Although San Francisco is a great place to dine out, San Francisco Citysearch and Food.com are catering to those who`d rather order online for take-out or delivery. Food.com and Citysearch plan to bring their online restaurant service to as many as 20 cities this year. "Citysearch brings us millions of users that we didn`t have," Sal Fuentes, vice president of marketing for Food.com, tells InternetRetailer.com.
Citysearch, a unit of Ticketmaster, operates information portal sites for metropolitan areas throughout the U.S., offering links to restaurants, hotels, movie theaters and real estate offices. Until recently, its links to restaurants mostly led to informational web sites. Now, under its arrangement with Food.com, Citysearch will connect restaurants to Food.com`s e-commerce platform, enabling them to take orders and payments online.
Fuentes says Food.com already provides online ordering and payment services for more than 2,000 restaurants nationwide. Participating restaurants have three ways to let customers order online under the Food.com/Citysearch agreement: through a link on Food.com, a link on Citysearch.com and directly through a restaurant’s own web site. Under each option, customers link to an online e-commerce-activated menu set up and hosted by Food.com.
Restaurants send their menus to Food.com for loading on a web server and then provide links to their web sites. Because Food.com uses open architecture technology, restaurants have the option of having online orders integrate directly with their POS systems for complete automation, Fuentes says. They also may receive orders at a fax machine or simply on a web page.
Food.com charges a one-time setup fee of $299, plus a monthly maintenance fee of about $30. In addition, it charges transaction fees equal to 5% per order.