Why food delivery companies must focus on personalization

With takeaway companies reporting a year-on-year order growth of 25-50%, it would seem the busy millennial has little appetite to cook, and why should they?

With a few taps and swipes, you can have whatever food your heart and stomach desires on the doorstep within the hour. Easy and quick food delivery is a commodity we have come to expect, much like streaming our favourite series on Netflix or ordering a taxi from Uber.

Identified as one of the most disruptive industries of 2016, food delivery seems to be cultivating a stream of new and inventive services. Enter UberEats — the customer experience giant’s food delivery app which lets users to link their Uber account and order food from a selection of local restaurants.

Though entering a market which is far from the arguably greenfield sector Uber originally dominated, we are forced to ask what this will mean for the food delivery industry. With an already established brand known for revolutionizing an industry whilst providing exceptional customer service - how can others in the industry keep up and gain a competitive edge?

Ensuring personalization plays the lead role in shaping the experience is key to keeping customers.

Knowing food preferences, previous selections, weather variations, previous feedback and review scores is critical in building a picture of the customer from which to personalize their experience.

It is only once you have developed this intimate understanding of your customers that you can deliver relevant and tailored experiences. There are three vital ingredients food delivery companies can add to their customer experience to make it first class:

The personal touch

Humanize the experience and speak to the customer to find out what they like and don’t like. Do away with blanket messaging, and deliver truly personalized emails and push notifications that allow you to provide relevant content to the right customers at the right time.

True convenience

Customer’s love of self service is increasing; and geolocation is one of the easiest ways to facilitate this. Showing the customer their nearest collection points or restaurants adds efficiency to the process. Likewise, recommending new restaurants in their area serving their favourite cuisine is a simple yet effective way of easing the purchase journey.

Streamlined services

Simplicity is key within any service. Enabling customers to navigate the multitude of choices by surfacing those most relevant to them is just as crucial in ensuring the easy flow of information across all devices. With the evolution of app-based notifications, there is also little excuse for error when it comes to keeping the customer updated with the process of their order.

Only by providing a connected and highly relevant end-to-end experience will you be able to exceed these expectations and nurture a first time visitor into your most loyal customer. Anything less and your customers will be left hungry for more, from somewhere else.