Panera Bread can’t resist the siren’s call of offering food through third-party delivery apps. The restaurant chain has made its delivery service available outside of its own apps for the first time, offering its menu through DoorDash, GrubHub and Uber Eats. Don’t expect to see someone from those services at your door, though. Panera’s own couriers will fulfill orders in “most markets,” so you could still see familiar faces if you’re used to having your Toasted Frontega Chicken sandwiches delivered.
The company is in the process of linking its MyPanera loyalty program to orders placed through those outside apps, so don’t despair if you have loads of credit you’re eager to spend.
There’s not much mystery as to why Panera would make the leap after holding out for so long: that’s where the customers are going. It’s no secret that many restaurants now thrive on orders from delivery apps, and there’s a risk of being ignored altogether if you’re not an option. Panera is quick to tout that 7 percent of its sales come from deliveries, but there’s a chance its reach could grow if you can order your soup or salad from the apps you already use.