Are all the food pictures your friends are sharing on social media making you hungry? Facebook food ordering is on its way to alleviate your hunger. Facebook is making it easier for you to order food from your favorite restaurants within the Facebook platform. With the introduction of a new option called “Order Food” you can complete the entire process, from ordering to checkout, from the main Facebook navigation.
The Convenience of Facebook Food Ordering
In an era of multitasking the ability to scroll through your Newsfeed and then order dinner all from within the same app is the ultimate convenience. And for Facebook users, this new feature is all about convenience. Users don’t even need to navigate through separate restaurant pages. Instead, all the restaurants are listed together based on the user’s location.
This latest offering is just another example of how Facebook is aiming to duplicate the functionality of other apps to keep them within its walls instead. Facebook has rolled out several of these conveniences recently, including a weather forecast feature, a networking section called ‘discover people’ that resembles some of LinkedIn’s capabilities, a travel section called ‘city guides,’ local government information through ‘town hall,’ an online jobs board, and fundraisers.
Now Facebook has set its sights on duplicating third-party delivery applications like GrubHub, DoorDash, UberEats, Yelp Eat24, or Amazon Prime. As consumers look for greater convenience with food delivery options, food ordering by mobile app, text messaging, the Internet grew by 18% in March from a year earlier. Mobile ordering is growing at a time when overall sales are low, with same-store sales for restaurants falling 1.1% in May from a year earlier. The digital ordering trend is causing restaurants to look to build or improve their apps.
How Facebook Food Ordering Works
Indicated by a knife and fork that appears blue-and-white on mobile and with an added plate on desktop, the new option lets Facebook users place food pickup and delivery orders from restaurants using delivery.com or Slice. You can find the icons under the “Explore” section labeled “Order Food.”
The Order Food feature aggregates all the supported restaurants together on one page. Similar to traditional food ordering sites, included on the list of restaurants will be a featured photo, price range, star ratings, and type of cuisine. It will also indicate whether delivery, pickup, or both options are available.
When you click on the ‘Order Food’ button you’ll be able to browse the menu, add items to your cart, edit your order, add a tip, and pay all within Facebook. After payment, you’ll be shown a confirmation screen letting you know a time frame when the order is expected to arrive or be ready for pickup. In addition to the confirmation screen you’ll also get a confirmation email.
The new feature builds on an agreement between Facebook and two food services, delivery.com and Slice, to let users place orders with supported restaurants directly from Facebook through the Order Food link. Delivery.com is an online delivery service for more than 10,000 local businesses while Slice is a local pizza app. Together the two food services handle the new ordering feature through Facebook.
Papa John’s is embracing food ordering through Facebook with its announcement that customers can place food orders directly through its Facebook page using a “Start Order” button where users can select from its menu of pizza, desserts, and side dishes. Ordering is also available in the site’s main navigation through the ‘Order Now’ option, both on desktop and on mobile. Papa John’s is offering Facebook customers 25% off regular menu prices with promo code: FBIX.
News of Papa John’s Facebook ordering could be a sign that Facebook’s “Order Food” rollout is starting to gain traction. It also shows that Papa John’s remains anxious to keep up with competitors who have also embraced a variety of digital ordering methods. Ordering through digital channels make up more than 60% of total U.S. sales for Papa John’s, and the pizza company recognizes that its success depends on reaching its customers through all available communication channels.
Availability of Facebook Food Ordering
Availability has been unreliable as the feature is just rolling out. Because the function is still in testing, not all Facebook users may see the option. Additionally, the option has been known to disappear and then reappear for users. At other times, it says that there are no locations nearby that can deliver. It’s not known whether location services need to be turned on for the mobile app to function properly. It’s also been speculated as to whether some particular setting prevents a list of the restaurants to show on the desktop app.
In the era of multi-tasking, Facebook’s “Order Food” is both convenient and a clever way to keep users within its own walls. Following digital ordering trends, when availability is expanded, this latest offering from Facebook is likely to be incredibly popular with users. With Papa John’s endorsement other restaurants would be wise to follow suit and go where the customers are hungry.