Why Delivery Apps Should Stop Measuring Everything And Focus On Their UX.

August 5, 2020
min to read
Janine Griffiths

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The coronavirus has sparked unprecedented change within the food delivery sector. Within months, food delivery marketplaces went from ‘nice to have’ to essential. As lockdown restrictions continue to get tighter, fears over public safety has increased demand for food delivery. It has also presented unexpected new challenges as more and more delivery apps jostle to fill the void.

The end result is that many of these companies get locked into an arms race to analyze and measure the ways they can keep pace with demand and maintain the lion’s share of the market. 

After all, if they can score the most leads, optimize conversion rates, and predict user behavior better than everyone else, they dominate.

The trouble is that drowning in data no longer gives you the edge it used to. The sheer availability of analytics tools means that your competitors will almost certainly have access to the same data. As the number of companies utilizing this data grows, the chances of your delivery company capturing the attention of locked-in consumers decreases in tandem.

Of course, that’s not to say that measuring data is not important. Of course it is. You just have to be discerning about which metrics you’re paying attention to. In other words, don't measure everything - instead, pay attention to the numbers that matter.

In this case, what matters is adding value to your customers by improving the user experience and customer service. If you can do this better than your competitors, only then do you stand out. 

How to Measure User Experience

So naturally the next question is, how do you measure user experience? To answer this, let’s take a look at 5 key things that you should consider when it comes to user experience.

Simple Onboarding

The onboarding process is a user’s first impression of your delivery app. Ensuring it is intuitive and easy to use, will result in improved user adoption. The general rule of thumb is this: if delivery apps are advertising a quick and easy service, it should not take more than a minute or two to create an account and activate it.

Moreover, the steps required to find information on your delivery app should be precise and easy to navigate. But it is not just the end user you should keep in mind. The other thing to consider is the ease with which the restaurants and takeaway providers can utilize your services. 

One way to streamline the onboarding process is to ensure the registration is as simple as possible. 

According to the latest industry benchmark report from lifecycle and marketing platform CleverTap, it takes users 22 minutes on average to register after the first app launch.

As a result, only 25 percent of users complete the signup process after the first app launch, while 22 percent of new users remain active after the first week.

Therefore, one of the key priorities should be improving the onboarding process.

How to Improve The Onboarding Process

There are several key metrics to look out for when attempting to improve the onboarding process. These are:

Time to register - with this being one of the main reasons that users unsubscribe from a food delivery app, it is one of the first metrics that should be measured. Ideally, users should spend no more than a few minutes getting up and running on the app. Any longer than that, and you risk losing customers. 

Average cost per user registration - another metric to pay attention to is the  average cost of getting a user to install and register on the app.

Launch or load time - with this you want to pay attention to the  average time it takes for the app to launch or load on a user’s device. Slow load times will simply prompt a user to look elsewhere.

Crash Rate - this measures the percentage of app loads that result in a crash. Fixing these types of bugs will ensure your service is as user friendly as it can be.

In addition to using the above benchmarks to measure the onboarding process, there are several other ways to improve the user experience.

One way is to welcome new users with a series of simple tips to help them navigate your app and reduce the time it takes to figure out how to use it.

It is also a good idea to add exit pop-ups and in-app notifications to encourage users to complete their registration and follow through with their purchase. 

Consider enlisting the services of a BPO provider that can aggregate and structure data to help extract useful insights from the customer information you have. Some worksharing services specialize in serving logistics and delivery companies and can also help with onboarding customers.

Restaurant Menu Searching Ease

The way you present your restaurant menus will have a major impact on your user experience. This is the reason it is important to provide an easy search experience.

A common frustration that customers experience when navigating restaurant menus within a food delivery app is having to click through too many tabs before actually seeing the menu items. Be sure to assess whether your current set up has a clean, user-friendly interface so users can easily find everything they need without too much effort.

The problem is that some of the most popular methods of extracting menu information (such as OCR) can sometimes interfere with the formatting and design of the menus. Worse still, it can result in inaccurate information due to images or data not being copied over correctly.

While most delivery companies use OCR software to extract menu data, this often requires several reviews at different stages of the process to ensure accuracy. This is perhaps one of the most time-consuming and recurring processes that many food delivery companies face.

One way around this problem is to use a worksharing service that also combines RPA and human oversight. Outsourcing repetitive workflows in this way not only helps you to enhance customer experience but also frees up time for your teams to focus on more mission-critical tasks.

User Engagement

Once users land on your app, the next step is to improve engagement. This will increase the likelihood of users not only staying on your app but also creating a profile and returning.

There are several ways you can measure the average user engagement. For example, you can analyse certain actions such as, how many times they search a menu, how long they stay on the website, and the time lag between when they first view a menu and when they make an order.

According to CleverTap, 35 percent of new users order a meal at least once within the first month of installing the app, while 86 percent of new users will stop using an app within 2 weeks of the first launch.

This means that for many food delivery businesses, the majority of customers that land on the app will eventually leave. 

One way to improve user engagement is to put personalization on the menu. Profiling your customers and making recommendations based on their previous views or orders increases the likelihood that they will spend more time on your app.

Personalized user preferences should measure things such as cuisine, delivery charges, delivery time and ratings.

This can be supplemented with push notifications and SMS messages that encourage customers to order dishes from their favorite restaurants in your app. 

Location Tracking

The ability to accurately track your user’s location is an essential function. It makes it easier to calculate delivery times and charges, plus it will also allow you to build accurate restaurant lists and categorize them within specific areas.

Some apps require a user to manually input their address before ordering takeout. The smarter apps use geo-location software to automatically detect a user’s location.

One of the best examples of this is Ubereats. For example, its location tracking features is so precise it can even detect whether you are inside or outside. Moreover, even if a user switches on their location, the app will ensure that the manually typed address does not get altered. This is because Ubereats wants to ensure the accuracy of location regardless of whether geo location is switched on or off. 

It is just one example of how delivery companies can use intelligent geo-tracking to add personalization based upon location.

But if you really want to rise to the top of the pile when it comes to enhancing customer experience, you should also consider adding live location tracking so that your customers can see the progress of their deliveries in real-time. This feature alone can reduce the need for customers to get in touch with either the app or the food provider to follow up on deliveries.

Of course, it goes without saying that you will also need to have a comprehensive lists of restaurants and their location for this to work. Adding and updating these can be a lengthy and tedious process that takes time away from enhancing customer experience.

So consider using a worksharing service such as Invisible, which can rapidly build, check and automate entire data sets of restaurants, location, contact details and other key pieces of data. We can also automate and check customer outreach workflows to ensure that the appropriate notifications are sent to your customers.

Customer Support

Customers should also be provided with live support and notifications to help resolve any queries within a timely manner. The faster the reply, the happier the customer!

According to a study by American Express, 40% of customers want customer service reps to take care of their needs faster. 

However, speeding up response times and recruiting new employees to provide support is easier said than done. You may or may not have the bandwidth to offer live support. Some of the challenges associated with notifications include software errors and bugs resulting in messages not being sent or received, encryption issues, problems with authentication and incorrect data. 

A solid infrastructure is needed to track messages, view contact history and resolve errors, but the costs of introducing new technology or updating existing infrastructures can be off-putting to delivery startups.

If this is the case, consider outsourcing aspects of your customer support to an RPA worksharing provider that can take on the grunt work of sending and tracking notifications and replies.


The cost of dropping the ball on customer experience can be severe. Unsurprisingly, research from Bain & Company showed that a customer is four times more likely to switch a competitor if the problem they're having is service-based.

Separate analysis from Salesforce showed that 62% of customers say they share their bad experiences with others.

The message is clear: the number one thing that can separate you from the multiple big and small food delivery companies is your customer service.

This is why blindly measuring data points without filtering it through the perspectives of your users will not prove to be very insightful.

Yet this is apparently what many businesses are doing. Alarming research from NewVantage Partners’ showed that 52% admit that they are not competing on data and analytics.

So while terms such as ‘big data’ and ‘analytics’ are hardly groundbreaking to food delivery startups, aggregating the information alone is not enough to remain competitive. 

And when there’s a problem in the order management because of bad data, this has a negative impact on the customer experience.

At best, a customer’s order will be late. In the worst case scenario, it may never arrive. And there are still cases that fall into a grey area, where the problem has technically been resolved, but the issue that caused the problem in the first place resulted in eroded trust and damaged your reputation in the customer's eyes.

You also risk alienating the restaurants and providers that you partner with.

Market research firm Zion & Zion found that 62% of consumers who receive a bad food delivery experience often blame both the delivery company and the restaurant.

However,  the five pillars of user experience outlined above, gives you a complete breakdown of how to avoid the worst case scenarios by paying attention to the metrics that matter.

Hayley Darden Marketing Invisible Technologies
Janine Griffiths
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