The battle in Indian food tech is nip and tuck, especially between Zomato and Swiggy. Though a late entrant into the delivery space, Zomato clocked three million orders last month. But it still falls short of Swiggy, which clocked four million orders back in July and leads the online ordering space.
But Zomato is making money in its core business across all of its markets. And it’s making enough to cover for the investments its making into its other businesses.
As the battle rages on, Zomato is dropping its latest weapon to get ahead of Swiggy: Zomato Gold
First reported by The Ken, Zomato confirmed to The News Minute that Zomato Gold is coming to India.
“Yes, Zomato Gold will be launched in India within the next 2 months. In India - the membership will initially be rolled out to users in Delhi, Mumbai and Bangalore, all around the same time,” a Zomato spokesperson said.
So what is Zomato Gold?
Zomato Gold is a subscription platform where members will get exclusive deal at restaurants, bars and pubs that Zomato has partnered with.
India is the third market that the foodtech company has rolled out Gold in, after UAE and Portugal.
There will be two kinds of subscriptions in India: Gold for dining out and Gold for Nightlife. Under the Gold for dining out subscription, Zomato gives members a complimentary dish (any) across the menu with every meal they order at a partner restaurant. Similarly, the nightlife subscription gets them up to two complimentary drink across the menu - both alcoholic and non-alcoholic.
Zomato says that Gold members can avail these perks across all Gold restaurants in India and on every visit.
With the lure of a free drink and complimentary dish, Zomato hopes to increase footfalls for its partner restaurants. The cost of the freebies is absorbed by the restaurants.
But why would a restaurant partner take the cost?
“Zomato Gold members are not bargain hunters, but folks who enjoy going out and exploring new places. Our members are offered not just complementary dishes / drinks, but are also given access to exclusive events at Gold partner restaurants. Thus we will allow our Gold restaurant partners the opportunity to get more people to try their place, and if the experience is great create loyal patrons of their own,” says Zomato.
Restaurants also enjoy additional visibility across the Zomato Platform with the Gold tag and Gold filter, increasing their exposure to all of Zomato’s unique consumers.
Loyalty key to subscription
India’s internet companies are vastly driven by discounts and competitive pricing, and consumers opt for platforms that have the best offers and least prices. As a result, customer loyalty is missing.
This was the strategy behind Amazon Prime. For the ecommerce major, 40% of orders in India now come from Prime customers. This is why, Zomato is bringing Gold to India.
While the exact subscription cost hasn’t been decided yet, a three-month membership in UAE costs AED 49 (approx. Rs 870) and 14 Euros in Portugal. In both countries combined, Zomato Gold has over 10,000 subscribers.
Ahead of its rollout, Zomato has already partnered with over 1500 premium restaurants across the three cities.