Online Ordering Boom Gives Rise To Virtual Restaurants
Frato’s pizza seems like a usual family restaurant, with its black and white checked floor and red chairs. But in the kitchen a strange news came out that the cooks are making dishes for four other restaurants at the same time.
There is, obviously the gourmet pizza whose customers have come to expect from Frato’s when they walk through the door. Furthermore there are spicy chicken gyros for Halal Kitchen, barbecue chicken tenders for Tenderlicious, salmon grilled cheese for Cheesy Deliciousness, and Butterfinger milkshakes for Heavenly Shakes all of them can only be ordered through online websites Grubhub, DoorDash, and UberEats.
Proprietor Michael Kudrna launched the four spinoffs earlier this year within few weeks as he races to keep his Chicago- area business ahead of an increasing trend: restaurants are considered only for delivery or take-out.
Thousands of restaurants are trying out these trending extras inside their own kitchens. While others are opening “Ghost kitchens, where all food is ready to go.
Both ideas have occurred to capitalize on the rising popularity of ordering in instead of dining out.
The $26.8 billion online ordering market is the fastest-growing source of restaurant sales in the United States, according to David Portalatin, a food industry adviser for the NPD group.
Kudrna says the virtual restaurants are a way to gain enough incremental revenue to offset the fees he pays to the third-party apps, which now drive one-third of his sales. Restaurants pay commission fees as high as 30 percent per order.
"The beauty is I can create concepts and if they don't work, I can move on to try another one," Kudrna said. "I will have lost weeks of work, but not large sums of money."