How Domino's Pizza used apps to eliminate the competition

It's Thursday night and you've just got home late from work again. Your partner is grumbling for a hot meal, and your child’s dramatically proclaimed “I'm starving!” and thrown themselves on the floor.

You open the fridge and your eyes are met by a half-full container of milk and leftovers from four days ago. On the brink of despair, you wrack your brain for a solution, and then it dawns on you: Domino's Pizza.

Since becoming the first pizza company to offer home delivery in Australia, Domino's has developed a culture of creating and implementing original ideas. Regularly reporting explosive growth in Australia and beyond thanks to its adoption of online ordering and its mobile apps which are available for download across all major devices, the emphatic global success of Dominos Pizza is no accident.

Domino's apps for iOS and Android

“There's an app for that” is a phrase we hear often these days, but Domino's was one of the first pizza companies to embrace mobile technology. The Domino's apps for iOS and Android are loaded with features. From pizza customisation capability, to order tracking, multiple payment options, and order/delivery notifications, Domino’s mobile apps come with all the bells and whistles.

Domino’s apps allow users to design their pizza down to the finest detail, and with more than 1.4 million pizza combinations available, customers are sure to find something that will satisfy their hunger. With live support for users who have questions related to any part of the ordering process, Domino’s have covered the mobile ordering market well.

SMS ordering

Texting is like breathing for many of us: We read, compose and send texts without a second thought. Domino's has capitalised on this phenomenon by allowing registered users to text in orders. Users sign up for a Domino's account, add in their payment details and a mobile number and send in an SMS to place an order. Occasionally Domino's will run promotions to entice users to try SMS ordering since it's still a new concept for the company. So far, SMS ordering been embraced wholeheartedly.

GPS driver tracking

In a normal pizza-ordering scenario, you pick up your phone, tell an employee what you'd like to have delivered and listen to your growling stomach as you wait for the delivery person to show up at your door. Domino's GPS Driver Tracker was created to answer two questions: How can we make our delivery fleet safer and how can we add value for our customers?

The Driver Tracker unit addressed both of these goals.

By monitoring speed and driving techniques, the Domino's GPS Driver Tracker has helped reduce road incidents by 50 per cent. As a result, delivery workers, other drivers, and vehicles on the roads are safer than ever before.

On the customer side, hungry pizza lovers can track their precious meal from the moment preparation begins to the second it's delivered to their door. Customers can see the exact route that the driver is taking to their home, along with the name of their order and a photograph of their driver.

The Domino's GPS Driver Tracker has also provided the company with an inordinate amount of data about delivery times, traffic and delivery routes. Domino's is using this info (big data) to streamline its systems and to keep its drivers safe.

Domino's on Apple Watch

For diehard Apple fans, the Apple Watch is a must-have item. Domino's is parlaying the popularity of this gadget into a business generator by making it easy for customers to order pizza directly from their wrists. Users can also use their Smartwatch to track their pizza delivery in real-time.

The Offers app

Domino's realises that it's tough for customers to keep track of paper promotions, so they've digitised all of their coupons and placed them inside one convenient app.

When customers download the app and log in, vouchers are customised by location so that users always have valid coupons at their fingertips. The conditions and expiration dates attached to each coupon are clearly marked so that there is no room for confusion. The app is available for iOS and Android operating systems.

Fresh and fast delivery

When you're aching for a fresh baked pizza, you're bound to search for the quickest way possible to get your hands on it. In some of their stores throughout Australia, Domino's has managed to perfect its preparation, cooking and delivery process to offer customers a 10-minute delivery guarantee.

It's taken the company five years to achieve this ambitious goal and it wouldn't have been possible without other technological advances like the GPS Driver Tracker, Domino's apps and website. The Fresh Fast Baked certifications are displayed in stores where a 10-minute local delivery timeframe is safe and practical.

The DRU Drone

As Domino's adopts new technologies, it isn't seeking to just challenge the competition, it's trying to soar right over their heads. DRU, the autonomous delivery drone, will soon be the newest member of Domino's delivery fleet. The DRU project is the first Civil Aviation Authority-approved commercial drone delivery service in the world. Domino's believes that the DRU project will give them added insights into customer needs.

So, what does all this tell us? Although Domino's makes a mean pepperoni pizza, there is more to the company than meets the eye. This pizza giant is also a tech company, and CEO Don Meiji knows it. In 2016, Domino's online sales surged past its in-store sales, and the company observed impressive online growth in Australia, Europe and Japan.

In order to keep up with the demand created by online ordering, Domino's will be expanding its bricks-and-mortar stores in all of the aforementioned countries.

In addition to building its online presence, Domino's is drilling down into its pizza-making systems to expose flaws and inefficiencies. With its GPS tracking systems, the pizza giant is perfecting tools that will ensure customers always get a fresh, hot pizza, whether they’re walking, biking or driving to their local Dominos to pick it up.

What do customers think of Domino's tech-based offerings?

The ratings speak for themselves: The Domino's app has been downloaded from the Apple Store hundreds of thousands of times, and it maintains an average rating of 4.8 out of 5 stars. On Android, the results are similar, with the Domino's app holding a 4.7/5 star rating.

Users love the fun features on the apps, like the pizza slot machine feature on the iPhone that allows you to randomly generate different order ideas, and find the apps easy to use in general. In the US, Domino's online ordering accounts for 30 percent of the company's sales, and thousands of new users download the apps each week.

When it comes to tech, Domino's has done it right. The company's explosive growth is evidence that digital ordering is the way of the future, and it’s a safe bet that this is just the beginning for Domino’s Pizza.

Resources

Getting Apps Right: How Domino's Is Beating the Odds

Domino's CEO Don Meij says will continue tech investments, expanding outlets after record profit

Domino's Technology and Innovation