When looking for an online ordering system for your restaurant, you should look for three key factors. They are ease of use, social media/marketing and last but not least cost. Most of the takeout ordering systems available either charge the restaurant a high percentage (10% to 30%) of each order or they quote a low rate for software that only provides online ordering through a desktop, is not mobile friendly, and provides no marketing. Once you find out what the additional fees are for features that should have been included in the first place, you are paying a significantly higher price for what is just a simple app that provides online ordering.
That’s why at Takeout Rocket we provide a very simple pricing model with no gimmicks and feel we have what is the best online ordering system for restaurants available. Our two pricing plans include web, Apple and Android ordering, we don’t charge extra for different platforms, it’s all included. This gives your existing and new customers the ability to not only order from home on their desktop or laptop, but they can also order from iPhone or Android smart phones if they are out on the go or working late. Also, we don’t charge extra for marketing materials or social media posting, it’s included.
Three Factors to Consider When Choosing an Online Ordering System
1. Easy to Use
The way a customer orders should be very straight forward. They should be able to choose their items from the online menu and easily proceed to checkout without too many clicks, and without having to go back and forth too much. Also, if they make a mistake, it should be easy for the customer to correct that mistake and complete their order.
The online ordering system should allow restaurants to choose between having the customer pay online for their order or pay at the time of delivery or in-store pickup. We strongly suggest that restaurants have customers pay online at the time of ordering for two reasons. First, you don’t want pranksters ordering food and not paying for it, or even having it delivered to someone who did not even place the order. Second, if the customer is coming to pick-up the order at the restaurant on a busy Friday or Saturday, no sense them having to wait in line behind a few customers when all they have to do is pick-up and go.
2. Social Media, Marketing and Promotional Materials
What does the online ordering system you are looking at offer other than the software to process orders online? We know the importance of exposure and how that can increase a restaurant’s business. Customers need to be reminded you are there and offering them great food. The saying “Out of Sight, Out of Mind” is especially true in the restaurant industry.
Our team helped develop social media scheduling software that we have included in each of our monthly pricing plans at no additional cost. Depending on the restaurant, in addition to sending traffic to the online ordering page, in most cases we can send traffic to their Facebook page, restaurant website, Instagram or even Pinterest. Our restaurant clients receive social media posts each month as part of our monthly package.
It was very important for us to be able to offer social media marketing as part of our online ordering system for restaurants, at no additional charge. Some of our competitors don’t even assist restaurants with marketing or promotion, and some that do charge extra for those services.
Some online ordering companies may also offer customer emailing as a separate feature, for which they charge extra. Takeout Rocket offers an emailing service as well, and highly recommends that restaurants email their customer base from time to time to announce interesting menu specials, discounts, menu changes or holiday specials.
3. Cost of the System Overall; Watch out for Hidden Fees
Last but not least, how does the online ordering system compare cost wise to other systems on the market? There are really just two models, percentage based and a flat monthly fee. Once we saw how much our competitors were charging restaurants for a simple online ordering system, we saw a tremendous opportunity to help restaurants save money. There is no need to charge high percentages for online ordering software.
Some competitors have an online ordering system that charges a percentage of anywhere from 15% to 30% of the order. Some restaurants we talked to were a bit confused by the pricing models, since the online ordering system charged different rates based on a number of factors, and the pricing was not even clearly stated on their website. These factors included how the order came in, where it was linked from, as well as where the restaurant was placed in the pecking order of many restaurants based on some type of sorting algorithm being used. Restaurants would end up having to bid for placement and paying higher commission rates for the privilege of appearing higher in the search order of a particular page.
Takeout Rocket Uses a Simple Pricing Plan
Takeout Rocket has two pricing plans. We charge a flat rate of $49.99 per month which requires the restaurant to have their takeout orders processed through our designated credit card processor. We also offer an even lower rate of $29.99 per month if the restaurant agrees to put all their credit card processing through our designated processor.
Other Factors to Consider When Choosing an Online Ordering System
A Word about Fake Restaurant Listings
As mentioned above, some online ordering companies charge a higher percentage to list your restaurant more prominently toward the top of a page when a customer is looking for a restaurant. This actually resulted in some restaurants creating multiple fake listings using different names to gain an unfair advantage over other restaurants in the same city. Be wary of companies that charge extra for a preferential listing location on the page.
Does your Restaurant Collect fees Daily and Only Pay you Monthly?
Many companies that offer an online ordering system collect the total amount of the order and all fees on a daily basis, rather than the restaurant collecting the amount. In these cases the company remits the net proceeds to the restaurant, less all applicable fees and commissions. The restaurant receives the net amount the following month, which has caused some restaurants to stop using those companies that pay only monthly. Most restaurants prefer to have their own merchant account and receive the funds themselves.
Takeout Rocket requires the restaurant to have a merchant account with a processor it designatea, so the restaurant can collect on a daily basis, the full amount of the order, applicable taxes and delivery fees that may want to include as well. The restaurant is simply charged $49.99 or $29.99 monthly depending on which Takeout Rocket plan they sign up for as well as credit card processing fees.
These two plans apply to all restaurants whether they are fine dining, full-service restaurants (FSRs), fast casual or quick-service restaurants (QSRs). If you are one location, or multi-location, no problem, give us a call. If you want to integrate our software with your POS system, no problem either, we’re happy to help.
Saving Money with Takeout Rocket
Savings Example: If a restaurant is paying 15% per order with one of our competitors and doing $3,000 per month in takeout ordering, they are paying $450 per month (plus credit card processing costs).
That same restaurant using Takeout Rocket’s $49.99 plan would be saving $400 per month or close to $5,000 per year, which is a huge savings.
Co-founders Joe and Lou count numerous restaurants as their valued customers. Over the years they have provided them with unparalleled service to help them reduce costs and increase business.
Based on the demands and feedback Joe and Lou were getting from their customers, establishing a takeout ordering software company became the next logical step. After conducting deep market research on restaurant industry needs, pricing and features they constructed a premium online ordering system for restaurants small, large and multi-location. We hope you become one of our valued restaurant clients and look forward to the opportunity to serve your needs.