No More Orders over the Phone???

Discussion in 'Marketing / Increasing Sales' started by JTMiller09, Aug 30, 2019.

?

Would you ever switch to only offering online ordering for takeout and delivery?

  1. Yes

    50.0%
  2. No

    50.0%
  1. JTMiller09

    JTMiller09 Member

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    I am considering no longer taking orders over the phone and directing all takeout and delivery to online. We recently switched to ChowNow and love it! Online orders are up 40%... with and $8 check average increase.

    My thoughts:

    1. Every order will be right, because the customer is always right and the ordering will be on them.

    2. Higher check average

    3. All orders are paid for online, so for Takeout, no more manual card entries over the phone and when the Guest shows up...they just states their name and off they go. For Delivery, no more pre-authorizing Credit Cards, Drivers entering Tips, etc.... All orders are paid for when they are placed. We have seen about 20% average too for our online deliveries...because the app gives a % option (10%, 20%, Other).

    3. This would be 1-2 less hourly employees per shift, who typically answer phones and ring people out.

    4. No more "I told the person I places my order "Extra Cheese!!!". You have ruined my life because I didn't get my EXTRA CHEESE!

    4. No more getting the person on the phone to stop their rambling their order, before you have to stop them and ask if Pickup or Delivery, their name...etc...

    Do I think we may lose some customers who just won't place online...yes. but I "think" with increased order accuracy, ease of pickup for Guest, labor savings, increased check average, etc...it is worth testing.

    If anybody has made the switch, would love to learn about your learnings...also, just member thoughts in general.

    Thanks!
     
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  2. Daddio

    Daddio Well-Known Member Moderator

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    I have a number of customers that would be left out if I were to do this. They are the older folks that have trouble with technology and all they want to do is talk to a real person. I take pride in the fact I try to meet EVERY customer's needs whether it is making their pizza that special way or giving them the little extra attention they need.
     
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  3. Peppydogg

    Peppydogg New Member

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    Yes! I have been saying this for years. Not only is it a good idea, I think it's our future. It's inevitable. Amazon. Ebay. Grubhub. Uber. When is the last time you called one of them to place an order? We can learn from them.
    I've been an owner for 10+ years and a manager for almost 25...and phone calls are the most brutal part of my job. When I'm alone in the store on a Thursday morning getting crushed for lunch and someone calls and makes me read them the entire menu over the phone....I Want To SCREAM! It is getting absolutely absurd. There can be $300 worth of delivery orders on the screen that need made right now, and I have to spend 8 minutes on the phone telling somebody what kind of 2 liters we have for the third time....or how many cuts are in a large vs. extra large over and over, just to have them say "never mind, I'll call you back, I don't need this till Tuesday" or even worse spend 7 minutes taking an order for $4.00 salad in the middle of a rush. I love that. And all the dropped calls that call back 6 times, and you still can't hear them. And the telemarketers!! Every time the phone rings I have to stop what I'm doing and grab it, even if it's not an order. Such a waste of time.
    And every time I complain about this... everyone says just hire more people! Yeah! That's the solution. We don't need an extra person all the time. Who's gonna pay them to stand around on the days when we aren't busy? Especially when the minimum wage hits $15.00 an hour everywhere.
    If only someone could invent a small device that people could carry in their pocket that would allow instant access to all the information in the world so potential customers could browse our menu at their leisure and easily place orders and prepay for them at the touch of a button, at virtually no cost to us. Then we wouldn't have to take phone calls. That would be cool. If only such technology existed....Oh wait, it does. And we are all idiots if we don't take advantage of it.
     
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2019
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  4. Rico

    Rico Active Member

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    [QUOTE="There can be $300 worth of delivery orders on the screen that need made right now, and I have to spend 8 minutes on the phone telling somebody what kind of 2 liters we have for the third time.[/QUOTE]

    Just curious did the $300 worth of delivery orders come through an online ordering platform or over the phone?


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
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  5. durbancic

    durbancic Active Member

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    Do you already offer online ordering? If so, encourage it in your advertising. Offer a coupon for online orders ONLY on your ads. We started with 25% off, now we offer a 10% off online order coupon pretty standard. This month 25% of our orders have been online for 31% of our sales.
     
  6. Peppydogg

    Peppydogg New Member

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    Just curious did the $300 worth of delivery orders come through an online ordering platform or over the phone?


    Both Rico. We do about 1/3 of our business online though Grubhub (with our drivers delivering), the rest phones. But Grubhub is getting very expensive and we still have to enter them in our POS system, which is also time consuming. I've actually been inspired by one of your recent posts. I want to add integrated online ordering through the POS and market the hell out of it. Then incentivize people to switch from Grubhub. Reduce phone calls. Save fees & time. Should equal better service.
    I'm not saying get rid of all phone orders tomorrow, that's more of a long term goal. I just think phones orders can be overly time consuming and very stressful. The more online orders, the better. I've probably taken 250,000 phone orders myself over the years. I'm tired of hearing the same things over and over.
     
  7. Rico

    Rico Active Member

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    What’s the name of your POS company? I use a company called Chowly that sends third party orders directly through to your POS for a small fee per order. Will save you tons of time not having to manually enter them. Try shutting down GrubHub on a Friday and see if it affects your sales by the end of your week. I’ve been trying to figure them out and it seems what ever I do they always seem to send a certain amount of orders my way by the weeks end. I believe that they send you a certain amount of orders based on what your percent rate is at. So if your averaging 50 orders per week and you shut it down for two days they will push your site harder the next 5 days to meet the 50 order average. This is just a theory and I’m still testing it out. I’ve got them down to about. 30-40 orders a week down from 80-100 per week in about 10 months and my sales have gone up in that time (wait till they see what I do next). My thoughts are if you shut it down on a Friday and you don’t lose any sales then the customers still want to order from you but they just want the convenience of doing it online. Which is where your integrated online ordering site is going to need to happen. If you really want to lose GrubHub and take phone orders down to a minimum you need to get the online site happening.
     
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  8. Peppydogg

    Peppydogg New Member

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    I never heard of Chowly, but I will look into it, would be awesome if it works. Most of our Grubhub customers only order on Grubhub, they probably wouldn't call if I shut it down. It seems that Phone customers will jump over to Grubhub, but Grubhub customers don't become phone customers. But I should be able to get both groups to use our integrated POS, once that works. Win-win.
     
  9. famousperry

    famousperry Active Member

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    I use online only when we are in the weeds on a Friday night (usually due to dining room getting slammed). We activate a heavy call volume message in Pizza Cloud that tells people we are experiencing heavy call volume and are only accepting online orders. We make it known that once an order is placed it CANNOT be cancelled! This allows us to use our staff to catch up instead of answering those annoying where is my food calls? This has been a godsend and I would love to eventually be able to convert everyone to online, but I do not think we are there yet. The biggest hurdle would be to figure out how customers would contact us when there is a problem...
     
  10. Rico

    Rico Active Member

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  11. grassospizza1993

    grassospizza1993 Member

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    1. Every order will be right, because the customer is always right and the ordering will be on them.

    I do online ordering through our website. I can tell you that this is not the case.
     
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  12. JTMiller09

    JTMiller09 Member

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    Update: Made the switch and have seen sales increase 18%-28% weekly, year over year. Yes, we have upset lost some guests...but overall it has streamlined operations, reduced overhead, eliminated no shows and greatly increased accuracy.
     
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