Technology

Hello, you can get your food online

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With e-commerce gaining becoming more convenient, there are several platforms available to help people order for different things online. One of these is HelloFood which lets users order food from different restaurants and delivers it to them. The platform got the Best E-commerce award at the recent Digital Awards. PHOTO BY DOMINIC BUKENYA 

By Emmy Omongin

Posted  Wednesday, September 3   2014 at  10:48
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You are at home or at your desk at work and want to have a restaurant meal but don’t have the time or energy to go to one. What do you do? Order the food online.
At the recent Digital Impact Awards Africa, a platform that can help you do this, Hellofood, got an award for Best E-commerce.
It allows people in Kampala to order food from more than 50 restaurants around town.
This is not a new model of business. Ron Kawamara Managing Director Hello Food divulges; “We are in 44 countries and within Africa, we are in 14 countries.
“Most people these days have cell phones that access the internet. So we are using existing technology to bring people convenience, speed and variety. You don’t have to sit for hours to go for lunch. It will find you at your desk.”
He adds, “Our application is available on Google Play for free download on iOS and Android operating system. In Kampala, the App boasts more than 2,000 downloads.
“The website, hellofood.ug, is growing at a rate of roughly 25 per cent per month.

How it the website works
• Log on to the website
• Select a meal from the restaurant of your choice.
• Insert your contact details. If you do not have a physical address, a provision for describing where exactly you live (be it behind a tree) called “more info” is availed.
• After filling in the order form, the user submits it.
• The meal is then processed and in an hour the order is delivered.

How the App works
• Open the app on your phone,
• Input where you live, it then brings restaurants around your area [that are affiliated to Hellofood], key in the directions and your contact details.
• Select and pick a meal from the menu and
• Click submit.
• Within 40 minutes to one hour, your meal is delivered to your home or workplace.
Also, corporations can order lunch for their employees.

Snags
Kawamara admits that the biggest challenge this e-commerce (and almost all e-commerce business in Uganda) faces is that a lot of places do not have physical addresses. That means they have to spend a lot of time and money to locate these places.

Forms of payment
Currently, the only form of payment is Cash on Delivery. “We plan to expand to other towns in Uganda as we integrate mobile money and debit/credit card payments,” Kawamara adds.
There you go, get your phone and order a meal.

E-commoerce platforms
Food. TakeawayUG is also another way of placing your food orders using your mobile or laptop. It can be accessed through their website; www.takeawayug.com.
Clothes and gadgets. Kaymu is the latest online shopping trend in the city. Clients can order for clothes, shoes, smartphones, and any other accessories through the website, www.kaymu.co.ug. Thee order is instantly delivered to them.
Cars. Through Checki, Ugandans are able to browse through the latest cars in the market and be able to buy them online on their website checki.co.ug.
Groceries. Homeduuka is one of fast rising e-commerce companies in Uganda. It delivers groceries to your doorstep. One may order online via Homeduuka.com