What Is An Online Ordering System & The Advantages of Using One For Your Food Business?

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So far, we’ve published plenty of insightful blog posts that answer the question ‘What is an online ordering system?’ and what an online ordering system entails in terms of its benefits to your restaurant. There’s still a fair chance that this might be your first time reading a post on our blog. 

If you are not familiar with the basic ‘what is an online ordering system’ terminology, or anything else relevant to it for that matter, this article is for you – it will share important details that will help you make an informed decision about which online ordering system to use for your food business. At the end of the day, food businesses that use centralized order processing platforms increase their sales based on data-driven decisions. 

That’s not all though.

Seeing to the notion of ‘what is an online ordering system’ and the overall benefits of using it, it is also imperative to mention some other advantages here. Essentially, you are looking for a Quick Commerce platform that also leverages the business analytics, marketing, customer relationship management, and logistics management aspects of your restaurant business. 

Simple modifications, such as the integration of the Pay Now button or a widget to your food business social media page allude to the social commerce aspect of your company. Customers won’t have to switch over to a new tab to open a new instance of your official restaurant website, as all the orders can be placed from your social media page.

What Are the Advantages of An Online Ordering System?

  • There is less room for error since all order fulfillment processes are unified in one online ordering system …
  • All your incoming and outgoing food business transactions are digitized and instantly retrievable.
  • An overall delightful customer experience results from faster order processing, and deliveries backed by smart automation.
  • Increased customer loyalty is driven by loyalty programs, discounts, and other promotions.
  • A number of online ordering systems for restaurants are available at competitive prices!
  • The cost of running your food business is significantly reduced since most order fulfillment processes are automated and don’t require additional manpower.

What Is An Online Ordering System? 

what is an online ordering system, ordering system for restaurants

Now that we are beyond some of the advantages of an online ordering platform, let’s answer the question ‘what is an online ordering system?’ in layman’s terms. 

An online ordering system is a simple automated system that enables your restaurant to process internet-based food orders from online customers through a branded website or mobile app.

A fairly accurate version of the aforementioned definition of ‘what is an online ordering system’ would be a restaurant food ordering app. Customers log on to your name-brand’s mobile application, add a bunch of items from your online menu to their carts, proceed to check out, select a payment method of their choice and place their orders.

Once such orders are placed, your restaurant ordering system registers them automatically on the back-end. All you have to do is process the order, as in cook or prepare, pack, dispatch, and deliver it.  That’s what the average online ordering system entails these days. An advanced one’s will offer you a logistics management solution as well.

As one can imagine, the order journey from order placement to payment processing, to food delivery is reduced to as short as 15 minutes. An online ordering system enables a much quicker service than the dine-in point of sale does where your regular customers may have to wait for well over 60 minutes for their orders during rush hours.

How Does an Online Ordering System Work At a Basic Level?

Without going into too many technicalities, we’ll try to explain how an online ordering system works. This is to help you understand the process from a basic point of view. Of course, if you want to take a deep dive into the specifics of each process, you can always contact Blink Co. for restaurants representatives to book a free walkthrough demo.

Here is a step-by-step explanation of how an online ordering system works.

  1. Your customer knows your food business by your brand name, or he’s is simply browsing through a third-party food ordering platform, and stumbles upon your online ordering platform. 
  2. The customer browses through your online food ordering menu and enters whatever items into a virtual cart. After that, the customer enters the delivery information prompted at checkout, including the point-of-sale i.e. delivery or take-away.
  3. The customer clicks the ‘Checkout’ button and is redirected to a payment page. Here the payment mode is selected – either an online prepayment through debit/credit card or cash payment upon delivery(*also known as CoD or Cash on Delivery. 
  4. Customers who opt for the debit/credit card payment method are redirected to a payment gateway page where they fill 
  5. Once steps 1-3 are completed and the pre-payment is made (if applicable), you can assign your restaurant’s rider through a fleet management portal to deliver the order to the customer. 

Advanced online ordering systems offer a map view of the rider’s location and movement to your customer in real-time. This way, you can track delivery times and provide your customers with an accurate estimated time of arrival based on the rider’s movement, and distance from the customer’s address.

Which Ordering System Is The Best For My Food Business?

We recommend getting started with Blink Co. It’s a fast, simple, reliable solution – and the most affordable one on the market as of now – that’s backed up by a hyper-active customer support team. 

Blink is a direct quick commerce enablement platform with all the bells and whistles of a cutting-edge online ordering system. Here are some of the advantages of signing up for a merchant account with Blink Co. 

  • You get a branded mobile food ordering app and website so that you can market your business the way you want directly to your customers, instead of the other way around!
  • Avail free push notification and low-price SMS marketing solutions available on the back-end, and send SMS messages and app notifications directly to your customers.
  • A dynamic dashboard integrated with Microsoft Power BI for business analytics that will enable you to make data-driven decisions geared towards growth – all of that without the hassle of manual number crunching.
  • Budget-friendly monthly subscription packages allow you to save and re-invest in your business.
  • Seamless user experiences on a system with zero downtime increase returning customers and repeat orders, which, in turn, multiply sales growth
  • Leverage a fleet management system that comes with a delivery management portal and rider app integrated with your back-of-house merchant portal for quick, digitally-enabled deliveries managed in-house

At the end of the day, whichever food ordering system you choose to settle for, make sure that you have done enough due diligence to make an informed decision. Check online product reviews for such systems; talk to other restaurant owners to about their experiences using online ordering systems, compare prices and features to see what fits your business requirements – so on and so forth. 

A lot of virtual ordering solutions for restaurants are turning out to be way more expensive than their price tags due to extra, hidden charges only revealed to you after sign-up. You could end up with a solution that’s not feasible for your business. 

It’s better to consult industry experts before paying upfront for any such service. You can book a free demo at the ‘Blink for Restaurants’ page, or get a quick overview of our processes through the ‘How It Works’ page

Good luck!

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