How to Leverage Technology for Frictionless Food Delivery Services after COVID

Pizza delivery person wearing red jacket, cycling helmet, protective face mask and surgical gloves, scanning bar code on customers smart phone and making a quick and easy contactless payment
Featured image credit: miodrag ignjatovic/

The outbreak of COVID-19 has made people switch to or prefer online food ordering. According to Statista, 41.7% of the respondents were willing to buy restaurant food online while confined to their homes due to the pandemic.

That might seem like good news, the downside is delivery.

You need to deliver more orders with the same number of vehicles and drivers. And, this is not the right time to shell out a lot of money to purchase more vehicles and hire extra drivers.

Doing so now will decrease your profit margins and waste your valuable time in the form of hiring, training, transitioning, monitoring, and so on.

This is why you need technology to automate or streamline your food delivery service operations. That’s the only trump card you can use to become the top food delivery service in your area.

But, what technology solutions are available for local restaurants that offer delivery services?

How can emerging technologies help you cope with the increased food delivery sales?

How can technology help you make contact-less delivery?

We answer all this in this article.

Read on if you want to make your meal delivery, grocery delivery services, or any other delivery services seamless.

Adopt Route Optimization Software

Your drivers need to make more deliveries in time to cover the maximum number of orders. That’s only possible when you plan accurate routes for your drivers so that they never get stuck on the road. So, you need route optimization software.

Such software puts your route planning process on autopilot. You just need to upload the list of customer addresses and the delivery planner will provide you with well-optimized routes with free driving directions from one place to another for your drivers in 30 seconds.

The software even factors in traffic, weather, sunrise and sunset, one-ways, left-turns, and any other constraint that could make your drivers stuck on the road. In this way, you never need to worry about that again.

You can also share the routes directly with the drivers from the delivery planning system and ensure a balanced workload. And, any changes you make to a route that has already been planned will automatically reflect and be synchronized on the delivery route planner app on drivers’ mobile devices. Isn’t that amazing?

You can even re-optimize the routes and reroute any affected deliveries due to some unanticipated circumstances to avoid any delays.

There are many other powerful features that a multi-stop route planner app offers. These include:

  • eSignature for contact-free proof of delivery
  • Driver breaks to make sure your drivers do not get fatigued
  • Geocoding for address verification
  • Geofencing to automate the check-in and check-out process
  • Customer portal to help your customers check the delivery statuses on their own

To learn more about the benefits of a delivery route planner, read about the nine benefits of investing in dynamic routing technology.


Want To See For Yourself How Route4Me Can Boost Your Profits?

Whether you want to slash the time it takes you to plan routes for your drivers, increase the number of stops they can make, or keep your customers satisfied knowing that your drivers show up on time… Route4Me helps you achieve that!

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Use GPS Tracking Software

Planning well-optimized routes is only one step in ensuring on-time deliveries. You also need to make sure your drivers follow the routes and get help whenever they get stuck due to some unfortunate circumstances. So, you need a commercial GPS tracker.

GPS tracking software helps you monitor your drivers’ activities on the road in real-time.

In this way, if they deviate from the planned routes, take longer routes, make personal stops or slack off, you’ll know about it as soon as it happens. You can then take the necessary steps to rectify their behavior.

Moreover, you can keep a check on aggressive driving habits, such as speeding, harsh braking, sudden acceleration, and idling so that you can protect them from potential road mishaps and protect your business from unnecessary legal, medical, and repair costs.

Add to that the money you’ll save by avoiding delayed deliveries due to accidents.

You can either opt for a standalone GPS tracking system or use advanced GPS routing software that has a vehicle tracking feature integrated. If you go for the latter option, you’ll save money by investing in one app, eliminating the need to manage two separate apps.

Explore Drone Delivery

Drone delivery might sound like a high-tech solution, but as contactless delivery services become the norm, drones could become a great solution for offering safe and fast food delivery services.

The use of drone technology, which has thus far been limited to small deliveries (mostly for medical deliveries), aerial photography, law enforcement, and military operations, is now increasingly being adopted by grocery delivery companies.

For example, Google’s parent company Alphabet and Wing are becoming real saviors in this crisis. America saw Wing’s testing of shipments in rural Christiansburg in October.

According to Bloomberg reports, the Virginian town has recorded doubled delivery figures, while rural Virginia witnessed a dramatic increase in customer growth in this pandemic.

Wing is also helping local businesses flourish during this crisis. Mockingbird Café, a local café, has recorded a rise in the sales of its pastries by 50% on the first weekend of collaboration with Wing. Brugh Coffee, another local business, also saw its sales of cold brew double since Wing started its delivery.

Route4Me delivery route software can help you with accurate drone route optimization, with the addresses and drone capacities plugged in.

Route4Me mapping and routing software can even help customize the behavior of the drones.

For example, you could set it up so that your drones perform a particular maneuver when they reach a specific altitude, define capacity constraints, and set a maximum route length to establish a point-of-no-return distance.

To learn more about drone delivery benefits and its capabilities, read our article: Drone Delivery: Need of the Hour?

Go For Food Delivery Robots

Food delivery robots is another innovative technology solution that you can try. These robots are already being used to deliver food orders to customers primarily in Northern California on a limited scale.

Small service robots present themselves in restaurants, get loaded with food, and then travel to hungry patrons in nearby locations. However, a food delivery robot cannot carry heavyweights and is meant for a minimum order.

While the food delivery robot is on the way to making a delivery, its compartment is locked so that nobody can steal the food or tamper with it.

So, you don’t need to worry about theft or security. When the robot arrives at its destination, a text message with a link is sent to the mobile phone of the customer which the customer can click to unlock the robot’s compartment.

The robot also has cameras all around it, offering a 360-degree view and it can overcome a variety of obstacles. It can even navigate around any obstacle, avoid collisions with people, and climb curbs by lifting its wheels one by one until it makes its way onto the sidewalk.

Conclusion about Leveraging Technology for Food Delivery Services

The investments required to deliver as per customer expectations and the extra costs of managing a food delivery service are putting many food businesses under pressure. But, the companies that will ride out the initial storm by leveraging technology will benefit in the long run.

Technology is constantly making delivery processes better and more efficient and adopting new and evolving technology is the way to the future.

So, do you have any questions about how to use technology to offer an impeccable and frictionless food delivery service?


Want To See For Yourself How Route4Me Can Boost Your Profits?

Whether you want to slash the time it takes you to plan routes for your drivers, increase the number of stops they can make, or keep your customers satisfied knowing that your drivers show up on time… Route4Me helps you achieve that!

Start Free 7 Day Trial

About author: Rahul Dasgupta

Rahul Dasgupta is a content writer with over 20 years of work experience. He holds a master’s degree in computer science and has written thousands of blog posts on route planning and scheduling, making it easy for readers to learn about these complex topics. Rahul enjoys playing tennis in his spare time and loves cuddling with his pet labrador Shinu. Rahul is a big fan of Roger Federer, Messi, and Bill Gates - he admires their drive to be the best at what they do and their philanthropic efforts.


About Route4Me

Route4Me has over 40,000 customers globally. Route4Me's Android and iPhone mobile apps have been downloaded over 2 million times since 2009. Extremely easy-to-use, Route4Me's apps create optimized routes, synchronize routes to mobile devices, enable communication with drivers and customers, offer turn-by-turn directions, delivery confirmation, and more. Behind the scenes, Route4Me's operational optimization platform combines high-performance algorithms with data science, machine learning, and big data to plan, optimize, and analyze routes of almost any size in real-time.