situations. The most efficient method is through the phone number provided during order placement. For non-urgent queries, establish a centralized message center or incorporate a chat feature within the messenger.
  • Promotional Offers. Empower restaurants to craft and personalize special offers and discounts to drive customer attraction and foster application user growth.

How We Develop an Application

Phase 1: Planning

Initiates with preliminary analysis and project evaluation, involving a comprehensive review of the concept, a brief study of existing business processes and niches, and an evaluation of project complexity by a technical specialist.

Phase 2: Design

Involves outlining business processes and application logic, creating user journey maps, developing prototypes of application pages, and detailing technical specifications.

Phase 3: Development

Entails compiling a backlog of development tasks, planning sprints, and task distribution, designing the application interface, creating application pages for various use cases, developing a cross-platform application from the user’s perspective using React Native, building the Backend API, and integrating servers for data storage and payment gateway.

Phase 4: Testing and Publication

Comprises testing the application and publishing it on Google Play and Apple Store.

Phase 5: Technical Support

Involves ongoing technical support and maintenance of the application.

What Factors Influence the Cost

The expense of creating a mobile food delivery application is contingent on its complexity and unique development requirements. Based on our experience, the initial cost of developing a mobile application starts at 700,000 rubles if a web version is already accessible. This estimate encompasses design development and its integration into the application, minor personalized modifications, and the process of publishing the application on Google Play and Apple Store. If you’re contemplating the development of your own online food store, our UX/UI designer offers guidance on constructing an effective conversion interface.

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Ksenia Cheburova , Cart-Power Editor
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