Better serve customers AND grow your bottom line
It's a totally fair question and we took coming up with the right answer very seriously. In fact, we sat at a few of our busiest partner locations and surveyed joe users face to face to understand why they use joe and if the app was in fact decreasing the amount of face time people had with baristas.
We learned a lot over those few days. The thing that jumped out more than anything, however, was that joe wasn't moving the queue from the counter to the phone. It moved people from Starbucks back to the coffee shops where they really wanted to order. Your customers will still order in-person when they have time. Now they can order through joe when they don't.
As a result, those regular customers that you see 3-4 times a week are often times still ordering in face to face when they have time to settle in and enjoy the environment at your coffee shop. But now, they're dropping in three or four extra times in a week when they are running late to work, picking up their kids from school, or simply don't have the time to wait for their drink to be made.
Your customers are settling for Starbucks
I remember talking to a customer named Parya in Bellevue about her experience using joe. She told me that she still takes the time to chat with baristas when she drives thru at her favorite coffee stand, Amore. But as a busy student with a jam packed schedule, she knows that with joe she can trust that she can get the coffee she loves even when she doesn't have time. Rather than settling for Starbucks, she gets the extra interaction with the barista that walks out her coffee and is able to get on with her day the way she prefers.
We've heard stories like these time and again. It's why we made the very deliberate decision not to offer a branded app. We couldn't in good faith promise our partners they would get what they needed from a branded app because the real competition isn't other indie shops - it's Starbucks. Fortunately, the decision to bring indie coffee under one app to deliver an incredible experience for coffee lovers has paid off. By coming together, coffee shop owners are strengthening the network, better serving their customers and growing their business.
Your in-person experience gets better with mobile ordering
An unsung aspect of mobile ordering is how much more efficient it makes your in-person order experience. Just a few mobile orders during rush can speed things up dramatically. The longest part of any coffee shop transaction isn't making the order. It's taking the order (especially for new customers), swiping the card, printing a receipt, and having the customer sign before moving on to the next customer.
That means, that for every regular customer that does decide to adopt mobile ordering for their daily coffee ritual, your line speeds up by the amount of time to do all those things listed above. In fact, our partner data suggests that once you hit a certain number of mobile orders each morning you begin to grow revenue up to $2 for every $1 you get from mobile ordering!
For every one in-person order, you can service 2-3 mobile orders. So when someone orders ahead, it cuts your line and allows you to acquire new customers passing by that would otherwise be deterred by a longer line. Faster lines and shorter wait times make life better for everyone - baristas get more tips per hour without feeling like it's extra work, you regulars get the convenience they crave, and your in-person orders get served more quickly.