Large chains, such as Pizza Hut and Papa John’s are currently accepting online orders at several of their West Michigan locations. Several other area pizzerias plan on joining them in the e-tail business in months to come.
Papa John’s currently offers online ordering at all of its locations nationwide, including their 4236 Kalamazoo Ave. and 2367 44th St. Kentwood locations.
Papa John’s cyber customers may place their orders outside of store hours and choose a specific time for the pizza to be made and delivered later that day.
“Online ordering has been a very valuable service for our restaurant and people have definitely been taking advantage of it,” said Curt Teachout, manager at Caledonia’s 6450 100th St. SE Pizza Hut. “Customers seem to enjoy the convenience of ordering without making a phone call. So far it has been a well-utilized ordering option.”
Pizza Hut does not offer online ordering at all of its restaurants. Online ordering is currently available at its 6670 Kalamazoo Ave. and 5524 Division Ave. Kentwood restaurants, but not at its 4257 Kalamazoo Ave. location.
Currently about 1,000 of Domino’s more than 7,000 outlets offer online ordering. Their 1429 60th St. location is currently not accepting online orders.
Hungry Howie’s Pizza offers online ordering at select restaurants in Ohio and North Carolina, but not at their 5428 Eastern Ave. SE location.
Smaller chains such as Peppino’s Pizza, which operates 12 pizzerias across West Michigan, are breaking into the online ordering market.
Peppino’s has been developing an online ordering system for several months and by the end of January, hope to offer online ordering at all 12 of their locations, including their 9952 Cherry Valley Ave. restaurant in Caledonia and their Kentwood location at 2903 Breton Road.
“Online ordering is designed for the convenience of the customer. For example, you can order lunch on a Blackberry in the middle of a business meeting without making a peep and have it ready for pick up or delivery by the time the meeting is over,” said Peppino’s Pizza Franchise Director Eric Tuinstra.
“You can program your favorite pizza into the computer, save coupons and payment preferences, or even set delivery times for future dates.”
Area restaurant managers said hungry patrons should not be afraid their order will be lost in transition.
“We haven’t missed an order yet. When customers order online, it comes through our system just like a phone order or an order from the counter,” said Teachout. “The only one who ever knows the difference is the manager when he details the source of the delivery on his computer.”
Tuinstra agreed, saying that freak accidents do occur, but a customer should order with confidence when ordering from their computer.
“There’s a possibility the pizzeria could miss a fax, lose signal on a cell phone, have the battery die on a pager or other instances,” Tuinstra said. “Other than that there really aren’t any disadvantages to online ordering.”