The pandemic ushered in a new era of digitization, transforming industries and encouraging people to go online for everything from healthcare to finance to gaming. On-demand delivery, specifically food delivery, was no exception; the proliferation of existing technology and the development of new tech saw sweeping changes to the industry.
For example, due to shelter-in-place orders and other incentives to adopt new technology, more users adopted new tech than ever before. This set the stage for a communications revamp in the food delivery industry – after all, while speed and convenience are key factors to success, so is the ease of communication and coordination between delivery drivers and customers. During the recently concluded 2022 Home Delivery World Expo in Philadelphia, industry experts along with Alex Ross, VP of Business Development at Shipt, and our very own Narayan Mani, Strategic Account Executive, sat down to discuss this pertinent issue.
The ultrafast delivery vision
Ultrafast delivery is a growing trend and delivery providers are competing with each other to determine who can bring to market the fastest possible delivery service. The ultrafast vision is to replace the local grocery store the way Uber disrupted car ownership. Ultrafast delivery services want to change shopping behavior by turning groceries into something summoned at the touch of a button rather than something planned and scheduled.
Given the on-demand nature which entails more trips, delivery companies are trying to get goods to a consumer in a more sustainable way. As Alex puts it, “We don’t want drivers waiting for orders, we want orders waiting for drivers.” To do this, planning and route optimization based on advanced information could help delivery providers to build more efficient routes. Therefore, they can ultimately extend a price point to the merchant that is more competitive than the rates they are paying for ground shipping.
Improving customer experiences with in-app chat
One of the differentiators of ultrafast delivery service companies is the customer experience. For an on-demand customer, timing is everything. Therefore, resolving order issues immediately is critical to business success and customer satisfaction.
Ultrafast delivery companies want to improve business metrics which are primarily around order cancellations. In the food delivery space, if the order leaves the restaurant, but does not get to the customer due to order issues, the cost goes to the vendor. This may be less than 1%, but when you have multiple order cancellations, that adds up to a significant amount. For grocery delivery, order substitutions are also important. When a customer can easily communicate with the store or shopper about a substitution, this ease of communication increases CSAT and reduces cancellations.
“To reduce order cancellations, you improve message delivery rates, and that’s what in-app chat does,” Narayan said during the discussion. “SMS is inherently not secure. When you don’t want to share your phone number with the delivery person, in-app chat comes to the rescue.” Timely and transparent communication between the delivery driver and customer can prevent customer service calls and escalations when delivery is running late; after all, little things can have a major impact. In-app chat is also a safer and more accurate way to connect delivery drivers to customers.
Sendbird helps the fastest-growing rideshare & delivery companies connect drivers, consumers, and support agents within their own mobile app to ensure order completion. Alex commented, “When you start talking about a delivery promise of 15-20 minutes, and the lead time that the consumer is ultimately giving you to meet that promise, the ability to show up on time is much harder. But with the integration with Sendbird, we are able to save the sale for the consumer and save the sale for the retailer.” Because of the ability to communicate with the consumer in real-time, whether it be about substitutions or additions to the order, being able to effectively communicate throughout the experience is critical in ensuring the quality of the experience. With streamlined communication, the customer is on the path to ultimately getting what they’re looking for!
Real-time communication on-demand for ultrafast delivery
In-app messaging helps coordinate both sides of the delivery experience, bringing real-time and transparent communication to your user experience. With in-app chat, you can reduce customer service calls and order cancellations while empowering your supply side to communicate openly and safely so they can be as successful as possible. With Sendbird’s chat and messaging API and SDK, you can launch in-app messaging and concentrate valuable engineering resources on your app’s market differentiators.
Building feature-rich chat with Sendbird is easy – check out our handy tutorials and docs! In fact, with our UIKit for chat, you can send your first message in mere minutes. For even more resources and information about on-demand delivery, visit this page.
Why not get started today with a free trial and take Sendbird for a spin? ✨