How to create a food ordering app

The COVID-19 pandemic resulted in more demand for food delivery, and restaurant owners either had to use one of the existing online food ordering apps or create their own to respond to that demand. While food delivery apps like Uber Eats, GrubHub, and DoorDash have their benefits, developing your own mobile app gives you more control over the customer experience and the delivery process.

Thanks to platforms that let you develop apps without coding, app development has become a task that any business owner can tackle.

Before you get into the details of food delivery app development, start by outlining the fields that your app will need to include. Consider the following online food delivery fields that are often essential:

  • Customer name
  • Delivery address
  • Customer phone
  • Food selection fields
  • Food customization/add-on fields
  • Field for additional customer notes
  • Verification of whether the customer is enrolled in a customer loyalty program
  • Payment information fields

The payment information fields that you include will depend on your accepted payment options, such as Stripe, PayPal, and credit cards.

Use the right platform

The app builder that you use to develop your app can be key to its success. A budget-friendly, user-friendly platform is a must, but you also need one that offers the functionality and versatility necessary to build an app that works well.

With Jotform Apps, you can develop apps that work on both Android and iOS devices, and the process is easy. You can build apps for your business without any coding, and with each app, you can add elements like forms, links, widgets, and your branding.

The result is a fully customized app that you can download to any device. You can also share it on your website via a QR code so your customers can download the app onto their phone, tablet, or computer for a smoother and faster ordering process.

Best of all, Jotform Apps is free, so you won’t find a more affordable mobile app development platform.

Get started with Jotform

To get started building your app with Jotform, create a free account.

Next, create an online order form that includes all of the form fields identified above, plus any others you might want. Jotform’s drag-and-drop Form Builder makes this process simple and fast.

Choose an app template, like the food delivery app, catering app, or local food app. Then you can easily add your order form to the app by clicking the Add Element button. Jotform offers more than 300 customizable app templates that can streamline the process of building your app.

Jotform Apps' Food Delivery App
Jotform Apps’ Food Delivery App

Alternatively, you can build the app from scratch on your own. You can add elements and widgets like buttons, maps, and dividers to create the app that best works for your business and your audience.

You can also share documents — like your menu — with your audience through your app.

Once you’ve got the basic elements in place, you can customize the app’s appearance. Change the design to reflect your branding, upload your logo, and add your branding colors to the app for a cohesive, professional look.

With Jotform, you can connect your app with more than 30 payment methods and gateways, including popular options like PayPal, Square, and Stripe. You can collect debit or credit card payments or ACH payments, giving customers an easy and convenient user experience.

Once you’ve completed your app, you can share it on your website, through email, on social media with a link, and via QR codes. As customers complete their orders, all of those submissions will be securely stored in Jotform Tables for efficient order management that helps ensure a smooth delivery process.

Consider these tips for successful app development

Developing an app for your restaurant business or food service operation means you’ll take charge of every aspect of the ordering system and delivery model. You can showcase your food in the best ways possible, offer delivery specials, and develop another way to appeal to customers during the pandemic.

But to create a successful app, you’ll need to think carefully about how to make one that’s easy to use while keeping development costs down. That’s easy with Jotform, since its app builder is highly flexible yet also highly affordable.

As you design your app, keep your customers in mind. Think about the dishes that are most popular in your restaurant, and be sure to accept the payment gateways that customers use most often. Don’t forget to keep your branding consistent so customers will immediately recognize that the app belongs to your business.

Don’t overlook the importance of diligently testing your app. You don’t want to release and publicize a new app, only to have customers run into issues with ordering. Get your friends and family to test every step of the process, including downloading the app on different devices, placing orders, and evaluating delivery times.

With plenty of preparation and testing, you can ensure that your app is ready to use, and you’ll have a tool that can help drive sales.

Photo by Nataliya Vaitkevich from Pexels

AUTHOR
A journalist and digital consultant, John Boitnott has worked for TV, newspapers, radio, and Internet companies for 25 years. He’s written for Inc.com, Fast Company, NBC, Entrepreneur, USA Today, and Business Insider, among others.

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