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Is it time to build your own delivery service app? Let’s find out

By Shilpi Chhabra 28th May 2021

How to create your own delivery service app? Third-party delivery, ever since its commencement in the early ‘90s has been an incredibly viable industry. From using walkie talkies for communication with delivery drivers to using automated dispatch apps in mobile phones, the industry has seen tremendous growth in the last three decades.

Companies such as DoorDash, Uber Eats, GrubHub have been exploding in popularity since the outbreak which resulted in heavy demand for online services and home deliveries. Business operators who were previously unwilling to set aside an extra budget for third party dispatch services have had to make a transition amidst such critical times. The pandemic really put third party deliveries in the spotlight. 

Is third party delivery enough? Here’s what you need for your business

While many decided to shut their operations at the onset of COVID-19, others challenged the new normal and decided to continue doing business off-premises with the help of third party deliveries. But relying on third-party logistics came with its own set of challenges like relinquishing direct control over your business operations, operating at an expense of your customers’ database, losing real-time visibility, lack of quality control and no direct customer relationships. Such factors combined weigh heavily on the integrity of any business. Plus, the hefty transaction cost over extremely thin profit margins. Such shortcomings made business owners think, is third party delivery enough? 

This post explores some of the challenges of working with third-party delivery providers and the vital role played by dispatch systems in such trying times. So, if you’ve found yourself stumbling on these issues while availing third party delivery services, here’s what you need for your business. 

Challenge #1 Who’s to blame in the delivery game? (Brand Integrity) 

Customers are happy for as long as the delivery game is on-point. The moment something goes wrong, brands are the first ones to bear the brunt of it. An unintentional spill often results in customers blaming restaurants for poor packaging services. Restaurant owners sometimes lose loyal customers at the hands of a third party delivery service. This involves several reasons such as delayed deliveries, order mishandling or poor coordination or communication with customers, logistics barriers etc. 

And when they aren’t satisfied with the end deliveries, they don’t know whom to turn to due to the lack of a clear communication channel. If the communication reached the brands directly, they would do something to resolve the customers’ concerns, leading to improved consumer engagement and better business.

A dispatch system that comes in the form of a fully integrated app service helps business operators keep a direct eye on the last-mile delivery services. 

Challenge #2 Do brands get to know their customers? (Customer Data ownership) 

When customers order from an app or a website, they first become the customer of the third-party app and not the restaurant directly, In fact, if you call the restaurant directly for any complaints, they will direct you to the third party delivery app who further initiates action. This means that the business owners miss out on most of the customers’ experience. When third party apps control the process, they take away with them the entire customer database. Without complete information on customers’ preferences, latest trends, reviews, business owners can’t create an engaging customer experience. 

To address this, restaurant owners must outsource their services to a dispatch network that gives them complete ownership of the customer database. With integrated networks like Tookan, restaurant owners can create their own food delivery app service. This way they can deliver efficiently without missing out on important customer info. 

Challenge #3 Inconsistent visibility across the supply chain  (Real-time visibility) 

Centralised and real-time visibility is of prime importance in the delivery cycle. Most business owners struggle to gain complete visibility over third-party delivery providers, which makes it difficult for brands to carry through customers’ expectations. In addition to end-delivery notifications, business owners and dispatchers should be able to extract real-time status updates of delivery in progress. 

The right dispatch software and delivery app enhance real-time visibility across the supply chain. It manages the drivers’ schedules, tracks vehicles, measures driver/agent performance and optimizes operations for best performance. Dispatch networks like Tookan come with centralized dashboards for fleet managers, agents and customers. This ensures that orders are delivered on time, SLAs are being met and performance issues are resolved in time. 

Challenge #4 Inability to sync business operations (Manage integrations) 

A simple online ordering platform through the site no longer suffices. Syncing business operations to the dispatch network is of prime importance in the delivery business. The inventory management systems, warehouses, drivers must be linked to the same network for consistent deliveries. Most third-party delivery apps fail to take business operations into consideration which might keep customers from experiencing a seamless and well-informed delivery experience. 

For example, food delivery apps like Swiggy take tentative food preparation time into account to notify drivers so that their arrival at the restaurant is timed with the food’s arrival from the kitchen. The app also keeps the customers well informed by sending instant notifications about the order. 

Challenge #5 Fleet optimization 

Fleet management uses data-driven insights to decide which orders go to which fleet and when. Choosing the most optimal fleet for each order is important for satisfactory deliveries. Therefore businesses need more than just a third party delivery app. They need a system that schedules deliveries based on vehicle availability and capacity, cost of delivery, driver’s availability, type of subscription etc.

Challenge #6 Is the cost of third party delivery too high four business? (Cost efficient services) 

Even during times like these when businesses are operating on extremely thin profit margins, third party services charge exorbitant commission fees that get as high as 30-40%. Although third party platforms are more prevalent now than ever due to several pandemic-induced changes in operations, the increasingly high commission fee has become one of the most pressing concerns for businesses at the moment. In fact, analysts at Morgan Stanley even predicted that the rates could go as high as 40% for restaurants by 2022. 

The food delivery business is facing a major financial crunch at the moment which might lead them to shut their services after operating on bare minimum in months to follow.

Hence, switching to their own food delivery service app could help them strive in the tough markets. With Tookan, restaurant owners can manage end-to-end food deliveries. They can delight customers with a personalised app experience at a much affordable cost. 

How to approach third party delivery services

Even with an exorbitant transaction cost, the use of third party delivery services shot through the roof in the past few months. It became an essential revenue stream for businesses that were on the verge of a complete shutdown. Undoubtedly, third party delivery became an easy and streamlined approach for business owners to kickstart off-premises services. 

However, while the initial few months sailed smoothly, businesses now want a value-for-money service that offers nothing less than supreme customer experience. For this, business operators must consider an integrated delivery approach. Instead of outsourcing their services with no real-time visibility, they could start building their own delivery service app at a much lower price. Here are a few advantages of using a dispatch software to manage third party fleets. 
The world has introduced us to the real power of technology during its darkest period. And while we’re still experiencing this revolution, business owners must not fear another fall. With best dispatch management systems, one can start any business in less than a day’s time. So, if you’re really tired of not making any profits, here’s your one and only chance to enhance your delivery experience with end-to-end route planning, real time tracking and automated dispatch services.

And if you’re still not convinced, we suggest a free 14 day trial which gives businesses a fair chance to check its feasibility against the existing business modules.

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