Rapid delivery apps, or apps that deliver groceries within 10-30 minutes of app order, are attracting millions of users as well as tons of big name investors. PitchBook estimates that investors have coughed up $14 billion into these services since the beginning of 2021, giving rapid delivery apps the capital to improve and optimize - and it makes perfect sense why they’re getting so much attention. Because of the pandemic, users have made it a habit to start ordering their groceries through apps, and receiving those groceries within 30 minutes of an app order is a pretty innovative concept.
Rapid delivery apps are largely operating out of major cities across the UK, US, and Europe, with a few first movers leading the market in these areas - Getir, Flink, Gorillas, Gopuff, Weezy, Dija, Jiffy, Fancy and Snappy are all notable names. However, with competition rising (smartphone use of grocery delivery apps rose over 40% in 2020 according to eMarketer) and such a large amount of capital being poured into these services in only a year, it’s becoming challenging for rapid delivery grocery apps to attract and hang on to users. Ultimately, everyone is chasing market dominance, but only a few will get to be the app of choice.
So, how can you crush the competition, reach more users for your rapid delivery app, and ensure they stick around? Here are three strategies to get you started.
Reach users first and keep them longer
Many users are already using rapid delivery apps, but the space is still fairly new - with most companies established just last year in 2020. There are millions of users who are unaware they can get Advil delivered in minutes without ever leaving the house, and it’s important to align your UA strategy to reach those users before the competition does first.
Think about the potential for growth by reaching app users directly on devices while they’re setting up their new phones. With 95% of users downloading 40% of the apps that will be installed throughout the lifetime of the device (that’s a long time) during the first 48 hours after purchasing their new phone, device setup is a critical touchpoint to become the app of choice.
For example, ironSource Aura uses contextual information to place your app in front of users who are likely to engage during a customized device set up experience.
Especially in such a young industry, optimizing your marketing tactics towards attracting users that will be loyal to your app is vital to beating out the competition. But a solid UA strategy must accompany a solid product, which leads us to the next point.
Choose the delivery model that optimizes convenience
Ultimately, users order from rapid delivery apps because they want their items fast, and they are even willing to pay more for it. To attract and keep users, you should be doing everything you can to make your service the most convenient and efficient - and that starts with the delivery model you choose.
With most users ordering from rapid delivery services for urgent essentials or last minute items, these companies are fitting into users’ lives for the in-between, spontaneous moments. As people continue to live hectic and demanding lives, it’s important to position your app as a convenience offering through an integrated model.
Some rapid delivery apps claim a vertically integrated model - where they source and own their inventory. In these cases, the service handles the warehouse and delivery logistics. Other apps have taken it a step further by hiring couriers as full time employees, ensuring that there are always people on standby to deliver. At the end of the day, choosing one of these models and sticking to it will give you the upper hand in achieving the fastest speeds in the long run.
Once the bones are good, you can start thinking about your value proposition that will set you apart.
Differentiate your product offering
As we mentioned, the number of rapid delivery apps has exploded in the past year, making it hard to stand out. To acquire users that will likely stick around, focus on building a product that offers something unique and valuable.
Ultimately, you don’t have to be the fastest to get a leg up. You can differentiate your product according to service and type of items offered. For example, you can increase your delivery range, allowing you to reach users outside of major cities. You could also offer items from specific retailers, such as local or organic grocery stores. The Istanbul based app, Getir, not only boasts about its ability to deliver over 1,000 products, but also differentiates itself by delivering around the clock.
It’s also important to consider differentiating your product by offering promotions. Since time is of the essence in the rapid delivery space, it’s important to take responsibility for underperformance - try offering some sort of compensation when an order is late. You could also entice users to sign up by offering a promo with the first order. You could use marketing channels, such as ironSource Aura which has a full screen offer placement, to show these promos.
As an example, Getir increases its value by not charging a delivery fee for orders over £10. By showing users that you care about quality and their needs, you’ll retain more for the long-term - over 70% of users stick with a brand with friendly employees and quality customer service according to Nextiva.
In this incredibly saturated market, differentiation is a must. There are infinite ways to make your product stand out, and it all comes down evolving and innovating in a unique way.
Rapid delivery apps are among one of the most innovative and disruptive concepts that came out of the last couple of years - it’s rare for a new idea to affect the market as much as rapid delivery has. On top of that, investors across the world, including Ophelia Brown from Blossom Capital, are saying they have never seen anything like the amount of capital that has gone into rapid delivery all at once, allowing them to grow in an unprecedented way. So, it’s clear that rapid delivery apps are not going anywhere, and with all this funding and attention being poured into the industry, competition is only going to increase. It’s valuable to prepare yourself for that competition by finding new ways to attract users and keep them around. Looking at your business model, finding ways to differentiate your product, and analyzing your UA strategy are great places to start.