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Burger King elevates foreign sales with Swiggy app partnership

Burger King has joined forces with ordering application Swiggy to bring seamless delivery options to consumers in India, highlighting the brand’s dedication to reaching new markets via mobile.

Burger King is tapping Swiggy’s capabilities to bring its hamburgers and fast food items to a slew of consumers in foreign markets. Swiggy will ensure that logistics for all of Burger King’s 23 outlets in Delhi, Mumbai, Pune, Bengaluru and Gurgaon are taken care of.

“The competition in the quick service industry is fierce, and even incremental advances in convenience can make all the difference with consumers – leading to increased revenues and longer-term engagement,” said Omer Kaplan, chief marketing officer and co-founder of ironSource, Tel Aviv, Israel.

“According to a report commissioned by the National Restaurant Association and mobile provider LevelUp, an order-ahead feature — offered via mobile app or online — accounted for nearly five percent of their sales in the first three months after it was introduced. The LevelUp research indicates that customers who have placed an order online visit the restaurant 67 percent more frequently than customers who haven’t.”

Mobile ordering dissemination
As mobile ordering continues to gain traction in the United States market, Burger King is attempting to take the first plunge and begin expanding the capability elsewhere. Now, consumers in Indian regions will be able to place orders and pay for meals via the Swiggy app.

Swiggy claims to maintain its own fleet of delivery drivers, who offer consumers multiple payment options as well as no minimum order. This strategy could bring even more mobile users into Swiggy’s corner, as often times, consumers are swayed from placing an order if the meal price is not high enough to warrant free delivery.

Additionally, this partnership has the potential to drive more impulse purchases. If a consumer comes down with a craving for fries while he or she is at work, he or she can easily place an order for that item without having to add additional meals to meet a delivery quota.

Swiggy claims that customers will be able to enjoy their hamburgers within 35 minutes after ordering via the app. Both companies sought to create a large splash in the hyper-local delivery sector, which relies so heavily on mobile.

“Burger King has innovated its menu to adopt to Indian culture and Indian diets, and this has brought Burger King success as a leading Western franchise in India,” said Guillaume Lelait, general manager at Fetch, San Francisco. “Burger King is expanding locations throughout India and is expected to show a 21 percent increase.

“India has been quoted as the ‘next high growth super market for smartphones,’ and for good reason. India’s top cities are flooding in with young professionals who are more tech-savvy than ever. This younger generation is hungrier for tech and mobile food services than ever before.”

Burger King is also trying to create disruption in the mobile payment space.

The brand’s recent decision to offer MasterCard’s MasterPass alongside PayPal’s payment options speaks to its desire to market to Android customers and suggests more quick service marketers will broaden their mobile payment partners rather than rely on a single platform (see story).

Staying competitive
Nowadays, any major fast food chain must offer mobile and online food delivery options to its customers. An optimal way of staying competitive in the food and beverage industry is to offer these features within the branded app, as well as a third-party delivery app such as Swiggy, Postmates or GrubHub.

Fellow quick service restaurant marketer Chipotle Mexican Grill is highlighting the potency of offering promotions via third-party mobile ordering apps by enabling Postmates users to partake in a social media contest to win 100 days of free burritos (see story).

Burger King may experience a surge in digital sales in India if news of the partnership reaches many ears.

“It’s clear that integrating mobile technology more deeply into the restaurant experience can only benefit both restaurants and consumers, especially in emerging markets like India which are more mobile-first than more developed markets,” ironSource’s Mr. Kaplan said. “The potential is huge, and if global companies want to take advantage of it, understanding local spending habits and finding solutions which plug into them will be key.

“In this case – mobile is a critical component, and partnering with a company offering the right technology seems like a smart move.”

Final Take
Alex Samuely, staff writer on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York