10 Business Secrets You Can Steal from This Franchise’s Clever Ordering App

Mobile App Design Best Practices

The way consumers make purchases and interact with businesses has changed drastically in recent years. And nothing has made more of an impact than the introduction of mobile technology.

For that reason, businesses like Wawa have found success by creating apps that make doing business easier than ever for consumers. The East Coast chain of convenience stores and gas stations introduced its app to allow customers to order items right on their mobile devices, making it quicker to pick up and pay for purchases.

Mobile App Design Best Practices

Your business can learn some important lessons from looking at apps from other companies like Wawa. Here are 10 business secrets you can take away from this particular app.

Apply Mobile Tech to Local Business

The first lesson you can take away from the Wawa app is just how valuable mobile technology can be even when you’re dealing with customers in person. The app gives customers a way to make the buying process at the store even quicker. So local businesses that just brush off this type of technology could be doing so at their own peril.

Make Ordering Simple

The app reduces Wawa’s menu to a few simple categories which you select to narrow your choices. In your own business, don’t confuse customers with a bewildering array of choices. Give a few simple packages to choose from which are all inclusive of your services.

Make Repeat Buying Even Easier

The app also has a feature that lets customers favorite products they buy regularly, making repeat purchases even easier. In any business, making it as easy as possible for people to purchase regularly can really help your bottom line.

Take Advantage of Location Features

Mobile technology offers a unique opportunity for you to provide a really great experience for customers. In Wawa’s case, the location features make it easy for customers to order from the store that’s closest to them. And then it uses the customer’s location to determine when to start compiling an order so that the food is as fresh as possible but still ready for pickup.

Stay in Constant Contact

The app also features notifications so customers can stay updated on the progress of their orders. Staying in constant contact with customers throughout the buying process can help you ensure that there are no mix-ups and customers know exactly what to expect.

Put an Emphasis on Customer Loyalty

The Wawa app also allows customers to easily earn rewards when they use Wawa gift cards. In any business, rewarding customers for loyalty and repeat purchases is a great practice that can help you grow that essential repeat business.

Offer an Array of Payment Methods

While the app does make it possible for people to pay with their mobile devices, it also allows people to pay with other methods once they make it to the store. So while it might be tempting to focus on the newest and trendiest payment methods, especially when mobile apps are involved, it’s still important to give customers options since people have varying preferences when it comes to payments.

Let Customers Customize the Experience

On that note, it’s a good idea to give customers a few ways to customize the experience to their own preferences. In the app, customers can choose their products, store locations, payment methods or even look at nutrition info for various items. So not every customer has to use the app in exactly the same way.

But Guide Them with Few Choices

However, beware of offering too many choices. The ability to customize the experience with a few different choices is great. But if you offer too many choices throughout the process, it can get overwhelming. The Wawa app features a few categories on the main page so that customers can make a quick decision and then move quickly through the process.

Always Keep the Actual Buying Process in Mind

Some apps or services seem to just add an extra step or complication to the buying process. But your goal should always be to shorten the process, creating time saving solutions that can make customers more likely to pick your business whenever they need to make purchases. Wawa’s app lets you pick out items so you don’t have to wade through the store’s shelves. And then the location features and payment options make it so you don’t have to wait long once you get there. So whether you’re building an app or considering a new service or offering to your business, always consider the impact it might have on the buying process and ensure that the change is going to be a positive one.

Image: Wawa


Annie Pilon Annie Pilon is a Senior Staff Writer for Small Business Trends, covering entrepreneur profiles, interviews, feature stories, community news and in-depth, expert-based guides. When she’s not writing she can be found exploring all that her home state of Michigan has to offer.

2 Reactions
  1. Online ordering is now becoming quite common. Instead of having a separate app for your business, it is better to join those apps that have multiple restaurants in them.