The Coaching Team at Dumpling is often asked what sorts of items can be helpful for running a delivery business, so we have compiled a list of what business owners often recommend. Keep in mind that your business may be different from other businesses on the platform and all of these are just suggestions. You can decide which of these options apply to you and know that none of these are needed immediately upon starting your business.
#1 Food Safety Knowledge & Tools Will Keep You From Getting the Cold Shoulder
Food temperatures are not only a matter of safety, but can make a big impact on customers (which impacts your repeat business, reviews, and referrals!). The last thing you want to do is deliver melted ice cream or cold rotisserie chicken to a customer. We recommend obtaining a local food safety permit (sometimes called a “food handler’s card”) as the training course for these will help you know when food is safe to eat, what temperatures food needs to be kept at, and even what foods should never be stored next to each other. These permits are usually quite affordable ($0-$15 depending on your state), and you can even advertise that you have one to potential customers. Coolers, insulated bags, and ice packs are the top recommended items from Dumpling business owners. Consider the weather in your area, the time the items will be with you before they reach the customer, and the size of the orders you plan to complete when deciding which options are right for you.
#2 Take Care of Your Body with Support Items that Take the Load Off
Next consider the weight of the items you are delivering, as well as if you are delivering to apartments or homes with many stairs. Some go as far as getting back braces or specialized shoe insoles to ease this burden on their body, but many swear by stair climbing carts or wagons.
#3 Cleanliness is Key when Transporting Customer’s Items
Always make sure the part of your vehicle where you are storing customer items is clean. This can mean keeping a car vacuum handy (or a monthly package at a local car wash) or even a barrier to keep your furry friends out of that area of the vehicle. Having paper towels and a cleaner on board will help when a customer’s items do spill (it happens to the best of us!). Utilizing something like a crate or net can help customers’ liquids (or large items like watermelon) from breaking and spilling into the rest of their groceries.
#4 Organization Helps Optimize Delivery Efficiency
Organization of your car is not necessary to run a delivery business, but it can help with efficiency and our top shoppers often bring it up as a pro tip. Consider having a pocket organizer that fits your vehicle. These organizers can be a great spot for extra bags, business cards and/or flyers, thank you cards, envelopes for receipts, deli forms or blank grocery lists (for the occasion where it is easier to use a handwritten list), pens, notebooks (mileage tracking!), and sanitizers. Business owners who do gift shopping even keep a pair of scissors and tape in their vehicles.
#5 Outfit Your Car Like it’s Your Office
Remember that you are spending a lot of time in your car and it is a good idea to have a first aid kit and other emergency supplies on hand (Take a look at this AAA article for more ideas), as well as a roadside assistance package. Not only are extra snacks and water great for emergencies but keeping them in your car can stop you from impulse spending while you are out shopping. Some people even keep extra clothes on hand in case of spills or weather changes, as well as extra battery packs for their phones. Things like dash cameras or dashboard phone displays can also help with safety but are not always needed.