Five-Step Process to Build an On-Demand Food Delivery App Like UberEats & Grubhub

30 Nov 2022 | Mobile App Development


On-demand food delivery apps like Grubhub & UberEats have become great for restaurant owners and entrepreneurs. Even better, such apps became increasingly significant during the COVID-19 pandemic, where they saved thousands of business owners from shutting down their food businesses.

Now, the demand for food delivery apps has been gradually rising as more people transition from traditional eating habits to modern ways of eating out. Many users appreciate the convenience of enjoying a good meal in the comfort of their homes.

Whether a restaurant owner or an aggregator, developing an on-demand food delivery app is a win-win deal. Therefore, this is a perfect time for you to create an app to fill this growing demand gap.

This blog will discuss the three business models for food delivery apps and the five-step process of building an on-demand food delivery application. That way, you will have sufficient knowledge to develop a functional and profitable app for your business.

So, let’s dive in.

Types of food delivery apps based on their business models

Food ordering and delivery platforms come in numerous forms. These apps are easily adjustable according to business goals and requirements. Moreover, these apps offer services in different locations without boundaries. So, let’s check a few types of food delivery applications:

Order Only Model

The orders-only model allows interaction between customers and local restaurants. Multiple restaurants can sign up to use these apps to provide food delivery services that can increase their order rates.

As an app owner, you get a commission for every order a restaurant gets through your app. One of the best things about this model is that you are not responsible for the food delivery logistics.

Because you are not responsible for the logistics, you can control delivery speed, food quality, and service level, which can be a significant downside. Grubhub, Zomato, and Deliveroo are examples of this model.

Order & Delivery Model

This business model handles both food orders and delivery. That means the app owner will be responsible for receiving food orders and delivering them to the users.

Like the Orders-only, multiple restaurants from the areas where the app owners operate their businesses can sign up to use the service. It is the most convenient for most business owners as they will be in charge of only the food preparation.

With the order and delivery model type, you will earn a commission from the restaurant for every order and delivery fees for all the orders fulfilled. Therefore, you will get more revenue from this model than the orders-only.

With this app type, you can control the delivery speed and service level but not the food quality. Examples of such apps include UberEats and DoorDash.

The Fully Integrated Model

If you need to develop an app that controls everything from food preparation to delivery, a fully integrated app model type is ideal for you. This app model type is where the app owner is in charge of everything from food preparation to service quality and delivery speed.

The fully integrated model has the most features that you should build. You should create a system to facilitate food preparation, ordering, and delivery. This app model will also allow swift communication between the different areas of this food delivery model.

As an app owner, you will earn from the food and the delivery; therefore, the profit potential will be much higher than the other two models. Examples of apps using this model include Dominos Pizza, Metabolic Meals, and Eat Purely.

5 Steps to develop a food delivery app like Grubhub

The development process of an app like Grubhub might seem the same for all apps, but that’s not usually the case. You need to design your app in a way users find convenient to use.

In this section, we will discuss the whole process of creating a food delivery application. So, let’s dive in!

Research your target audience

To make a good food delivery app, the first step you need to take is to research more about your target audience. Because when you know your audience well, you can build an app that ideally meets your target users’ needs.

  • There are several ways to learn about your target audience info, which will shape your app’s design and functionality. To understand your audience better, you can profile them by the following criteria or questions:
  • What are your user’s social characteristics? It may include income, gender, nationality, and age.
  • What specific problems will your app solve for a potential customer?
  • What emotion will your application evoke in customers?
  • Why should customers choose your platform over those of others?

More importantly, you can check the current user statistics for delivery apps like Grubhub to inform your research. Get more info about the demographics, user interests, and preferred platforms.

Also, it is even better if you will learn how to address the challenges users can face accessing your app. For example, knowing about potential app vulnerabilities, poor user interfaces, and weak internet connections can help you focus your efforts on avoiding them.

Thus, if you get clear about all these points, you are better off outlining the features your target users want.

Deal with the challenges in the food delivery market

Dealing with common food delivery business challenges from the start can be a secret to your company’s success. Numerous issues can prevent you or even stop you from developing the app that users will love.

Some of the few challenges that you can start with may include the following:

Tightening competition

Before entering the market, you can see that the big players are already competing tightly in the industry. It may even appear impossible that the market will penetrate this market successfully. The competition is just high, and there seems to be little room for the new players.

However, there is the other side to the story. The competition is higher, and it will be one of your biggest challenges to overcome. The good news is that many other factors are in your favour.

First, you are meeting the challenges the other players do not consider addressing. Second, you probably found a competitive advantage over the others, and third, you are addressing specific concerns for your users. So, don’t panic yet; there is so much to gain than to lose.

Shifting customer preferences

Your desire is probably to provide the best possible value to your customers based on their needs and preferences.

However, it’s becoming more challenging to know the actual user’s needs, as big boys in the industry keep elevating their marketing game to fit their desires and expectations. And, when marketing becomes manipulative, it’s hard to keep up with the new market demands.

So, even though you should employ marketing strategies that burn your customer’s order friction, aim to understand your users better to provide exactly what they need or desire. That way, you will proactively handle your customer’s expectations, leading to customer satisfaction.

There are countless more challenges that you can face, but with the right mindset, you will overcome them. Thankfully, many areas have better odds for success with fewer challenges to overcome. In any way, these challenges are the pathway to successful apps.

Outline the key features of your Grubhub-like app

The next step to creating an app like Grubhub is to write out the features for your app. A food delivery app can have two to three types of users: customers, food providers, and logistics. So, the kind of app you choose should cater to all of its users’ needs.

But before we dive into the features, it is crucial to mention that you should ensure that you develop a fantastic user interface (UI). An intuitive user interface is easy to use, and an on-demand food delivery app requires an interface that allows users to explore and access whatever they need efficiently. So, you must ensure that the development team gets this feature right for the others to function effectively.

Now, let’s check out the fundamental features your app should have:

User profiles

Your food delivery app should allow users to signup, sign in and customize their profiles. While it shouldn’t be mandatory, user profiles will make everything easier. Asking for pickup addresses and usernames can be sufficient; however, spam issues can quickly escalate, so you need to identify users specifically to reduce such cases.

Menu screen

A food delivery app should display what it offers. You can create a home screen highlighting the main menus from your restaurant or the partners. The design of these pages should be unique to you, but you should ensure that users get all the info they need, like ratings & feedback, address, contact, and more.

After these screens, users should get more details about the food or restaurants they selected from the menu screens. It’s also a great place for marketing. You can easily include special offers like “Popular today,” “Fish discount week offers,” “Order one, Get two,” and so on.

Searching and filtering

A powerful search feature makes it easier for users to find what they need. This feature, alongside filters, saves users time and allows them to find eateries they want based on different factors like cost, food categories, and menu options, among others.

Shopping cart and checkout pages

The shopping cart and checkout features allow users to place and view their orders. Users can review their order details, like dishes, prices, quality, delivery address, comments, and more.

Payment options

Another critical feature of your food delivery app is to allow users to choose and use their preferred payment option for their orders. Whether you offer pay-on-delivery or pay-before services, dozens of online payment options are available, so you should provide most of them as many users prefer using them.

These payment options may include Apple or Google Pay, PayPal, debit and credit cards, etc. Depending on your location, some options could be more popular than others, so you must include them to meet the needs of your users.

Delivery Tracking

When users place their orders, they probably expect to monitor their delivery status. So, it is a good idea to develop real-time delivery tracking on your app. That way, users can see the progress of the orders to manage their delivery expectations.

Hire the right company that offers on-demand food delivery app development

A food delivery app may require a lot of custom features to develop. These custom features require a team of experts to build and deliver an app with the design and functionality you need. So, you should hire a mobile app development firm or developers with extensive experience if you do not have in-house developers.

Choosing the right company, however, is not easy. You need to find an ideal company that will align with your goals and budget. The company should also have a remarkable talent who will help you build a powerful app for your company.

In the first step, we discussed researching more about your users and their needs. In this step, you should communicate them clearly to the development team whenever necessary. This info could include your monetization strategy, priorities, business models, and more.

Furthermore, your research will be helpful during the discovery phase of your app project. Let the developers know your preferred features, user roles, technology stack, and budget. You should discuss your app requirements thoroughly with your development team and stakeholders so that your expectations will match the deliverables.

Estimate the cost of building an on-demand delivery app

Software development firms and developers charge differently for their services. Depending on several factors, the average hourly cost for building an on-demand app can range from $10 to $80+.

Cost is a significant factor that you must consider when developing your app. Suppose you don’t take the costs seriously. In that case, app costs can quickly escalate during development, yet still, you get a poor-quality app. Thankfully, many companies provide better cost estimations, which can help you determine if it’s worth your investment.

Even so, app cost estimation will remain an estimate. So, it doesn’t tell everything about the cost details. Numerous factors go into the actual development that can affect the overall costs of your project. So, be prepared for some differences.

While you should focus on finding an app development company with lower app development costs, be sure not to compromise the quality of your app deliverables. If you need more discussion on the cost of your app, contact us today, and we will help you.

Let Aveo Software build a powerful app for your food delivery business.

Aveo Software is ready to bring your app idea to reality. We can help you build your on-demand food delivery mobile application. If you are interested in developing an app for your business, we can deliver it.

So, let’s build an app for you to take your food delivery business to the next level. Click here to schedule a free consultation with us now.