For more than two months the COVID-19 crisis completely upended the business models of numerous Louisville-area restaurants, impelling many operators to develop compensatory curbside carryout and delivery programs, virtually overnight.
Often they found a steep learning curve ahead of them, with the options in support of these programs truly bewildering. What’s more, since the limited reopening of eateries for dine-in service in late May, early returns suggest that a large portion of the dining public as yet prefers to exercise these carryout and delivery options rather than return immediately to on-site dining.
In an effort to help operators adjust to these difficult and ever-shifting realities, Food & Dining Magazine has stepped up in partnership with web design firm of Mr and Mrs Smith to develop a free online custom ordering platform to assist restaurateurs who want to connect directly to their customers.
Here is the news release that went out this morning.
June 1, 2020
Food & Dining Magazine and Louisville Web Design Firm Offer Free Online Ordering System to Help Restaurants
Food & Dining Magazine (foodanddine.com) and Louisville web design firm Mr and Mrs Smith LLC, (mrwebsmith.com) are pleased to announce that they have partnered to create a free custom online restaurant ordering system to assist Louisville’s locally-owned restaurants coping with the coronavirus crisis.
The goal of this free service is plain and simple — to help Louisville restaurants reach and serve their customers in this new and ever-evolving environment.
This a free custom ordering system is designed specifically for the restaurant. It will reside on the restaurant’s own website. The entire process is completely free — no set-up fees, no monthly fees, no service fees, or delivery fees.
As the COVID-19 crisis forced Louisville restaurants to abruptly shift business models toward carryout and delivery both Jason Smith (founder of Mr and Mrs Smith, and designer of F&D’s website) and John Carlos White (publisher of F&D) grew concerned that many independent restaurants lacked the technical resources and the funds to create an online ordering system tailored to meet this new demand. In response, Smith set out to create a simple to use carry-out and delivery ordering system that can reside on the restaurant’s own website and easily accessed by customers on either a desktop or a mobile device.
The result is an intuitive ordering virtual menu system. Customers simply choose their items, add them to a cart, and check out. The free system allows restaurants to offer up to 18 menu items and connect the restaurant’s own online merchant for free (for full details see www.mrwebsmith.com/restaurant).
Restaurants can also opt to install additional features, for a fee, beyond the basic service, including offering more than 18 menu items, scheduled orders, delivery area restrictions, text message confirmation systems, daily and time slot limitations.
With the implementation of this free service, Food & Dining Magazine and Mr and Mrs Smith LLC are giving local independent restaurants access to high-quality design and technical support that has previously only been open to larger restaurants and chains.
“I believe delivery and carryout will continue to be a significant portion of a restaurants business well after this crisis has passed,” said White. “Restaurants need to be equipped for the new normal.”
“It is our desire,” said Smith “that our restaurants may once again thrive, both during and after this crisis.”
About Food and Dining Magazine
Locally owned for 17 years, Food & Dining is a Louisville-based publication focused on food & cooking, the enjoyment of wine & spirits, and the experience of dining out in Louisville, KY. We are as passionate about producing a great magazine as you are about cooking and eating great food.
About Mr and Mrs Smith LLC
A Louisville Web designer and Management company, specializing in creating amazing Web designs for local (Louisville, Kentucky) small to mid-sized businesses.