Big brands masquerading as ghost restaurants on delivery apps


Some famous names in the restaurant industry appear under completely different names on popular delivery apps.

The trend is known as ghost restaurants.

Ghost restaurants appearing on delivery apps

A ghost restaurant, also known as a virtual restaurant, is a business that only offers take-out. He gets the nickname “ghost” because they don’t have a storefront and are devoid of customers to eat. This means that there are no tables and customers cannot come and get their own food. Everything is delivery. They use a third party delivery service to serve their customers. However, it’s important to note that restaurant chains use some of their locations as ghost restaurants.

A Ghost Kitchen, also known as the Cloud Kitchen or Dark Kitchen, is a facility with professional food preparation and cooking equipment. Restaurants use this space to produce delivery food only. In most cases, users already have a brick-and-mortar restaurant for on-site or take-out food service.

Likewise, large franchised restaurants are also using their existing stores as ghost kitchens to only serve delivery orders.

Who uses ghost restaurants and kitchens?

Everyone from Chick-fil-A to Fatburger, Famous Dave’s and Johnny Rockets, as well as many high-end restaurateurs are embracing the model. Small local restaurants and even food trucks are also hopping on the bandwagon to tackle the delivery segment of their business.

Benefits of ghost restaurants and kitchens

One of the reasons restaurateurs adopt these models is the cost. It’s much cheaper to rent a ghost kitchen or use an existing space just for delivery. And savings are everywhere.

You will need less space, and less space means a lower rental / lease price for the property. And that includes parking, which is a big deal for restaurants big and small. The savings also extend to staff as you will need fewer staff. Food waste, inventory, marketing and insurance can be optimized and improved. And the good news is that restaurants of all sizes can use these models to maintain their business or even grow.

This is a permanent change for the restaurant industry

The change brought about by digital technology was evident before the pandemic. Restaurant owners saw the benefits, but with the pandemic continuing, new business models had to be adopted. According to the National Restaurant Association (NRA), restaurants need to find innovative ways to promote their brands and expand their offerings online.

The ghost kitchens that were popping up to save money at restaurants now looked incredibly appealing. Not only that, but extending them to ghost restaurants was also appealing as people were already not dining due to COVID-19 restrictions. So the perfect storm was in place to make ghost kitchens and restaurants viable alternatives.

In addition, these models provide entrepreneurs in the restaurant industry with more options for specialization. Indeed, operations are lighter, they cost much less and can quickly adapt to new food trends. These are all features that will ensure that ghost kitchens and restaurants will be a permanent part of business operations in the restaurant industry.


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