Each winter, and during the holidays, people in China order more food for delivery. It’s not a surprise. When it’s cold and bleak outside and the snow is falling, who would want to spend time going outside and searching for a place to eat or a food takeaway service?
This need for reliable and efficient food delivery services has created a lot of competition in China. In August last year, one of the biggest Chinese food delivery services Ele.me acquired one of their rivals Baidu Waimai. Now Ele.me plus another rival service, Meituan, combined dominate over 80% of the food delivery market in China.
The services have grown in popularity quickly because they focus on delivering a great customer experience. Everything about the way that the delivery companies design their service is focused on being able to deliver great food to the customer in the shortest possible time.
For instance, when Ele.me started out they helped restaurant owners to install computers. They connected the computers to their ordering system and created systems that managers could use inside the restaurant for handling orders and deliveries. Ele.me hires their own delivery riders and coordinates them depending on which locations require delivery riders – they control the entire process from order to delivery, except for actually cooking the food.
Once an order is placed, a target delivery time is set and the customer will receive compensation if the food is late. Ele.me has an average time from a call to the food being delivered of 31 minutes and they are constantly trying to improve this.
Meituan Waimai is backed by Tencent and they also offer supermarket food delivery services in addition to cooked restaurant food. With their enormous combined market share everyone in China sees 2018 as a battle between Meituan Waimai and Ele.me for the Chinese food delivery market.
I expect that the real differentiator is going to be the customer experience. How good is the ordering procedure? How quickly does the delivery take place? How good is the food? If one of these two major brands can create a significantly better customer experience then they will be able to pull ahead and earn a great market share.
Teleperformance has significant global expertise in working with similar fast-moving and innovative app-based companies. If you are interested in how companies like this can improve their CX quickly then please get in touch with me directly.