In the United Kingdom, food delivery company Just Eat reported a huge 600% increase in orders for the first couple of months in 2021 compared to the same period in 2020. It’s apparent that online takeaways boom in lockdown.
It goes without saying that this is because of the lockdown measures that were in place at the beginning of 2021, compared to January and February 2020 before the world effectively shutdown due to coronavirus. In the UK during January and February 2021, all non-essential businesses were forced to close their doors as the country entered its third national lockdown. Therefore, once again, the only way that customers were able to get their hands on their favourite fast food was through takeaway options.
Online Takeaways Boom in Lockdown
The pandemic as accelerated the move to online sales, rather than completely changing its course, takeaways – and even more up-market restaurants – had been offering delivery options. Heavyweights such as McDonald’s, Burger King and KFC have hopped on the bandwagon, moves which had been met with huge popularity and they are likely to continue offering their menu through such third-party apps.
Moving Out of the Pandemic
The pandemic has brought about several new ways of working, including moves towards remote working patterns and more. We have been asked to find ways of continuing to go about life without stepping foot outside of the house and it is through forging these new convenient attitudes that we have been successful in doing so.
Moving out of the pandemic, with countries vaccinating their population, life is slowly beginning to return to some form of normalcy and businesses are once again opening their doors. However, as we have spent a year getting used to being able to order our favourite takeaways and having them delivered to our doors, what is the incentive? Have our behaviours changed forever?
The answer is likely to be a combination of yes and no. Yes, in the way that businesses will continue to offer delivery options and no because there will always be those who enjoy the experience of going out to a restaurant. During the summer of 2020, when restrictions were temporarily eased, restaurants enjoyed huge demand for service which is a sign that consumers are itching to get back to what they know.
How Apps are Being Used Elsewhere
Food apps are being used in more ways than allowing customers to order a pizza without leaving the house as businesses and event promoters are not harnessing this capability in other ways. As the hospitality sector reopens, it reopens under certain restrictions – customers, at the time of writing, are restricted to table service only. That means getting up and walking around is discouraged.
Step forward apps, that can be used for settings allowing for customers to order food and drink to their table. Even before the pandemic lockdown, chains such as Wetherspoons had been using table service apps to add another form of service to their customers. That saved customers from having to queue at the bar, trying to grab the barman/woman’s attention and, of course, navigating a busy setting without dropping their round.
Businesses such as NOQ Group are providing food apps for restaurants, events, and other venues with a view to simplifying the way in which business is conducted. With the pandemic still having an effect, it is likely that such apps will be a necessity if we are to get back to some kind of normality.