There was once a time when ordering a takeaway felt like less of an event and more of a lazy decision when we couldn’t be bothered cooking or there was no food in the house. Treating ourselves to a night of indulgence involved heading down to your favourite restaurants. How times have changed!
The country’s love of food deliveries has blossomed since 2020. Now, takeaways are the perfect excuse to gather friends for an evening of socialising, films and fun.
Food businesses had fleeting thoughts of panic with the first lockdown announcements. But, like the hardy Brits we are, we adapted our services and took business online to the best food delivery apps.
Some say this thriving online business model makes it easier for startups to break their way into the industry, and we’re in agreement!
For startups looking to join the foodie heavyweights or home food businesses hoping to scale up operations to the next level, here are the best food delivery services in the UK for sellers!
Leading services for delivery only restaurants
A 2021 survey by Which? discovered seven out of 10 people use food delivery apps, and the average 30-year-old UK resident spends around £8.50 per week on takeaways, statistics that are only increasing as time goes on.
With the industry value in its billions, it’s no surprise more and more mobile apps are cropping up. Do they stand the test of time, or do the OG’s reign supreme? Based on service fees, commission, reach and more, here’s our pick of the best delivery apps to sell fast food on!
- Food Hub
It was in 2014 when Uber decided to launch UberEats in Santa Monica. Due to the existent notoriety of the taxi app Uber, it wasn’t before long that UberEats took over the world of food delivery apps, too.
It was a brand that had opportunities for international marketing at its disposal, and it was a company that customers were familiar with and therefore felt comfortable ordering. But also, it was a platform that restaurants and food businesses felt comfortable partnering with from the get-go.
As of 2021, UberEats has a 27% market share of the UK’s food delivery app market, an impressive feat falling only behind JustEat, and they operate within all major cities in the country. That’s a lot of hungry customers at your fingertips!
So, let’s have a look at the costs associated with selling your food on Uber Eats;
UberEats has a £350 one-time activation fee, which partners pay when they first sign up for the service. UberEats states this cost covers a welcome kit, a tablet, restaurant ordering software, menu photoshoot and set-up support from their teams. On a few occasions throughout the year, UberEats will waiver this activation fee, meaning you will receive the above for no additional cost!
UberEats commission rates
UberEats calculates a Marketplace Fee based on the percentage of each restaurant order placed using the app. This fee varies depending on how the restaurant chooses to have its orders delivered, but we’ve found it is commonly around the 30% mark. Meaning restaurants selling via the app pay a 30% commission rate on every order they fulfil.
So for orders of £30, restaurants pay £9 to UberEats.
Other benefits for sellers
- Restaurant partners of UberEats are not responsible for paying for delivery. The customer placing the order covers the delivery fees.
- UberEats pays for all transaction fees on orders placed via the mobile app.
- UberEats uses promotional offers and marketing strategies to get your brand in front of a new customer base, such as special promotions and loyalty programmes.
- Simple order management that you can typically integrate with your existing POS system.
- Access to insightful and actionable data such as sales, service quality and customer satisfaction.
Deliveroo is a British-owned company founded in London in 2013. The founder’s intention behind Deliveroo was to give chains or local restaurants that didn’t usually offer delivery the opportunity to broaden their horizons and sell their menu as takeout.
Despite being a cheerleader and advocate of independent brands, Deliveroo also works with some of the UK’s biggest chain restaurants and grocery stores, most working exclusively with the Deliveroo app.
Deliveroo lacked the initial brand awareness that UberEats had, taking them a little longer to reach their status as an industry leader, but they’re certainly sitting towards the top of the pack in 2021.
In the UK, Deliveroo has over 148,000 partners, 180,000 delivery drivers, an average 20 minute delivery time and holds a 26% market share.
The success of the food delivery app has encouraged the birth of Deliveroo Editions, a subsidiary operation that is forming dark kitchen spaces to rent.
Deliveroo’s joining fee was once a hefty £425. However, when that pandemic hit and the hospitality industries were among the hardest hit, Deliveroo dropped this one-off significantly to just £50. It is unknown whether this fee will increase back to pre-pandemic prices when the industry is recuperating.
Similarly to UberEats, Deliveroo includes a menu photoshoot, a tablet and restaurant software in this joining fee; everything you need to start selling on the app.
Deliveroo commission rates
Deliveroo’s standard commission rates are not easily accessible online, but we have a rough guide. We believe that Deliveroo’s commission changes per order, between 20 and 30%, with average food orders in the 20 – 25% range.
Additional seller benefits
- Discounted delivery-proof, branded packaging for every dish
- Deliveroo finds and negotiates with suppliers and passes the discounts straight onto its partners
- In-app marketing tools help you reach a wider pool of customers
- Offers a signature service, with additional benefits to the standard partnership
Just Eat is the original of our best online food ordering platforms, founded in Denmark in 2001. When it arrived in the UK in 2006, Just Eat was the first of its kind. Now also an ios and android app, the nation’s favourite foodie platform has gone from strength to strength.
Just Eat found it simple to get nearby restaurants to sign up to their platform because of their focus on technology. Other solutions in 2005 involved faxing orders and sending automated phone orders, whereas Just Eat has a simple fix. The Just-Connect box linked businesses directly to the online ordering platform, making managing orders much simpler than the competitors.
Although at one point it seemed that UberEats or Deliveroo might overtake the industry, Just Eat tweaked its processes and remained current. Just Eat holds 45% of the market share as of 2021, with the closest competitor, UberEats, only holding 27%.
Just Eat has a one-off joining fee of £295 (excluding VAT), but you don’t need to pay this fee upfront, which is a bonus for many startups and small businesses. Although you can pay it upfront if you have the funds, Just Eat can deduct a percentage from customer orders until you pay off the fee in full, if you prefer.
JustEat commission rates
Just Eat has a low commission fee of 14% (excluding VAT) on every order you receive. For example, a £20 order will receive a £3.36 charge; a £2.80 commission plus a 56p VAT. Just Eat adds a 50p admin charge to every order, too, but the customer pays this.
Additional seller benefits
- An Orderpad tablet and printer for easy order management
- Personalised data, insights and business best practice
- Up to 7% cash back at Booker and Makro
- Up to £1,000 off electric delivery bikes and scooters
- An average saving of £1,150 a year on energy bills
If you’re in need of a state-of-the art delivery only kitchen to kick-start your London food business, look no further than Dephna. We have flexible commercial kitchen rentals in prime North West London locations, perfect for a busy delivery radius!