Hasn’t there been a time when you wished you could just order your food online inspite of calling them up & going through all the trouble? Well, your wait is over! TastyKhana.in is one of the first online food ordering portal in India. They have processed more than 5 million orders with 6000+ restaurants and presence in 8 cities – Pune, Mumbai, Bangalore, Gurgaon, Delhi, Noida and Faridabad. It is backed by Delivery Hero Holding who have been transforming the way people order food online since 2010. Their aim is to make the process of ordering food convenient and as simple as possible. Their philosophy is Hi-Tech with Hi-Touch.
We spoke to Sheldon D’souza, CTO and Coufounder at TastyKahna to know more.
Technology Used and Technological Challenges Faced
Their current backbone consists of NGINX (“engine x”) web servers running on Ubuntu. They use PHP/MySQL and have native apps for Android and iOS to ensure the best service possible.
One of the challenges that was faced by them were on days of special promotions. Their servers could not keep up with the extra traffic. Although it is a good problem to have but it did impact the customers. They explored options and chose to migrate to Amazon Web Services for their auto-scaling technology to solve such technological challenge.
Major Successful Experiment that Paid Off
The major experiment is the recently unveiled new search engine powered by Google Map to facilitate an even easier and more convenient food ordering experience. They are the only food portal in India to adopt such a unique initiative to further simplify the experience of ordering food. The Google map feature enables the portal to extract the geographical location (address) of the user. The entire system is based on address – latitude, longitude. The moment a user selects his/her location, the system calculates the distance of the restaurant to the user’s address and provides a more accurate listing of restaurants that will guarantee delivery to the user’s location. This differentiated feature enables users to now search up to street name to get a list of restaurants that deliver to them.
The challenge to introduce this feature was an accurate area mapping so that the person ordering food has a clear idea that the restaurant would deliver the food till his home. This was done by Geo-fencing the restaurant’s delivery area through Google Maps. A lot of companies have been using Google Maps for pin-pointing the exact location, notably taxi booking vendors, etc., but very few have actually used it for mapping delivery areas. Taking accurate Latitude and Longitude of all the restaurants was the basic pre-requisite and was a painful task. A lot of restaurants had complex delivery areas. For e.g. In East, they would deliver only till 1 km but in west, it would be till 2 kms (as no signals are there), but in north, they won’t deliver due to the busy highway in front of them. To tackle such cases, they created complex polygons around the restaurant’s geo-coordinates. Since the time they have launched this feature, the speed of ordering has remarkably increased.
Services Offered By Them
The food can be ordered for takeaway or home delivery. It can also be pre-booked at a selected date and time. They promise to deliver within a time frame and 100% coverage against late orders, incomplete orders, menu-price differences etc. if you pay online.
Ordering food online definitely makes things a lot simpler. It is proper feedback about the order that seems to be missing from most players. If customer service can be assured, we think this kind of service has tremendous potential. We would love to see them expand to more cities.