Retail

GPS Order Tracking Helps Fuel New Retail Innovation

Domino's Pizza app

The world of quick service restaurants (QSRs) is where it’s at when it comes to so much retail innovation these days. And a pizza chain, Domino’s, provides some of the latest evidence of that, via a new GPS tracking program.

The QSR chain launched the program after testing it for much of 2019, according to an announcement. “Domino’s stores across the U.S. are now adding this new technology and by the end of 2019 roughly a quarter of locations nationwide will have it in place,” the company said. “A significant portion of the remaining stores are expected to have the GPS delivery tracking technology available in 2020.”

Here’s how the program works, according to Domino’s. “Customers who order from stores that have GPS delivery tracking capabilities will be able to see the location of their order and delivery expert on an interactive map found on their order confirmation page. After customers order, they will receive an estimated delivery time and can opt into text notifications that let them know when their order is on its way, when it’s about two minutes away and when it has arrived.”

Other Moves

That’s hardly it when it comes to recent innovation in this space.

Uber has introduced a group ordering option, the company said in a blog post.

“Whether you’re at the office, going to a friend’s place or hosting at home, coordinating group meals can be challenging — especially when you and your guests are hungry and the clock is ticking,” the company said. “Starting today, you can skip over that hassle and take back team lunches. Feel like a hero when you host thanks to group ordering on ubereats.com.”

To use the feature, users select a restaurant and click the “Start Group Order” button available on the restaurant’s menu. Users can then share a group order link, which makes it easier for multiple people to participate in the ordering process. Checkout is the same as always, and everyone can track the order.

In other Uber Eats news, the company recently launched a pickup feature nationwide. The feature was tested in San Diego, Phoenix, Dallas and Austin, and was made available across the country on Oct. 18. The company’s rivals — DoorDash, Grubhub and Postmates — already offer a pickup service to their customers.

Loyalty Innovation

It’s not just delivery that is driving new QSR innovation, either.

Sandwich chain Jimmy John’s announced Monday (Dec. 9) the launch of its first customer loyalty program.

Freaky Fast Rewards, now available nationwide, was tested earlier this year and rolled out on a limited basis, resulting in more than 1.8 million members who have already signed up. For those just joining the program, Jimmy John’s is offering a free 8-inch sandwich after their first order. All members can earn various rewards, including sandwiches, sides, drinks and exclusive first-taste access to new products.

Freaky Fast Rewards features one-tap technology that allows members to make purchases via Apple Pay or Google Pay. In addition, the program is fully integrated into Jimmy John’s website and mobile app, where members can track their progress toward their next reward.

Since the pilot launch in March, Freaky Fast Rewards has led to 1,724,623 total rewards redeemed; 50,000 free Little John sandwiches to support October’s national product launch; 268,893 birthdays celebrated with a free sandwich; 24,881 sandwiches given away on Nov. 3, National Sandwich Day; 18,512 pickles given away on Nov. 14, National Pickle Day; and 100,925 free sides earned on this past Cyber Monday (Dec. 2).

Expect more moves in delivery and loyaly in the coming months.

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