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Commission Free And Free Online Ordering Website And System For Restaurants in Australia

In Australia, you can easily start deliveries for your restaurant with a free online ordering website or system and pay-per-delivery food delivery driver network for your restaurant.


food delivery scooter coming out from mobile app restaurant and customer ordering food online
Online ordering and food delivery


Nowadays, restaurant owners and restaurateurs alike refer to terms like "online food ordering website", "online food ordering system" and "online food delivery platform" interchangeably. However, there are subtle differences.

 

TABLE OF CONTENTS



- Pros
- Cons

- Pros
- Cons


- Pros
- Cons


 


The Basics: Online Food Ordering Website vs Online Food Ordering System vs Online Food Delivery Platform


Without going too deep into technicalities, an online ordering system for restaurants comprises of multiple parts (website, pos, delivery etc). Think of it like an eco-system of technology that makes your restaurant run.


A website for online ordering is a website that lets customers choose their food from an online menu and make payments online. The food order could be for either takeaway / pickup or delivery.


Last but not the least, an online food delivery platform usually refers to third-party aggregators. In Australia, third-party aggregators or food delivery platforms are companies like Ubereats, Doordash and Menulog. They provide a marketplace product with an existing customer base using their mobile app and they run the deliveries for your restaurant.


So should I get an online ordering website, fully integrated online ordering system or a third-party food delivery platform for my restaurant? This depends largely on the existing state and scale of your operations of your restaurant.


Nowadays, in Australia, most of them charge a commission. There are 2 reputable providers who provide a completely free tier and there's a bunch of others with commission free online ordering website and system for restaurants. Read on to find out more.




Fully Integrated Online Ordering System For Restaurants


restaurant owner tapping on point of sale system
Integrated online ordering system

An online ordering system generally consists of a system of fully integrated technology like POS (point-of-sale), online ordering website, delivery driver network or fleet management system for in-house food delivery drivers.


Nowadays, many technology providers are partnering with other technology rivals or complementary product providers in order to offer an all encompassing fully integrated online ordering system experience for their restaurant merchants.


PROs - price, operations

Price: It's generally cheaper to get a fully integrated system than getting it by parts. When multiple technology companies come together to offer an integrated solution, they often agree on taking a small discount off their normal prices to make it more appealing for restaurant merchants. These companies usually charge a low flat monthly fee plus a small commission or flat fee based on usage of certain features.


Operations: Various pieces of technology in the system would "talk to each other" well so that your restaurant operations (both online and offline) would be smoother and more efficient.


CONs - costly to switch out, fragmented support, missing out on new and better technology

Costly to switch: However, as a restaurant owner or operator, you won't be able to easily switch out of their system i.e. switching from one fully integrated online ordering system to another becomes very costly. Not because of long term contracts, but simply because of the time and process required to switch technology and perhaps even hardware. Whilst there might not be an actual long term contract, you being tied into a virtual one that prevents you from leaving them.


Fragmented support: As mentioned earlier, technology providers are partnering with one another in order to offer an all-encompassing integrated online ordering system for restaurants. This often means 3 or more (sometimes even 10 or more!) different businesses teaming up to offer your their products. The reality is, when things go wrong, or when you urgently need help or support, you'd still be dealing with multiple businesses. The level of support would vary based on each businesses operation style and resources.


Missing out on new and better technology: Last but not the least, once you've started on a fully integrated online ordering system for your restaurant, you won't be able to try out new technology created by new companies for any parts of your restaurant operations. New and better technology are continuously being developed for various aspects of restaurant business and operations. Say your existing fully integrated system includes QR code table order taking. If a different company introduces a newer and better table ordering technology, it's unlikely you would be able to fit it to your existing system.


Which Type Of Restaurant Should Go For Fully Integrated Systems?

Chain and franchise stores: The restaurants who benefit most from a fully integrated online ordering system are usually chain or franchise restaurants with centralised technology and operations support for their stores. However, this assumes that the provider of the technology provider is a "true" fully integrated technology platform that offers centralised support. Unfortunately, there are not many technology companies out there with the resources and scale to achieve that. In Australia, most are made up of a bunch of different technology providers who team up to offer one fully integrated solution for restaurants.



Independent Online Ordering Website For Restaurants


person ordering pizza online on tablet
Online ordering website

An online ordering website gives your customers the ability to order and pay for your restaurant from a website. The food order could be for pick up / collection or delivery.


Most online food ordering website providers in Australia do not have their own fleet of delivery drivers as it is very hard to build, maintain and scale an on-demand delivery driver network. Most providers in Australia are therefore tapping into larger third-party delivery driver network like Doordash and Uber for their white-label flat fee pay-per-delivery solutions.


Doordash provides a white-label pay-per-delivery solution that charges restaurant merchants 0% commission (i.e. commission free). Each delivery costs a flat fee starting from $12 for a 3km drop off and additional $1 for each extra km. You can find out more about Doordash's white-label on-demand delivery "Doordash Drive" here.


Uber provides a similar pay-per-delivery solution called "Uber Direct". It's also commission free. It charges a base fee of $10, plus $1.10 for every extra km. Other fees may also apply. You can find out more about Uber's white-label on-demand delivery "Uber Direct" here.


If you're looking for more tailored food delivery solution for your online orders, you might want to consider using your own staff for deliveries or using in-house delivery contractors from DeliveryTasker. DeliveryTasker lets you create a team of in-house delivery contractors that would deliver just for your restaurant. With over 25,000 food delivery drivers on the network, DeliveryTasker is popular amongst high volume and delivery focused restaurants serving Italian cuisine, pizza, fast-food, burger, charcoal grilled or friend chicken, chinese vietnamese, thai, indian and other asian cuisines. You can find out more about DeliveryTasker's in-house food delivery solution here.


One thing to note is that DeliveryTasker's in-house delivery contractors are only available for hourly-hiring (from a minimum of 2 hours), on any day and time. Other than online food deliveries, delivery drivers also offer extra services like folding takeaway boxes, drying cutleries and various simple or light store work. Feedback from restaurant merchants is that DeliveryTasker's in-house online food delivery platform gives restaurants back the control over delivery service and standards that are commonly sacrificed when restaurants use third-party pay-per-delivery food platforms like Doordash, Ubereats and Menulog.


DeliveryTasker's mobile app lets restaurants get in-house food delivery drivers in less than 1 hour. You can find out how the process works here.


PROs - price, features, delivery options

Price: Good news for restaurants in Australia is that there's many technology companies out there offering online ordering websites for restaurants. As such, cost for using them have been trending downwards. In Australia, there 2 known technology companies that provide restaurants with a completely free online ordering website (DeliveryTasker and GloriaFoods). DeliveryTasker is an Australian based company. You can check out DeliveryTasker's free online ordering website inclusions here. On the other hand, GloriaFoods is owned by an international major technology company called Oracle and they may not have Australian based support.


Features: Majority of the online ordering websites, including DeliveryTasker, has multiple features like option to choose pick up / delivery, merchant menu management portal, a user-friendly menu creation and editing console, setting menu items like half-half pizzas, removing ingredients, adding extra ingredients and more.


Delivery Options: With most online ordering website providers in Australia, you can choose between using their integrated pay-per-delivery driver network via Doordash's white-label service Doordash Drive or Uber's equivalent Uber Direct. At the time of writing this blog, DeliveryTasker is the only known Australian based online ordering website provider that has its own in-house delivery driver network.


CONs - switching costs, support, delivery volumes, delivery drivers

Switching costs: This depends on the state of your restaurant's existing online ordering business and ownership of the website address and domain name. If you've been using an online ordering website with a website address or domain name that is not owned and managed by yourself and you've used the website for 1 or 2 years with a steady flow of regular patrons, then switching online ordering website providers may not be straightforward. This is because many of your regular customers might have added your online ordering website address as favourites on their mobile phones or computer for easy access and quick ordering. Changing an online ordering website provider means that your online ordering website address and domain name may change as well. As a result, you could see a drop in online sales. However, if you haven't got much online sales, then the impact wouldn't be large. Alternatively, you could maintain two different online ordering websites initially and try to divert your regular customers to the new website address by slipping flyers into each online order that you deliver, or sending out emails informing your customers of the change. Once most of the customers have started using the new online ordering website, you can turn off the old one. Depending on your strategy, this could take one or two months.


Support: You pay for what you get. In order to provide cheaper solutions, technology companies often reduce cost of human resource. Human support representatives are a major labour cost. As such, technology companies are trying to reduce support labour cost by using chat bots, FAQs and outsource chat support representatives to third-party companies in countries like India. This could cause massive frustrations to restaurant merchants when trying to solve an urgent problem or a problem that doesn't have a solution that is clearly explained in the FAQ. To make matters worse, outsourced third-party chat support representatives often do not have in-depth knowledge of the technology or product to provide satisfactory answers or solutions to your problems.


Delivery volumes: delivery sales do not magically sky rocket once you've activated your online ordering website. That's one of the key difference between an online ordering website and an online food delivery platform. The latter has an existing customer base that is ready to buy your restaurant's food once you list on their platform. However, if you're a restaurant owner who has just started online food delivery for your restaurant, then expect to get less than 100 orders per month. It takes various marketing strategies and methods to drive traffic to your new online ordering website.


Delivery drivers: an online ordering website is simply a website. You will still need to find delivery drivers to help you deliver the food to your customers. Many restaurant owners do not have in-house staff or delivery drivers who could deliver the online orders. Whilst white-label delivery services are easily accessible, they generally cost between $12 ~ $16 per delivery. Some may include additional fees as well. Some common complaints that we hear from restaurants who use those white-label pay-per-delivery services is the poor delivery service, inaccurate pick up times and late drop offs, resulting in food turning cold. This causes requests for refunds, poor ratings on google and food platforms and numerous other problems for restaurant owners.


Which Type Of Restaurant Should Have An Online Ordering Website?

Family owned independent restaurants (new and established): Pretty much every restaurant should have its own online ordering website! Since the COVID-19 pandemic, the online food delivery industry has sky rocketed. The volume of online orders as an industry in Australia and globally continue to grow rapidly every year. The lockdowns have permanently changed people's lifestyles. This has a significant impact on the business operations of a restaurant. If you still don't have an online ordering website that caters for delivery, then you're really missing out and may face the risk of shut down sooner than you think. Restaurants who focus solely on dine-in need to invest significantly on either a great location, uniquely themed fit-outs or experience. However, this strategy is only suited for restaurant owners with a sizeable capital for investment.



Third-Party Online Food Delivery Platforms


food delivery bags and logos of ubereats menulog doordash
Third party food delivery platforms in Australia

Third-party online food aggregators or food delivery platforms are companies like Ubereats, Menulog and Doordash that operates a marketplace for consumers to purchase from restaurants. They provide restaurants with a captive target audience of potential customers who are ready to make a purchase from a restaurant anytime (i.e. hungry customers).


Ubereats, Menulog and Doordash have the largest marketshare of online food orders in Australia and similarly across other countries. Not only do they give restaurants direct access to hungry consumers, they also offer restaurants tools and technology to list their menu online (i.e. similarly to an online ordering website or system) and importantly, a large network of on-demand food delivery contractors to pick up and drop off food orders received on their platforms. These major third-party food delivery platforms also provides various technology and integrations for running a restaurant. For instance, most POS for restaurants offers integration with Ubereats, Menulog and Doordash. Lately, Doordash has announced that it's rolling out AI-powered telephone services to help busy restaurants cope with incoming customer calls. You can read about it here.


PROs - captive audience, delivery network

Captive audience: Since millions of users are using Ubereats, Doordash and Menulog, any restaurant can get new online orders simply by listing their restaurant on the food delivery platforms. There's no need to spend time and money on advertising because the platforms spend millions of dollars every year advertising to get users on their app (i.e. they spend on advertising so that you don't have to).


Delivery network: If you are a restaurant who is just starting online deliveries, you may not have the experience, resources, tools and technology to create or manage your own in-house delivery fleet. Ubereats, Menulog and Doordash have thousands of readily available on-demand food delivery contractors to deliver food ordered on their platforms. You don't need to worry about getting your own delivery drivers.


CONs - expensive, support, delivery service, refund disputes, driver shortage

Expensive: Many restaurants feel that the 30% commission that the major food delivery platforms charge is too expensive.


Delivery service: Common complaints from restaurant merchants largely revolve around the delivery service standards. Some include late or inaccurate pick up times, food pinching by delivery drivers, spilled or damaged food and even disgruntled delivery drivers giving restaurants 1 star ratings and reviews on the restaurant's google business profile. Mistreatment of food orders and sometime poor delivery times by food delivery drivers who juggle multiple deliveries from all platforms at the same time have also led to increases in refund disputes, complaints of cold food and poor ratings.


Refund disputes: Ubereats, Menulog and Doordash provide consumers on their apps with the ease of getting refunds for missing, damaged items or even cold food. Unfortunately, we often hear from restaurant owners that as much as 5% of sales (sometimes even more) every month are involved in refund disputes. According to the restaurant owners, many of those disputes are fraudulent attempts by dishonest consumers to get full or partial refund from online food orders that had no issues at all. In some cases, a single missing item could sometimes result in a full refund of an order.


Driver shortage: Whilst Ubereats, Menulog and Doordash have a large network of delivery drivers that cover most areas, in Australia, restaurant owners have reported that driver shortage in certain suburbs have led to poor sales, particularly on peak delivery evenings like Fridays and Saturdays, and even rainy days . For instance, between 2021 and 2022, restaurant owners have reported that sales were very low in suburbs like Prahran, Hawthorn and Chirnside Park in the state of Victoria. When these restaurants started to use the "self-delivery" option (using own restaurant staff to deliver the food), sales more than doubled. Note that by using the self-delivery option, Ubereats, Menulog and Doordash also reduce the commission rates that they charge restaurants by 50%.


To check how self-delivery works for Ubereats, follow this link.


To check out how Doordash's self-delivery option works, follow this link. For information on Doordash's reduced commission rate for self-delivery, follow this link.


Menulog is less transparent about its pricing and at the time of writing this blog, does not publish its commission rates publicly. However, according to information from various restaurant owners and ex-menulog employees, like Ubereats and Doordash, Menulog also charges around 15% (instead of the full 30%) for self-delivery.


Which Type Of Restaurant Should Have An Online Ordering Website?

All types of restaurants (new and established): Overall, we believe the PROs of using third-party food delivery platforms far outweigh the CONs, as heard first hand from numerous restaurant owners. The sales that you can get on these platforms usually adds a significant amount of revenue to your restaurant. Nowadays, many restaurants have also marked up their menu prices on these platforms to cover either the full or partial commission that they are paying, making profit margins from third-party platforms no different from dine-in sales.


There are also several strategies that a restaurant can use to boost the profit margins and delivery service quality. For instance, restaurants could use self-delivery on peak delivery days of each week to reduce commission charges by half. To execute this strategy, you would need an on-demand in-house food delivery platform like DeliveryTasker to enable you to get your own delivery contractors. To find out more about DeliveryTasker's in-house online food delivery service, visit our page here.




Commission Free Online Ordering And Free Online Ordering Websites and System For Restaurants In Australia


restaurant staff placing online food delivery orders in delivery bag
Commission free and free online ordering for restaurants


Over the last 2 years, a number of technology companies have started offering online ordering websites that are commission free. These companies usually charge either a flat fee on a monthly basis, a flat fee on a per order basis or a combination of both.


Australian Companies Offering Commission Free Online Ordering Website And System For Restaurants

(as the time of writing this blog)

- DeliveryTasker

- NextOrder

- BiteHQ


Australian Companies Offering Completely Free Online Ordering Website And System For Restaurants


International Companies Offering Completely Free Online Ordering Website For Restaurants in Australia

- GloriaFood


NextOrder and BiteHQ provide integrations with either Doordash Drive or Uber Direct for flat fee pay-per-delivery.


DeliveryTasker provides free access to Doordash Drive. It also provides paid access to on-demand in-house delivery contractors.


Separately, DeliveryTasker also offers restaurant an alternative solution where we run all deliveries for the restaurant using a combination of our in-house delivery network (over 25,000 food delivery drivers across Australia) and Doordash pay-per-delivery. Restaurant does not need to hire or manage any delivery drivers. We do all that for them.




Get Started With Online Deliveries For Your Restaurant

If you are a new restaurant, then start with DeliveryTasker's completely free tier online ordering website system which gives you free access to Doordash Drive's flat service delivery (pay-per-deliver) service. As you grow your online ordering sales, you can easily upgrade to more advanced tiers on DeliveryTasker and even access our in-house delivery contractors for better delivery quality and control.





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