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9 Tips to Accelerate User Acquisition for Food Tech Apps

Mrinal Parekh Mrinal Parekh, Senior Manager at CleverTap, has expertise in product, consumer, and digital marketing, with previous roles at Razorpay and Amazon.
9 Tips to Accelerate User Acquisition for Food Tech Apps

Restaurants and fast-food joints have been delivering food to our doorsteps for decades now. But recently, an altogether new vertical has disrupted the food and dining industry. The food tech revolution has brought our favorite restaurants right to our fingertips.
Driven by convenience and instant gratification, the food delivery market in the US is currently valued at over $30 billion — with online delivery representing over $4 billion in sales. Mobile apps account for over 40% of those orders — a percentage that will only grow given the rising number of on-the-go consumers reaching for their smartphones.
As a mobile marketer, you need to have a smart app awareness and user acquisition strategy in place to rise above the competition and capture your slice of this growing and evolving market.

App Awareness Tips to Deliver Success Right at Your Doorstep

Make these tips the cornerstone of your user acquisition strategy to drive traffic and app downloads.

  • Know your target audience




    1. Before you jump headlong into the food tech sphere, carry out a detailed study on your target demographic, competition, market realities, and trends. This will help you double-down on your core unique selling proposition (USP) and cook up a better recipe for success.


    1. Do you want to be a restaurant discovery platform or an aggregator? Do you want to create your food in-house or outsource last-mile delivery? These are pressing questions that only thorough research and a deep understanding of the market will help you answer.


    1. Remember, you don’t want to get lost in the crowd. You want to be a trusted brand with a unique and sustainable competitive advantage.

  • Help your brand stand out




    1. It’s easy to get lost in such a crowded market, so it’s essential to come up with a memorable name and eye-catching logo that are easy to recall.


    1. Be creative or quirky. The idea is to make an instantaneous impression on a potential user and be as memorable as possible. Preferably come up with a short name.


    1. You may also choose to include a brief tagline that incorporates food delivery specific keywords that your target user base is most likely to search for.


    1. For instance, US-based on-demand delivery player


    1. does a smart job by using regularly searched and relevant keywords like “food,” “delivery,” “order,” and “eats.”


  • Get your keyword research right




    1. Once you understand your target users, you’ll be able to identify the top search keywords you should include in your app store listing.


    1. Depending upon the type of food tech app, high traffic keywords like “food,” “delivery,” “restaurants,” “fast food,” “salads,” etc. could be important terms for you to target.

  • Grab eyeballs with an engaging app description




    1. Bringing potential users to your app store page is only half the battle. You need a compelling app description to encourage users to give your app a shot.


    1. Your app description should highlight:
      • App features: Discuss easy-to-use features like searching by restaurant or cuisine type, in-app reservations, etc.
      • App benefits: Spotlight the benefits users will experience with your app, like cashback on certain orders, guaranteed delivery times, etc.
      • App version and updates: Include the latest app version details, including the date of the latest update, previous bug fixes, and new feature releases. Users are more likely to download an app that’s actively improved and maintained.
      • Screenshots, videos and/or GIFs: Give potential users a preview of your app UI and functionality. Images should complement your app store page text as you add an eye-catching visual.

For instance, US-based DoorDash highlights the ease of ordering food from nearby restaurants with a carousel format that includes images from the actual app.
Keep your app description copy concise and focused on the value you offer users to encourage them to tap that “download” button.

    1. Showcase positive ratings and reviews

When potential users see high ratings and favorable reviews, they’re more likely to download your app and give it a try.
This sounds like a simple enough correlation, but the only way you can secure high ratings and great reviews is by delivering a good product and an excellent user experience.
In the above instance, a high average app rating of 4.8 for DoorDash is additional motivation for users to download the app.

    1. Localize your language

If your food tech app is available in markets where English is not the primary language, you need to localize the language on your app store page. It’s essential to establish a personal connection with potential users right at the start.
Leading food discovery and delivery platforms such as Yelp! and Zomato have driven home their competitive advantage in markets like Indonesia by choosing to localize their language to suit regional tastes and preferences.
This doesn’t just lay the foundation for better user acquisition — it also drives user engagement.

    1. Encourage web users to download your app

Make no mistake, it’s important to establish your presence on both web and mobile. You can’t afford to miss out on users who will search for and order food online.
This target-ready user base can be encouraged to install your app with a simple “Download Our App” button on your home page that redirects to your app store page.
You could even incentivize app downloads by offering a first order discount or free delivery promo code.
Take US-based food delivery player Their quirky website copy hooks users and creates a compelling call to action, encouraging users who land on their website to download “The Hunger App.”

    1. Invest in app indexing

Only 40% of users search for apps in the app store, which means that 60% of users make food delivery-related searches on desktop or mobile web browsers. That’s why app indexing is so important to app awareness and user acquisition.
According to Google, “App Indexing lets Google index apps just like websites. Deep links to your Android or iOS app appear in Google Search results, letting users get to your native mobile experience quickly, landing exactly on the right content within your app.”
Adding deep links to your app means a simple food delivery related search will display your app as a search result, directing interested users to your app store page.
Not only does this increase app discoverability, it also helps you re-engage existing users by directing them to the app on their device.

    1. Leverage your existing email list

Segment customers who have accessed only your website and direct them to your app. Run a drip campaign that includes an incentive to download. This will help engage users with your app, and communicate your latest product features, benefits, and offers. sends emails to its existing web users, encouraging them to download their app.


Event Strategy Mix

When users install and use your food tech app, they engage in different in-app activities that can be tracked and monitored as specific events at multiple stages of the app user lifecycle.
Try these tactics to improve your app awareness and user acquisition for different types of user segments –

User SegmentTactics

Unaware User

  • Invest in SEO and ASO to spread awareness about your brand and product.
  • Leverage App Indexing toprompt users who restaurant discovery or food delivery  related searches to land  on your app store page.

Aware but not Acquired User

  • Prompt web users of your platform to migrate to your app via the website.
  • Run SMS or email drip campaigns after web users have made 5 or more orders. Incentivize app downloads through promo codes, first-time app purchase discounts, free delivery etc.
  • Invest in social media retargeting to prompt downloads for users who have made 5 or more orders on your website.

Acquired User

  • Create and deliver a seamless app onboarding experience through an informative tutorial or walkthrough wizard on first-time app launch.
  • Run a “Welcome!” or “Thank You for Downloading” email drip campaign on days 1, 3, and 7 after app download informing the user of key features, nearby restaurants, hot deals, promo codes, etc.

Key Business Metrics and KPIs to Track Success

Now you have several key strategies for improving user awareness and acquisition for your food tech app. But how will you know if they’re working?
Track the following metrics to gauge your success and keep improving during this stage of the app user lifecycle –

MetricDescriptionMeasurement FormulaIndustry Benchmark

App Ranking

High ranking on a search engines or app store results means a greater chance of app discoverability, download, and adoption

Influenced by number of downloads, app store rankings, and reviews

The long-term objective must be to feature in the top 20 food tech apps across Android and iOS in your region

Install Rate

The number of clicks on an ad that eventually result in download and installation of your app

(Total Number of App Installs/Total Number of Clicks on the Ad) x 100

Average Install Rate = 26.40%

Cost Per Install (CPI)

The amount you pay per installation of your app through a paid ad campaign

Total Spent on Ads/Total Number of App Installs

Average CPI = $6

App Store Page Conversion (APSC) Rate

The percentage of apps downloaded and installed on a user’s device after landing on the app page

(Total Number of App Installs/Total Number of App Page Views) x 100

Average APSC Rate = 26.25%*
(*across Android and iOS)


What’s Next?

Rome wasn’t built in a day… and neither is mobile app success!
This is a gradual and organic process that can take time. It’s important to be patient and also think ahead.
The food tech space is a very competitive market. Your first pillar of success depends on boosting brand visibility, creating top-of-mind recall, and continuing to acquire new users that can be nurtured down the conversion funnel.
I will address the value of user onboarding for your food delivery app in my next blog post, as you lay the foundation for delivering an amazing user experience.

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Last updated on March 4, 2024