takeaway promotion ideas
by Laura-Andreea Voicu

Selling food online can feel overwhelming for restaurateurs who have always relied on their in-restaurant sales. However, once you set up online ordering for your restaurant, you’ll see that promoting it isn’t that hard. The takeaway promotion ideas below will teach you how to spread the news about your food delivery service and motivate people to place their first order ASAP.

The Best Way to Promote Restaurant Takeout & Delivery: 13 Takeaway Promotion Ideas

1. Quarantine/Lockdown-themed promos

We’re all taking lockdown measures hard – for now, they’re a reality we can’t avoid. So instead of trying to run from it, you should embrace it and make it an integral part of your online restaurant deals.

Come up with tailored names like The Lockdown Lunch Special or #StayHome Sunday Brunch. This will help your restaurant stand out. Include hand-written notes in every delivery bag thanking the customer for supporting your business in such difficult times. A personalized thank-you note can go a long way.

2. Family-friendly meal kits

There’s only so much takeout you can eat before it starts getting repetitive. You can put a spin on that by selling meal kits. You package the ingredients, write down the instructions, and customers have to put it together.

This is an excellent option for families because meal kits are more affordable than regular takeout. Plus, it’s a brand-new activity they can do as a family: put together a delicious, restaurant-quality meal without leaving their house.

3. To-go cocktails

If you can pretty much order anything you want at home when it comes to food, people are starting to miss going out for a drink more and more. As a response to that, some countries have begun allowing alcohol delivery.

If your local regulations allow it, start selling to-go cocktails and other alcoholic beverages. They will instantly boost your online sales, and you have another chance to be creative. Brainstorm beverage takeaway promotion ideas like DIY Bloody Mary Kit, Mason Jar Long Island Mix, or your most popular cocktails in a bottle.

4. Food and drink subscriptions

This is still a new thing for restaurants, but it can be just the thing to pull you out of anonymity if you do it before it becomes popular. Takeaway ideas like these are bound to explode in the future. Give it a shot: offer a subscription that customers can sign up for to get their meals delivered daily at a time of their choice.

You can do the same with drinks or even pair them up. Every time a customer subscribes, recommend they also add the beverage subscription at a discount. Then, send them a drink each day that pairs well with their food order.

5. Hashtag-based promos for social media

The best food promotion ideas for social media often include a hashtag, especially on Instagram and Twitter. There are hashtags exclusive to a brand, but there are also hashtags that circulate nationwide like #TakeoutTuesday or #TheGreatAmericanTakeout. Jump on the bandwagon and use these in your posts to get more engagement and orders.

When you post on social media using these hashtags, tag your city or region so people around your restaurant can see the post.

6. Frozen/refrigerated heat-and-eat meals

Restaurant takeout menus don’t have to be the same as in-restaurant menus. If you want to add more dishes to your takeout ideas, consider heat-and-eat meals that you can freeze or refrigerate for mass distribution. Unlike more pretentious dishes, they will travel well, which is why they’re great for restaurant takeaway.

7. SMS-exclusive offers

SMS marketing is one of those restaurant promotions that work regardless of time and place. It’s a simple way to keep in touch with your customers and inform them of discounts and special offers. Implementing it won’t break your budget, and it’s guaranteed to boost your online orders.

You can create offers exclusive to SMS marketing to motivate customers to leave their phone numbers and agree to receive restaurant promotion messages from you.

8. Discounts available only to app users

Having a branded mobile app can set your restaurant apart from the competition. The app will carry your imprint, from logo to colors. In addition, customers prefer apps over ordering on a website because the process is more intuitive and convenient.

One way to motivate them to install your app is to offer regular food promotions only available in-app. Once they install it and order once, they’ll keep an eye out for more promos in the future.

White-label Restaurant Mobile App Get your own branded app for food ordering within minutes.

9. Higher discounts on low-traffic days

Offering food delivery promotions and takeout deals is excellent. Still, you can’t be doing too much of that either, lest you wake up losing money instead of increasing your revenue. A good way to balance that is to offer your highest discounts on days that are particularly quiet to attract more customers.

10. Online contests and giveaways

Some of the best promotional ideas for restaurants are contests and giveaways. They reward customers while increasing your engagement and, ultimately, food orders. The simplest way to go about this is to include a couple of must-dos to qualify for the giveaway/contest that will give your social media presence a boost.

For example, you can ask for a follow on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, a like to the post, or a comment tagging some friends so that the post reaches more people. The prizes can be unique food delivery offers, gift cards, or an online food order discount.

11. Ads that target locals

Most takeaway promotion ideas are either free or with minimal costs. However, you can also put some money into ads that target the local community.

For instance, you can run a Facebook ad that includes a call to action redirecting customers to the online ordering page on your website. That way, you boost traffic to your website and bring users one click away from placing a food order.

Read more: 10 Facebook Ad Targeting Tips to Boost Restaurant Conversions

12. Exclusive “club” for newsletter subscribers

In terms of food marketing ideas, email marketing is a winning strategy that works without fail if you know how to implement it properly. Create the feeling of an exclusive club for people who sign up for your newsletter and send regular creative restaurant specials, offers, discounts, and exclusive updates to members.

If you have enough information about your customers, surprise them with an email on their birthday saying the champagne is on you or offering a hefty discount. Take advantage of every piece of information you have to show them you appreciate their patronage.

Read more: 12 Restaurant Newsletter Ideas That Will Convert & Engage

13. Themed evenings

Promoting restaurants is much easier now than ever. Social media is a great tool to promote events and special themed evenings without paying a dime. Now that most events are held online, brainstorm some ideas for takeout and delivery specials with a theme.

It will be just like you’re organizing a themed evening at your restaurant. Some great takeout ideas are Couples’ Night In, Family Movie Night, or Singles’ Sunday Funday. Create themed offers for each, like two for one pizza, 4-person meal bundles, and a free drink with any order.

Conclusion

If your goal is to increase takeout and delivery sales, we hope these takeaway promotion ideas have given you the inspiration you needed. The good news about ordering food online is that promotion also happens online, so it’s virtually free. With a little bit of creativity, you can capture customers’ attention and secure their loyalty.

photo of GloriaFood blog writer Laura-Andreea Voicu
Laura-Andreea Voicu

Laura-Andreea Voicu is an experienced content writer with a knack for marketing and SEO. She delivers business-optimized content to help restaurants boost sales and grow their brand.

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