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Calling All Restaurateurs ‘The Importance of Your Own Ecommerce Platform’ Analysed by Jack Pascoe

In this article I breakdown why selling your services through your own eCommerce website is critical. I’ll examine how one industry leader’s failure to innovate led to its demise. I’ll also look at how you can help your company to stand out in a very competitive market.
  • Regaining Control
  • Brand, Loyalty & Remarketing
  • The bigger they are the harder they fall: Toys “R” US Collapse Years in the making
  • Sustainability: What it takes
You’re here, because YOUR business needs YOU to sell more dishes ONLINE

Let’s say your current business ambition is to grab more Kangaroo-icon market share, generating more revenue. You, and thousands of others just like you, are all striving for the same goal. Current platforms that provide you online solutions for visibility and delivery are working - resulting in revenues. They may feel revolutionary, now, but please do not sit back and get comfortable.
 
INNOVATE It’s crucial you provide your customers with their very own branded eCommerce platform now rather than just relying on the current platforms.

Why, you ask? Well, there are several extremely important factors:

Regaining Control

Brand Control 

Your brand is everything to you – but for the third-party service you are just another customer, a statistic. They want you to rely on them, and they will pretend that they are tuned in to all your needs; while in reality their sales people are tasked with bringing on more restaurants, just like yours, offering extremely similar food, putting you next to your direct competition on an app, and eating into your profit margins all the while, diluting and saturating your market. It is no secret now; anyone can occupy a kitchen and reach a large number of people through these applications.

Data Control

Another important factor for having your own eCommerce platform; you can measure and study your own data to make better informed business decisions. Identifying where your customers, loyal or new, invest their time on your website is crucial to carefully plan for growth. What you believe may be the best dish might not be getting the same coverage on the delivery applications. Businesses need their own data to intelligently understand their own consumers. The information which is fed to you from third party operators is extremely limited: That’s the way they love it. They tell you what they want you to know – not what you need to know.

More importantly, the revenue share percentage is fixed, for now. Have you ever considered that while third party operators have this kind of control you will always lose? They rely on your great food and your hard work and cream off the top. The majority of these Food Applications have taken on huge investment injections to get where they are, and one day soon these investors need to be paid back… do not let this be at the cost of your business.

“CONSIDER WAYS TO PUT YOURSELF OUT OF BUSINESS, BEFORE YOUR FUTURE COMPETITION DOES IT”…

Brand, Loyalty & Remarketing

Leveraging your brand in a crowded market has never been this important.

The beauty of having your own eCommerce platform is that once you regain control
you can maximize it: Harvest loyalty, leverage the brand though providing a level of customer care which makes you stand out from the crowd. Then remarket to those customers.

It has been statistically proven: the more times a customer sees your advert/brand the higher the conversion rate. All the information you now have on your customers will enable you to serve them better.
  • Repeat their orders through your website at a simple click.
  • Email marketing: Inform customers of menu changes, promotions or initiatives the company is undertaking.
  • Remarket: Through social media, EDM, display content which is relevant to them, at the right times, when your customer is hungry, aid their decisions. Loyalty offerings, bring back those customers from the cold, if it has been a while since they ordered, entice them.
All of the above can only be actionable if you are the direct seller of your brand on your own eCommerce website. This is important in the here and now, and will be the making or breaking of restaurants in future.

The  Bigger they are the Harder they Fall: Toys “R” US Collapse years in the making

Toys Bust logo Talking of making and breaking: Toys “R” Us: a company founded in 1948, 1,600 stores worldwide, 64,000 employees, and files for bankruptcy. Lack of innovation from within ultimately led to the downfall of this giant. The sad story goes this way: Toys “R” US enters into golden handshake agreement with Amazon back in 2000, becoming the only supplier of toys on their platform. But by 2003 Amazon initiates sales of toys from other suppliers. Toys R Us files a legal case in 2004 because the golden handshake has turned into a pair of golden handcuffs in the favour of Amazon. Toys “R” Us wins the suit, and Amazon finally pays it $5 1million in 2009. But consider that Amazon sold an estimated $4 billion in toys just last year alone, so let’s call the $51 million pocket change.

Key Takeaways:
  • Consider ways to put yourself out of business, before your future competition does. 
  • Have your own goals, and your own strategy to achieve them.
  • Never become comfortable relying on a third party for your market share, it will only become smaller.

Sustainability : What it Takes

Understanding Your Market

We all understand that the success of the go to online delivery is in the variety it provides. We keep these applications on our phones, at our fingertips because of the continuously updated choices they give us.

How can you grow your market share if your restaurant cannot provide the same kind of novelty and variety?

EASY, reward your customers, remove the choice, foster loyalty programs, have an easy to use website and involve clever marketing tactics to ensure customers return again and again.

Customer retention is incredibly cheaper than customer acquisition. If 50% or more of your orders come from third parties then, well, you are effectively dependant on another company for your sustainability. If these apparent partners were to increase their fees overnight, there goes your profit, growth ideas disappear, your 2-week vacation to the Bahamas.

If you found this article interesting, and believe you need more customers sleeping with you: Complete the form below and I’ll tell you how to do that quickly, efficiently and cost-effectively.

Jack is the Digital Strategist at Grow and his ambition is to provide solid advice to those marketing directors who have been running trial and error campaigns with little success.

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