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While home delivery is the food service trend of the moment, click and collect – the practice of ordering food online and collecting it from a restaurant – is also emerging as another revenue opportunity for town centre restaurants, according to the latest GO Technology report from CGA and Zonal.

Of the 5,000 UK adults surveyed by CGA, one in five (22%) have used click and collect.  Despite being a modest figure relative to delivery, which more than half (58%) of GO Technology respondents have embraced, click and collect is still in its relative infancy in the branded restaurant sector, but as operators adopt it, more consumers are likely to use the service.

However, for it to be successful, location is everything with large proportions of click and collect consumers based in city centres (28%) or town centres (30%), where the distance needed to travel to restaurants is often low. Unsurprisingly, it is less popular with consumers located in suburban and rural areas.

This suggests that click and collect is a convenient way for consumers to pick up a meal when there’s no time to prepare food (35%) or as an alternative to a traditional takeaway (40%) when travelling home from work or a day out shopping.  And it seems busy parents are fond of click and collect with more than half (56%) using the service.

“Our GO Technology research shows that convenience is key when it comes to click and collect and it’s most appealing to those who are looking to grab something appetising for the family on their way home.

“This is where click and collect wins over delivery, as you don’t run the risk of arriving home after the delivery person.  But, in order to deliver a seamless experience, integrated technology is vital to customer satisfaction,” said Zonal Marketing Technologies Commercial Director, David Charlton.

For those operators that do embrace click and collect the rewards are there for the taking as the demographic alignment with delivery consumers is 90%, but the margins tend to be more favourable on click and collect.  Also, click and collect consumers are more loyal to the brands they like (48%) compared to the all-consumer average (36%), so repeat visits are to be won if a customer’s experience is good.

With an average of 9.7 brands in their repertoires, click and collect users have plenty of other places to go if their experience isn’t good.

That puts pressure on operators to nail the basics, like getting orders right and having them ready on time – the top two frustrations of click and collect users. The integration of ordering and operational systems can solve these problems and ensure a smooth click and collect service.

David added: “Having the right technology infrastructure in place is key to click and collect success. With click and collect customers also more likely to engage directly with brands, rather than third party providers, operators need to make sure that it’s easy for them to access the service through their own websites and apps, which in turn help to build sales and loyalty.”

Because click and collect consumers tend to be early adopters, it has the potential to become more mainstream over the next few years, with a fifth (22%) of consumers who have not yet used click and collect finding the idea appealing.

Karl Chessell, CGA Business Unit Director, Retail and Food, concluded: “With visits to restaurants, pubs and bars largely flat, click and collect offers an opportunity to add incremental sales, build brand loyalty and recover some of the margin that is lost on third party delivery.

“Smartphones have made it easier than ever for consumers to order their food, and our GO Technology survey shows there is a worthwhile market to be won. But click and collectors’ expectations are high, and there is a heavy responsibility on brands to deliver a well-executed and good value experience.”

To access a copy of the full report, visit here.


About Zonal:

Zonal is the leading provider of integrated hospitality management solutions to over 16,000 leisure and hospitality businesses across the UK.  For 40 years the company has been working closely with clients to enhance the customer experience through market leading technology, experienced people and a partnership approach to business.

About CGA:

CGA is the world’s leading business intelligence and strategic consultancy provider for the out of home leisure market; the definitive source of integrated consumer insight and market measurement informing strategies for our clients’ growth. We live, love and breathe our industry, harnessing our passion and knowledge to help the market make smarter and more informed decisions. CGA works closely with consumers, retailers, suppliers, trade bodies and government so that our expert consultants can bring every strategic insight to life. To learn more, visit:

About the data:

Zonal’s GO Technology, in conjunction with CGA, is a quarterly survey that tracks the technology habits of 5,000 nationally representative British consumers.


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