Ordering Blog

What is a direct-to-consumer platform?

What is a Direct to customer platform

With many intermediaries dominating the market of on-demand deliveries, you are probably wondering what are the pros of having a direct-to-consumer platform? 

D2C (Direct to Consumer) model is a vertical business model, which aims to eliminate intermediaries and make the company independent, throughout the process of selling a product or service. 

At this point, the D2C food and beverage market stood at $5.5 billion in 2020 and is projected to increase at a CAGR of around 40% to touch $15 billion by 2025.


Why is there a growing interest in D2C?

Greater Insight on customers 

Having a D2C platform provides more direct insight into customers’ lives. Oftentimes, loyal customers who visit a store or a restaurant in real-life, are more likely to purchase from a direct platform rather than a third-party provider, since they have an established emotional connection with the brand. 

Customers are looking for authenticity and transparency of the process, that’s why D2C works when building trust and increasing customer retention. As a newly established business, having a direct platform, such as a small restaurant chain or an on-demand beauty service, provides more room to tell the story of the brand.

For example, introduce team members, implement a WhatsApp chat, show a compelling story through quality videos. All these visual aspects are very limited and structured on third-party platforms. 


Building a more profound customer experience

Having a D2C platform gives limitless opportunities for business owners to make the app or website fully their own. From colors, design, playing with text and fonts, to personalized call-to-action buttons. A platform with customized features evokes specific emotions in viewers that go hand in hand with the brand’s strategy.  

As a newly established business, having a direct platform, such as an app for a small restaurant chain or an on-demand laundry service, provides more room for storytelling.

For example, introducing team members, implementing a live chat for direct questions, showing a compelling story of the production process through quality videos. All the visual aspects are very limited and structured on third-party platforms, which results in taking away from the complete customer experience.  


Optimized features

Third-party providers offer a limit when it comes to the level of customization and features available for end customers. Although the benefits of intermediary applications and websites include consistency and quality of their features, not all of them invest in using their full technological potential. 

Having your own on-demand delivery app, backed up by the right software, can exceed customers’ expectations, in comparison to their intermediary user experience. 

Since customers are particularly concerned with the speed and convenience of their purchasing process, important features to consider include, real-time tracking of deliveries, convenient payment methods, push notifications, and speedy checkout. 

Additionally, considering the non-technical aspects is equally significant. This includes follow-up emails, messages and notifications, immediate customer service, personalized offers based on previous orders, and the feeling of connection to the brand and team members.  

Ownership of customer data

Big third-party applications, such as Uber Eats or Deliveroo, have full ownership of direct customers’ data and profit by selling it to their partner restaurants. For example, as a restaurateur, you need to take into account additional costs, if you are interested in having full access to the data analysis provided by the third party.  Having your own system in place, provides visibility and access to your customer’s data first hand, without restrictions. 



One of the main reasons why brands move towards D2C is the amounts saved on commissions, that they would have normally paid to third-party providers. The biggest players, like Uber Eats or Deliveroo, often seem like an obvious solution to entrepreneurs who are just starting out. However, although it does provide more stable exposure, the commissions frequently take as much as 30% of revenue, leaving business owners with very little net income. 

Similar to owning property, having your own well-featured app, might take a little more effort, however, provides many benefits in the long run, in comparison to paying ‘rent’ to third parties. 


To conclude…

D2C has a promising future and carries many benefits for small business owners, as well as large franchises, to venture out on their own and reestablish their brand online, through an independent on-demand delivery app or website. The benefits include: 

● Getting to know your customers 

● Ownership of customer data 

● Building a more profound customer experience 

● Saving costs 

The set-up of your own platform does not have to be extremely time-consuming and difficult. There are systems on the market, such as Ordering, which provide all the technology you need to get started in less than a week, and do not require coding or design skills, in case you are not an expert in that area.