What you need to know

Restaurants across the foodservice industry from fast food to fine dining are continuing to feed consumer demand for more delivery and convenient ordering options. While ordering by telephone remains a top off-premise ordering method, it is dropping in popularity as more customers are ordering directly from restaurant websites or mobile apps. The majority of consumers prefer to order directly from restaurants with third party delivery company usage concentrated among younger consumers, but still rising across generations. This continued growth of online ordering and delivery proves that it is not a fad, but an industry shift that restaurants must adapt to or risk losing relevancy.


This Report covers the use of/attitudes surrounding restaurant delivery and carry out in general as well as third party delivery companies. It covers changes in the restaurant online ordering market including third party delivery companies’ operations and marketing campaigns. While pizza restaurant delivery is covered in the Report, pizza restaurants are not the focus of this Report. In addition, while mobile-to-go ordering and pick-up is touched on in this Report and included in the definition of “carry out” (See Below), it is not a focus of this Report.

This Report mentions companies that offer delivery of items other than restaurant food (eg Postmates, Uber, Amazon); however, this Report only focuses on the restaurant portion of delivery companies.

This Report builds off of The Online Foodservice Consumer – US, August 2016.

The following terms are used throughout the Report:

  • Carry out: Refers to orders placed online, through an app or over the phone and picked up directly by the customer at the restaurant. This includes not only takeout and curbside to-go orders, but also mobile order pick-up.

  • Third party delivery company: Refers to any company that delivers meals from a restaurant to the consumer or enables carry out through online or mobile app ordering. These companies typically partner with restaurants and provide a platform (eg website, app) from which consumers can order food. Once the consumer orders food online, it is delivered by a contracted courier or can be picked up by the customer. Examples of these companies include: Grubhub, Uber Eats, Postmates, Caviar, DoorDash, Ritual etc.

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