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1st Day of Curry Prep

In today’s blog post, I will explain the key learnings, that might help, when you are starting a cloud kitchen.

We have been working on this website since December, doing minor changes at a time, we didn’t plan a few things correctly, ex: The logo for the business, Menu Card, Payment integration, and Verifying checkout flow, I thought to tackle these after getting Permit, I presumed there will be a timeframe from the day of inspection to receiving permits (we didn’t know, as soon as the inspection is done, we can start). So if you are starting a cloud kitchen, maybe be prepared with everything before the inspection date, so as soon as Permits are received, you can open for business.

Since I had spent so much time pondering which day to start, I thought let’s just launch, learn fast & keep improving, so we announced the launch on Makar Sankranti Jan 15th, with the first meal Prep on Jan 18th(Today) pick up 12 pm, with ordering cut off on Jan 16th, 2 pm.

Immediately on Jan 16th, I noticed we had a problem with the checkout flow ( It was a minor issue(fixed on Jan 17th), but a bug in a production system costs a business dearly, the same thing happened to us, customers thought there might be a lot of orders, so we intentionally paused the sales), that’s the reason we created WhatsApp group, that way if there is any issue while ordering, they can directly reach us.

After realizing the issue(not getting the solution), I created a different order flow mechanism to enable customers to place pre-orders, we got 2 pre-orders (1 real, 1 test :)).

The real order was from our previous neighbors & very close family friends, since that was the only order, I suggested we shall confirm the order the next day ( Jan 17th), and they were cool with that. I also reached out to the other person via text who had pre-ordered, whether we could confirm the order, we haven’t heard from them after multiple attempts, maybe they were checking the order flow (we appreciate their time checking it ).

On Jan 17th at 6 am, I root caused the problem & fixed the order flow, and decided even if it’s just 1 order, let’s do it, our friends have trusted & supported our new venture, If we had informed them we would lose 2x amount to service this order, they would have agreed to cancel it. But we didn’t want to go with excuses.

On Jan 18th we went to the Cloud Kitchen at 10:05 and started with simple pooja, followed by the Ennagai preparation, by 12 pm we prepared our very first order from the Cloud Kitchen.

While preparing, our cloud kitchen owner stopped by and asked how many orders we got & how we got it. After we mentioned we got 1 from our friends, he said “That’s a good start, you will not make much money in the first ~3-4 months, with all the expenses associated”

Our friends, after learning it was the only order we serviced today, were extremely surprised, a journey of 1000 miles starts with a single step, the sooner we take the first step, the better, we didn’t want to postpone that first step & we are happy to have the support of this couple 🙏

Day 1 Income $21 & 88 cents.

Our friends were wondering why we didn’t use Food Aggregator platforms.

Most Food aggregators charge between 15% to 30% from business owners, and a minimum of ~5$ from the consumers. The food gets costly for the consumers & businesses make way less, but it brings a lot of convenience to consumers.

That’s the reason, we have enabled 2 order flows, one through the website, 2nd through a simple app, on both order flows, customers can place orders without creating an account, on the web if you are on a mobile device, you can pay with Google pay or Apple pay, alternatively, Cash on Pick up option is also available.

Please let us know if you prefer Free pickup from our cloud kitchen location or Delivery with a very small fee( cover gas) or should sign up for a Food Aggregator network. we want to provide great food & keep removing the friction as much as possible to provide great customer service.

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