Food & Grocery

A Guide on Food Delivery App Development

  • Published on : November 16, 2023

  • Read Time : 13 min

  • Views : 5.7k


With so many on-demand apps popping up all the time, it’s no surprise why fast food and healthy meals have gone online. Instead of spending time in the kitchen, a customer chooses to order food online.

Since these food ordering apps are largely focused on customer’s convenience & experience, users can easily search for the food they prefer to order, avail of special deals & get the food delivered from local restaurants.

As per the latest reports, the food delivery industry is expected to grow worth $151.5 billion by 2023 & it’s all because of the COVID-19 pandemic that made people order food online rather than go for dinner at some restaurant. It is for this reason that platforms like Uber Eats, DoorDash, Zomato, etc., have experienced significant growth in recent years.

It is largely expected that the online food ordering trend will continue to gain popularity & the food delivery market can witness a whopping revenue of US$1 trillion in 2023 and US$2 trillion by 2027. Which clearly shows a CAGR of 12.78% during this period.


This data clearly shows why on-demand food delivery app development plays a crucial role in the global food market.

From a wide range of cuisine options to hassle-free home delivery, these apps can be valuable partners for food business owners. Keep reading as we explore the details of an on-demand food delivery app, its types, features, development, revenue models & cost of its development.

Types of On-Demand Food Delivery Apps

In the era of online food ordering apps, there are two primary models categorized based on the restaurants they cater to:

1. Restaurant-to-Consumer Delivery


This on-demand food delivery app development model is adopted by restaurants that offer a digital extension of their physical establishments. Its purpose is to facilitate direct food delivery from a specific restaurant to consumers through a dedicated application.

An exemplary illustration of this model is Domino’s Pizza. While Domino’s is available on various third-party platforms like UberEATS, it also operates its own food delivery app. Customers can place orders directly through the Domino’s app and receive their food directly from the restaurant without intermediaries.

2. Platform-to-Consumer Delivery


The aggregator model has made significant strides in the food delivery industry, capitalizing on convenience for consumers. Platform-to-consumer delivery apps bring together multiple local restaurants onto a single platform. Here, restaurants can showcase their menus, discounts, and offers. Users have the convenience of exploring various restaurant options, placing orders, and enjoying swift deliveries.

UberEATS, DoorDash, and Grubhub are prime examples of successful platform-to-consumer food delivery services. These platforms boast millions of users who appreciate the variety of choices they provide. The aggregator model’s appeal lies in the plethora of options it offers, making it a favorite among consumers.

As the on-demand food delivery app development domain thrives and evolves, it embraces a vast selection of different models. This strategic evolution aims to meet a wide range of consumer needs enhancing the overall experience.

Essential Features of a Food Delivery Service App

In order to ensure a hassle-free user experience, some essential elements must be incorporated while building an on-demand food delivery service. Here are some of the salient characteristics:


1. User Registration and Profile Management: The app should allow users to change their profile information and provide access to account creation, details, payment options, and shipment addresses.

2. Restaurant Listings and Menu Display: In addition to the menus and prices of partnered restaurants, the app should have a comprehensive list of food options.

3. Ordering and Customization: The app should allow users to browse menus, choose dishes, personalize orders (for example, changing ingredients), and place orders. For a smooth ordering process, a user-friendly interface with clear instructions and intuitive navigation is crucial.

4. Real-Time Order Tracking: The app needs to give users up-to-the-second information on the order’s status, including confirmation, preparation, and delivery. Users should be able to monitor the delivery’s status, learn when it will arrive, and, if necessary, get in touch with the delivery driver.

5. Delivery Address Management: Users should have the option to save multiple delivery addresses, such as home, office, or other frequently visited locations. For each order with this feature, users can choose the appropriate delivery address.

6. Payment Integration: Various payment methods should be supported, including cash on delivery, credit/debit cards and mobile wallets.

7. Ratings and Reviews: Based on their experience, users should be able to rate and review restaurants and dishes. This feature helps users make informed decisions and encourages restaurants to maintain high-quality services.

8. Customer Support: The app should have a dedicated customer support system, such as a chat feature or a helpline, to address user queries, assist, and handle complaints effectively.

9. Promotions and Discounts: The app should offer promotional deals, discounts, and loyalty programs to attract and reward users. These features encourage customer engagement and repeat orders.

10. Push Notifications: Users should receive timely notifications about order confirmation, estimated delivery time, special promotions, and new menu items. Push notifications help keep users informed and engaged with the app.

These are some essential features, but additional functionalities like scheduling orders in advance, referral programs, and social sharing options can further enhance the user experience. It’s important to continually update and improve the app based on user feedback and market trends to stay competitive in the food delivery industry.

Food Delivery App Development- Step-By-Step Process

Developing a food delivery app involves several steps. Let’s understand the key stages of on-demand food delivery app development step-by-step:

1. Market Research: To identify your target audience, competitors, and market trends it is important to conduct market research. This will help you define your app’s unique value proposition and understand user needs and expectations.

2. Define the App Requirements: Based on your market research, create a list of features and functionalities your app should have. Prioritize them based on their importance and feasibility within your budget and timeline constraints.

3. Wireframing and Design: Create wireframes or rough sketches of the app’s layout, user interface, and navigation flow. Once you have finalized the wireframes, proceed to design the app’s user interface (UI) and user experience (UX), keeping in mind the target audience and brand identity.

4. Backend Development: Create your app’s backend infrastructure. This entails establishing the appropriate servers, databases, APIs, and third-party services, such as payment gateways or GPS tracking programs. Make sure that the backend is scalable, secure, and able to support numerous concurrent users.

5. Frontend Development: Create the app’s user interfaces, incorporate the needed features and functionalities, and make sure that user interactions are seamless. For example, depending on the platforms you’re targeting (iOS, Android, or both), you might code the app in React Native, Swift, or Kotlin.

6. Integration of APIs: Integrate APIs from third-party services like restaurant databases, payment gateways, mapping services for location tracking, and others. This integration allows seamless communication between your app and these external services.

7. Testing and Quality Assurance: You must do testing to ensure that the software functions flawlessly. Functional testing verifies that everything functions as intended; usability testing determines usability; and performance testing ensures that everything functions correctly across a variety of platforms and usage scenarios.

8. Deployment: Prepare the app for deployment by packaging it for respective app stores (Apple App Store and Google Play Store). Follow the specific guidelines for each platform and submit the app for review.

9. Launch and Marketing: After your app is approved and published to the app stores, you can begin advertising and promoting it to your intended audience. Get inventive with it; consider launching some social media campaigns, giving your app a small boost in the app stores, or collaborating with some influencers. The objective of this is to get more people to download your app and get highly engaged with it.

10. Continuous Improvement: Keep an eye on user comments, app analytics, and user reviews to understand user behavior and spot problem areas. Update the program frequently to correct bugs, add new features, and improve overall user experience.

Remember that developing an on-demand food delivery software is a continuous process. It’s a process that requires ongoing adjustment. It’s critical to pay attention to customer comments and modify your software accordingly. By doing this, you can make sure the app keeps up with what people want and what’s trending in the market.

Revenue Models of On-Demand Food Delivery Apps


Commission from Restaurants

These apps charge a percentage of the total order value as a commission fee from partner restaurants for using their platform to receive orders and reach a wider customer base.

Delivery Charges

Customers are charged a fee for the delivery service provided by the app, especially for smaller orders or during peak hours, contributing to the app’s revenue.

Subscription Plans

By offering premium subscription plans, apps can generate recurring revenue from subscribers who receive benefits such as free deliveries, exclusive discounts, and priority service.

Advertising and Promotions

Restaurants pay to feature their listings prominently within the app, run advertisements, or offer special promotions, creating an additional revenue stream.

Peak Pricing

During high-demand periods or busy hours, apps implement peak pricing, charging customers extra for timely deliveries to increase revenue.

Each of these revenue models allows on-demand food delivery apps to sustain their operations while delivering convenient and efficient services to both customers and partner restaurants.

Cost to Develop an On-demand Food Delivery App

When it comes to creating a food delivery app, there are a few things that can affect how much it will cost. Think of it like building a house – the final price depends on a lot of factors.

First, how fancy do you want your app to be? Do you want it to work on iPhones, Android phones, and websites? The more devices it works on, the more it can cost.

Next, what features do you want? If you just want people to order food, it won’t be too expensive. But if you want things like tracking your order in real time, letting people leave reviews, running special deals, and having customer support, it can get pricier.

Where you find the people to make your app matters too. Some places have more expensive developers than others.

Lastly, how fast do you want it done? Rush jobs can be more expensive.

So, just to give you a rough idea, a basic food delivery app can cost anywhere from $25,000 to $50,000. This covers the basics like signing up, seeing the menu, ordering food, and paying for it.

If you want all the bells and whistles, though, like tracking orders and fancy extras, it can go from $50,000 to $100,000 or even more, depending on how special you want it to be.

But remember, these are just rough estimates. The actual cost can be very different. To know exactly how much it would cost for your specific app, it’s a good idea to talk to a company that makes food delivery apps or you opt for a ready-made food delivery app like Grofee from Codiant. They can give you a detailed estimate based on what you want.


In conclusion, the world of creating food delivery apps presents an exciting mix of opportunities and challenges. As this sector keeps growing, the price tag for developing these apps can differ, depending on how intricate they are. To hit the jackpot, businesses need a winning combination of creativity, user-friendly design, and smart marketing approaches.

Explore the power of Codiant’s food delivery app solutions and boost the potential of your start-up with our team of tech wizards.

Stay tuned for our upcoming blogs, where we’ll explore the fascinating realm of food delivery app development.

Take your business to the next level with our game-changing food delivery app development services.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Creating a food delivery app involves several steps:

  1. Define your target audience and concept of app
  2. Do market research to gauge  customer needs and competitor are doing.
  3. Identify a suitable development need (native, hybrid, or cross-platform).
  4. Project user-friendly interfaces for customers, restaurants, and delivery drivers.
  5. Develop the app’s backend infrastructure like databases and servers.
  6. Integrate payment gateways, and other essential features and GPS tracking.
  7. Test the app systematically to ensure functionality and usability.
  8. Launch the app on app stores and promote it to attract users.

Yes, food delivery apps can be money-making and profitable. They typically make good revenue through numerous sources, including delivery fees, advertising, commissions from partner restaurants, in-app purchases and subscription models.

However, effectiveness depends on factors such as, competition, operational efficiency, market demand and monetization strategies.

Creating a delivery application, in India can have a fluctuating cost depending on elements like the features included the level of complexity the platform for development and the rates of developers.

For an app with functions the price could fall between $10,000 to $30,000. On the hand for sophisticated apps with tailored features and integrations the cost may go, up to $50,000 to $100,000 or even higher.

AI (Artificial Intelligence) is used in food delivery apps to optimize different aspects of the user experience and operational efficiency. AI-powered algorithms are used for tasks such as route optimization , personalized recommendations, order prediction, customer support automation, and detection of fraud. These AI-driven capabilities help in improve accuracy, streamline processes, , and deliver a better overall service.

Creating a free delivery app can be created by following basic steps to like other delivery app, as mentioned earlier. However, if you intend to offer free delivery to customers, you need to be aware for the associated costs in your business model.

To offset these costs, you can explore alternative revenue methods, such as charging higher menu prices, deploying a minimum order value requirement, or partnering with restaurants to share delivery expenses.

Developing a free food app includes designing and developing an app that adds value to users without charging them directly for access. You can leverage the app through alternative revenue sources, such as sponsorships, advertising, partnerships with food brands or restaurants, premium features or content, affiliate marketing or in-app purchases.  By offering a free app with compelling features and content, you can incant a large user base and make revenue through various channels.

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