2024 Global Digital Shopping index

Consumers Tap AI for Food Delivery Recommendations

Aggregators Compete for Suburban Markets

As artificial intelligence (AI) becomes a larger part of consumers’ day-to-day lives, many are leveraging the technology to figure out what food they are in the mood for.

By the Numbers

The latest installment of PYMNTS’ “Consumer Inflation Sentiment Report,” titled “Consumers Know What AI Is — Not How It’s Integrated Into Their Daily Lives,” drew from a survey of more than 2,300 U.S. consumers in August. According to the study, the average respondent engages with five AI-related experiences every week.

When it comes to food, most consumers are already leveraging the technology to get smarter tips and inspiration. The study found that 58% of participants had received AI-powered recommendations from a food delivery service.

Digital consumers

The Data in Action

Noting the opportunity to seize on consumers’ desire for smart recommendations, food delivery companies are stepping up their AI capabilities.

For instance, Uber Technologies is testing an AI chatbot for its food delivery service, Uber Eats, which will assist users in finding relevant restaurant dishes and more in an effort to personalize customer recommendations and streamline the ordering experience.

The chatbot is expected to prompt customers to input their budget and food preferences, and then to offer suggestions accordingly.

Additionally, DoorDash is similarly testing an AI-based chatbot in select markets to enhance ordering and help customers find the right food options.

It is not only restaurant delivery platforms. Grocery aggregator Instacart announced in May that it was combining its own AI and data with OpenAI’s ChatGPT technology to roll out Ask Instacart, a search feature designed to provide suggestions and answers to questions.

The tool is intended to offer consumers recommendations on food pairings, suggested ingredient swaps, advice about cooking techniques, ingredient lists, different kinds of meals, information about which foods work with different dietary restrictions and more.