Inspiration

One of our group member's parents run a series of restaurants. Before COVID, their stores would pull in a decent salary in weekly revenue. Now, customers are afraid to come in and physical orders plummeted. His parents set up mobile delivery with UberEats, but the high commission and fees stole up to 35% of their delivery business. With these numbers that skyrockets to 200 thousand dollars a year, and each store is now barely floating by.

Then there is the issue of independent food deliverers like LoveLocal, Total TakeOut, and FromTo, who’ve been taking phone orders for years. They charge their own fee which is great since they don't charge the store, no tips or fees, and still make a desired profit. When performing research this weekend, we reached out to 22 restaurants who said that before COVID, 55% of them had their own worked with independent couriers, and 90% of those who identified as small businesses used to be their own courier. Despite this, when we called one of our participants on Friday night, I was shocked to hear she now only made about 25% of her original business.

Mobile delivery continues to plague customers with inflated pricing. It suffers from a lack of customization, communication, and drivers working for enterprises are too demotivated to represent a restaurant brand reliably. These are all important to small businesses! The monopolistic food delivery empire is on the verge of collapse.

What it does

With Snap, restaurants can choose the delivery method they prefer whether that be couriers, self-delivery, pickup only, or free trackless delivery. No barrier to entry! Best of all? They could add however many couriers their store needs to be able to meet demands - whether they hire individuals like your local "one-man army" driver or larger courier companies like the Government of Ontario-backed OpenLocal. Stores can get in direct contact with couriers and search for couriers that fit their brand image. On the flip-side, couriers can also network with or reach out to stores. Billie can finally show off her networking skills in a new era! She can even track her earnings and salary! Snap will even allow stores to be able to take responsibility for their own page. Styling, customizing and editing it as they so choose. They’d have the ability to track the progress of their orders as before, and have all of this is in the background while customers enjoy the delivery ecosystem they’ve come to love without inflated pricing or commission fees!

How we built it

Over the weekend, our team was busy programming the customer application and in the future we hope to finish up the business applications for which we’ve completed the shown UI/UX models. For our wireframe prototype, we created a design using Figma wireframing and design elements, going through extensive UI/UX. Following this we used MongoDB to prototype our database and create our schema- we connected this to our application and hosted all our test data through Mongo as of yet. The front-end of the customer application was created using Flutter and Dart.

Challenges we ran into

  • Brand image and promotions are important for small businesses! With Snap we will have to provide full menu customization and inbuilt Snap promotions!
  • The delivery market is oversaturated! How will Snap undercut this? We decided that we would be a platform that is accessible anywhere. Through a mobile app, but also on the web or from QR codes and links on the store’s social channels. More importantly though, the courier flexibility and working with/for courier rights is why stores and customers will choose us. We thought that couriers have a right to a healthy working environment!
  • And most importantly, we had to squeeze through all these different aspects (UI/UX, Front-end, Back-end, Research, Business planning) in under 3 days!!

Accomplishments that we're proud of

To start, we're proud that before jumping into our idea and working with an idea, we slowed down and did some research. Friday night, we reached out manually to every restaurant employee or worker that was in our network or among our team's pooled connections to fill in an online survey for us. We then used this feedback to finetune a UI/UX design for ourselves together, which we brainstormed on for an entire day, finalizing a large sample set of over 30+ designed views in Figma! We then diligently worked with Mongo and Flutter to create an MVP of our Customer facing application with working test data on our last day! After all this, we saw our project as a potential business we might hope to pursue and worked on business aspects of it! We see our project expanding into a potential business and have a detailed market strategy! Snap charges no commission or fees. Instead, we run a freemium model with an optional subscription platform. We will charge $30/month for Tracked Internal, allowing stores to deliver their own food, and $50 for Tracked Premium which gives access to the courier marketplace. We then expanded on this by creating our own business plan for other key demographics (customers and couriers) as well as a hypothetical marketing plan!

What we learned

Some of the improvements that we can do on the app include adding an analytics tab under settings for the business app, to enable stores to see information about their last promotion and adding in alerts or inbox page so that promotions, notifications, etc. are available/viewable in-app, and are also available on the web app version. Our current focus is to complete our MVP, with minimized versions of our customer and business apps. Brand image and promotions are important for small businesses. With Snap we will provide full menu customization and inbuilt Snap promotions which are charged from the lowest of a dollar to far higher.

What's next for Snap Delivery

With your support, over the next year we hope to continue working on this project and:

  • Enroll a hundred stores
  • Partner with five courier companies.
  • Finish up the development progress of all aspects of our application while adding in new enhancements and features to improve the usability of the application.
  • And most importantly, save thousands of dollars for all our users!

Help us save food and small businesses by giving them the tool they need to keep their deliveries- their food- in their own hands!

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