This page is meant to be a resource for our customers and restaurants in general to help you get through the COVID-19 pandemic. We will continue to update this page as we have more information and ideas. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to share any actions you have taken or discuss anything else with us.
Communicating with customers
It’s a tough time for consumers and restaurants. No matter whether the news is good or bad, loyal guests will appreciate hearing from you. Based on what we’ve seen our customers and other restaurants in the industry doing, we feel a little honesty, empathy and caring will go a long way. Here are some of our (admittedly unscientific!) recommendations on how you could communicate with your customers.
If you’re temporarily closing
Communicate why (e.g. for customer and team safety, or even a drastic reduction in business), and how long (“We don’t know” is okay, along with a promise to keep customers updated). End on a positive note – we could all use a little cheer during this difficult time!
If you’re remaining open
Explain the steps that you’re taking to ensure cleanliness, any new updates you’re rolling out (e.g. “We now offer contactless local delivery”), appreciation of your guests and how important their patronage is to your business and your employees at this time.
Takeout, Delivery or both?
Both takeout and delivery can help drive more business and it may be prudent to offer both. You could consider having your guests line up outside (weather permitting) for takeout to reduce exposure for both your employees and your guests (and potentially complying with regulations regarding gatherings of individuals). However, keep in mind that this may introduce some operational overhead.
With takeout, offering a curbside option is a great way to provide your guests more options and help them chose the level of interaction they want with your staff. We offer some great curbside pickup features that you can check out here.
White Label Delivery
Incentivio is partnered with Doordash for white label delivery. Incentivio is waiving our fee for this integration ($0.50 per order) through June 30th, 2020. Doordash charges a fixed fee of $7.50 + tips per delivery. While this may seem higher than the commission you pay now, keep in mind that a typical marketplace transaction charges the restaurant 25% and the customer an additional delivery fee. In most cases this will add up to more than the white label delivery fee. The Incentivio platform allows you to control how much of the cost is passed on to the customer, and also lets you set order minimums for delivery. See here for more details on Incentivio’s delivery options.
Contactless delivery options are being rolled out across the nation by brands large and small. These are order-level delivery instructions – “Leave at the door and ring the bell”, “Call me and leave it outside, etc”. Incentivio allows for order-level special instructions to be entered by the guest as long as your Point of Sale system supports them. You may want to send a message through the Incentivio Portal that lets your customers know how they can opt for contactless delivery.
Incentivio’s ordering options feature makes setting up contactless delivery a breeze.
Tableside ordering can help speed up operations while offering your guests a way to minimize staff contact. It’s as easy as scanning a code at the table to start an order, or just starting an order on the mobile app. This is increasingly relevant during pandemic restrictions. Find out how you can integrate tableside ordering into your restaurant here.
Third Party Delivery Marketplaces?
Some of the larger marketplaces have implemented programs that provide temporary relief from commissions so it may be a financially viable channel to gain more business. However, we encourage you to review and verify these terms on your contract before you move forward as these new benefits don’t necessarily apply to all restaurants.
- Doordash – “Beginning March 17, independent restaurants in the United States, Canada, Puerto Rico, and Australia can sign up for free with DoorDash and Caviar and pay zero commissions for 30 days” (source). You can get started here.
- Uber Eats – has “waived the Delivery Fee for the more than 100,000 independent restaurants across US & Canada on Uber Eats” (source). You can get started here.
- Grubhub – announced it is “temporarily suspending collection of up to $100 million in commission payments from impacted independent restaurants nationwide” (source). You can get started here.
This section contains links to articles that we have come across that may be of interest to you: