How Balham's The Red Duck cut commissions through collection and delivery

The Story

Balham's 'Red Duck' is touted as the best contemporary Chinese food in South London and is known for uniting the new and old in an arousing, immensely pleasurable fashion, according to Jimi Famuwera, London Evening Standard. A truly ambitious operator, The Red Duck chose to face the pandemic by joining the new wave of takeaway-only restaurants. Their secret weapon? They serve with storekit! We spoke to Andreja Corokalo, their global sourcing specialist, to find out how they had gotten on during the launch.

The Challenge

The Red Duck faced one of the most challenging periods for the hospitality of our era. But driven by their desire to create a premium takeaway experience that customers would keep coming back to, they made it work. Opening during the lockdown, The Red Duck struggled to build business through partnering with well-known delivery giants. "The customer experience isn't personal because we didn't hold the data, couldn't benefit from it, and had no autonomy. These apps act on your behalf. "says Andreja. "Our customers who were ordering via Deliveroo become Deliveroo customers, not ours. So, as a brand, we became very limited in how much we could reach and communicate to customers." "If you're building a small brand from scratch, the last thing you want to do is to give potentially loyal customers away." Independent eateries like The Red Duck are using storekit's custom build eCommerce tools to help them to develop their business from scratch, forge lasting relationships and keep customers coming back with a no-hassle delivery & pick-up experience. "The plan for us is to switch off the delivery giants completely. I want us to grow organically and at our own place." says Andreja, "the first six months were really tough. We tried a couple of different solutions that weren't working for us." The turning point came when another restaurant introduced us to storekit. "It was like wow.. oh my God - amazing!' It had all of this functionality that we knew was so important for us to comfortably grow as a business." The pre-order function is another reason we knew storekit was the right fit for us. "For me, it's crucial that customers can slot an order in, in advance so you have a constant stream of revenue during downtimes you may not usually fill.'

"It had all of this functionality that we thought was important for us to be able to comfortably grow."

The Results

For us, the lifesaver feature from storekit was the time ordering slots, meaning restaurants can manage kitchen capacity with pre-slots. 'Before storekit, we struggled with the inability to allocate a certain amount of orders to certain slots. The kitchen would get overwhelmed, and everything would fall behind; it was a nightmare. It wasn't feasible to continue like that."

Using storekit to build a customised ordering solution for their online customers meant that The Red Duck no longer had to lose out on huge amounts of money to delivery giants. They also took back control of customer data by collecting intelligent insights using storekit. This meant that they were able to jumpstart their direct-to-consumer marketing. As a result, they saw a massive 30% saving on delivery commission costs, all while building a direct relationship with their customers.

With storekit, the team suddenly could say, 'Yes, I want 3 orders every 15 minutes' – boom, you just turn storekit on, and we are open for business!' At no point were we getting super overwhelmed with the number of orders. Storekit solved so many problems instantly and even allowed us to process some orders directly, so we didn't have to always rely on third-party apps. We took back control.'

Hankering some for Chinese cuisine? Check out the Red Duck at 1 Ramsden Rd, London SW12 8QZ.

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