third party delivery service

How to Survive (and Thrive) in the Third-Party Delivery World

Let’s face it: third-party delivery (3PD) has invaded the restaurant space, and it’s here to stay. If you want to be competitive and aren’t already part of the 3PD universe, what’s holding you back? If you ask us, it’s time to take the plunge.

The proof is in the pudding

According to an Earnest research 2018 report, third-party delivery has been growing 40% YoY since 2014. According to a February 2019 report, Grubhub reported $5.1 billion in food sales in 2018, a 34 percent increase from the prior year, and said it has grown to 17.7 million diners. Uber Eats said it expects to deliver $10 billion worth of food in 36 countries this year, up from $6 billion in 2018.

While third-party delivery isn’t a perfect solution, it’s definitely worth buying into, and probably necessary for your restaurants.

Here’s how to make the most out of it:
Show us the good stuff
  • Highlight items on your menu that are easy to produce, travel well and profitable. If you’re going to play the 3PD game, make sure you’re setting your stores up for success.
More data = better decisions
  • Maybe that one entree is a superstar when patrons are dining in the restaurant, but it’s an underperformer when carried out. But, that’s one of our more profitable menu items! you cry. TOO BAD! we say. Bottom line, if you’re seeing less interest in a particular item on the 3PD front than you do in-store, either make moves to make it stand out on the apps, or capitalize on something that’s more popular and comparably profitable.
  • The more data streams from which you’re able to extract information, the better. Use the data funneling from third-party delivery apps to make smarter decisions about your staff needs and hours, menu optimization and optimal price points.
Play the field
  • Our clients’ experiences have shown that if you only sign up under one delivery service, there’s no true difference in your profitability. The positive swing of third-party delivery happens when your restaurant is accessible across multiple 3PD players. Remember: these companies are out to gain their own customers. When it comes to delivery services, your potential patrons will have several options in front of them, so making yourself as available as possible is in your best interest.
Lean into the data
  • While the apps may add another step to your sales entry, being able to identify the exact percentage of your sales that can be attributed to third-party delivery is definitely an advantage.
Wrapping it all up

Adapting to third-party delivery trends benefits you in the long run, despite the cons presented. You can either adapt to the trends, or you can sit back while your competitors join the movement. What’s your move?


Decision Logic is restaurant management software built to reduce your food and labor costs. Through our consultative approach and operator-centric software, we help restaurateurs save money and time so they can focus on what matters most: their customers. Interested in learning more? Get in touch to schedule your no-obligation demo!

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