Restaurants, Aggregators Fight For Customers

In the early months of quarantine, the relationships between restaurants and third-party aggregators shifted quickly from symbiotic to parasitic, with the economics quickly proving unsustainable for restaurants as digital order volume skyrocketed. Rather than providing an extra revenue stream, delivery orders became part-and-parcel of the business, and the challenges posed by aggregators, which charge restaurants steep fees and keep from them valuable data about their customers, became pressing. 

Now, as it becomes clear that the rise of digital ordering is here to stay, restaurants are seeking to guide consumers to more profitable, sustainable ordering channels — their direct platforms. After all, when consumers order directly from the restaurant, the restaurant has the opportunity not only to avoid third-party fees but also to learn about its customers, leveraging data from rewards programs and other digital platforms to build loyalty and drive conversion.  

“I think digital trends in the fast-casual space

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What’s new in Ponte Veda, Nocatee, more

In 2021, Jacksonville’s restaurant scene continues to grow, with new restaurants opening or planning to open in the coming months. Here’s a look at what’s opening or coming soon to busy St. Johns County.

Canopy Road Café

Canopy Road Café opened its new restaurant in January at 90 The Shops Blvd. at the Shoppes of St. Johns Parkway near the northwest corner of County Road 210 and St. Johns Parkway. (Pictured is the restaurant at 12525 Philips Highway in the Shoppes at Bayard, which opened in 2019.)

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Ember & Iron

Jacksonville Chef Mike Cooney and his wife, Brittany, opened their much-anticipated restaurant Ember & Iron on Feb. 22 at the Shoppes of St. Johns Parkway at 60 Shops Blvd. in St. Johns. Cooney relies on the custom wood-fired grill to prepare ember-roasted entrees and side dishes. Ember & Iron is the first live fire, hearth restaurant in Northeast Florida. |

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