Uber Eats is finally bringing group ordering to its food delivery platform, allowing friends or work colleagues to take individual responsibility for choosing their own dish as part of a larger order.
While this will prove popular among its tens of millions of consumer users, Uber has also been pushing its food delivery service in the business realm, and this should prove to be a particularly big draw for group ordering. Indeed, Uber Eats for Business launched last year to help companies manage their employees’ food spend from a central dashboard, but it doesn’t include a facility for groups of employees placing orders collectively.
In terms of how it works, the order instigator hits the Start Group Order button on a menu, and then shares a link with whomever they want to be part of the meal. Each individual then chooses their dish (they can only order from the same restaurant), and the person who initiated the order then completes the checkout.
But there is at least one more reason why group ordering is a notable addition to Uber Eats’ armory, and that relates to remaining competitive.
As Uber struggles to cut losses across its business, Uber Eats represents its fastest growing unit, with sales growing 64% in the past year and a customer base of well over 90 million active users. But, as the saying goes, it’s important for Uber to keep up with the Joneses — group ordering is already a staple part of rival services.
Postmates launched a similar group ordering feature just a few months ago, while DoorDash has enabled this for years. Grubhub has a similar feature specifically for businesses, which even allows each user to pay separately.
Indeed, that is one feature that is sorely missing from Uber Eats’ new group ordering feature — the ability to pay separately would have been a major boon. But that is something we can perhaps expect in the future.