Meet & Greet: Rafi Cohen, Co-Founder of Orders2me, Online Ordering for Restaurants

Firmology’s Meet & Greet series takes an inside look at the technology and resources available to small business owners and entrepreneurs, straight from the founders who built them.
Title: Co-Founder
Company Name: Orders2me
Company One Liner: No-Fee Online Ordering System for Restaurants
Location: Brooklyn, NY

Tell us about yourself and your background:

I graduated Baruch College with a BA in Business Administration and a focus on Operations Management. I’ve been working with restaurants owners for almost two years now and have developed a deep understanding of the restaurant owner and their customers.
Prior to starting Orders2me and during my time at Baruch College, I founded a wholesale company where I imported and sold consumer electronics to various business.

What does your company do and what problem does it solve for businesses?

orders2me-logoOrders2me provides restaurants with a complete online ordering solution. Currently, when a restaurant owner wants to take online orders many lean towards working with third party portals, like Seamless, Grubhub, Eat24, etc. These portals charge restaurants anywhere from 10-18% commission per order, pay out to the restaurants only once every 2-4 weeks, and they don’t necessarily have an interest in bringing customers back to the restaurant they ordered from, but rather just back to the portal.

 

Pre-Orders2me, only the big chains were able to afford to build custom online ordering systems to add to their websites. Orders2me offers businesses a one-size-fits-all solution. Our solution is plug-n-play; restaurants just add our button to their website and they can start taking orders immediately.

orders2me-screenshot-laptop
Additionally, we integrate directly with the restaurant payment system so they can get paid directly for all orders. Orders2me just charges a flat monthly flee. We also have built-in marketing tools, like email marketing and coupons, which are designed to help bring the restaurants customers back to their restaurant, and a built-in feedback tool which automates the feedback process and provides restaurant operators with valuable insights into their operations.

orders2me-sushi-screenshot

How did you come up with the idea for your company?

orders2me-cofoundersWell, this is a funny story actually. There is a local sushi store where my co-founder and I always order from. They make some amazing sushi and are fairly popular in the neighborhood. During dinner time, their phone lines are jammed. When you do get ahold of the staff, its so busy in there you can barely make your order or hear the the person. 

So, being frequent customers, we got into some dialogue with the owner and, being the techies we are, told him he needed to get an online ordering portal so we could place our orders. He told us that he was briefly on Seamless but left because the high order commissions and the delay in payment were affecting his bottom line margins.

 

That’s when our idea hit us. Fast forward two years and, after much market research and interviews with restaurant owners, Orders2me was born.

What makes your company different from your competitors?

To start, we dont charge any “per-order” fees. We also give the restaurant owner full access to what we call the “Restaurant Manager Dashboard.” From there, they can make any changes to their menu, send out email blasts, view reporting, see who their best customers are, and more.

 

 

But what I’d say really sets us apart, is that, with Orders2me, restaurants don’t have to worry about buying any new equipment, like tablets or computers, and Orders2me can integrate directly into seven major POS systems (Aldelo, Focus, MICROS 3700, POSitouch, POSlavu, Revel, and SpeedLine), so any incoming online order would be entered into the restaurant’s POS as if an employee manually entered it.

orders2me-screenshot

What are the most important considerations businesses should have when choosing technology to help them power their business?

It’s important to work with companies who understand what their needs and goals are. The reason I say this is because as many new tech products come out, most are self-serve solutions. But Orders2me understands the persona of our target customer and the restaurant owner. These are hard working small business owners with very busy schedules and many of whom may need added support.

It’s very important for a business to look at what kind of support they will be getting for the technology. At Orders2me, we offer all native English-speaking support reps and never have, nor will, outsource support.

What other companies or entrepreneurs within the technology space do you admire and think businesses should know about?

There are many entrepreneurs who inspire me. Chase Adam, founder at Watsi, who was the first Y Combinator backed non-profit gave a great speech at Startup School abut social entrepreneurship and doing what you love. Neil Patel‘s QuickSprout blog is also a must-read for anyone in marketing or SEO.

Anything else Firmology readers and business owners should know? News? Upcoming features? Special deals?

We’re always working on new updates to make our platform even more intuitive and easier to use. Some new things we plan to unveil in 2015 are loyalty features, so customers can get rewarded for ordering at a restaurant and help restaurant owners bring the customers back for even more. We also plan to roll out a low-cost mobile apps offering so restaurants can get their own custom branded mobile apps so they can complete with the big chains.
orders2me-screenshot-mobile

Firmology Readers: Let’s hear your thoughts!

1) Have a question or comment about Orders2me? Drop Rafi a note in the comments below.

2) Who would you like to see on Firmology’s Meet & Greet series? Are there other questions we should be asking? Are any of the questions above unclear or could be asked in a better way? Let us know in the comments below or email us at contact@firmology.com

 If you’re the founder of a tech company focused on helping businesses and would like to be featured on Firmology’s Meet & Greet series, email us at contact@firmology.com.

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About The Author

Rafi Cohen is the Co-Founder of Orders2me, a cloud based ordering system for restaurants to take orders via their existing websites, payment system & Facebook pages. He has a passion for all things tech, entrepreneurship & food. Rafi graduated from Baruch College with a BA in Business Administration with a focus on Operations Management.