Starting today, Facebook users can order food from thousands of restaurants via a variety of popular services from the app.
Facebook is already a go-to hub for interactions with family and friends, finding local businesses and occasionally asking your social network for recommendations. If those suggestions you're soliciting happen to be restaurants, as of today Facebook has made it even easier to follow through but allowing users to order food for delivery and pickup directly through the app and web interface, making good on a rumored feature tested earlier this year.
The ordering function can be accessed via three different approaches, either by selecting "Order Food" from the Explore menu, going to a restaurant's existing Facebook page and clicking "start order," or by searching for a restaurant and selecting the "start order" button in the search results. A pop-up menu will then give the option to order from any of the available services for that restaurant. Users can also search via location, cuisine type, and other filtering factors we've become familiar with on other delivery apps, as well as see what friends thought of specific restaurants.
One less-sleek function is that, due to the incorporation of many delivery providers, you still need an account set up with each one, however you can set up new accounts with outside vendors without leaving the Facebook app. Another slightly clunkier aspect is that each delivery service has its own payment system, some of which are integrated into Facebook's wallet function (meaning you can pay with the information linked to your account), but others are not as seamless. Speaking of "Seamless," that delivery provider, also known partnered with GrubHub, is the largest online food ordering service on the web, but not currently touted as a full partner, though the conversation we had with Facebook's representatives seemed to indicate it's something they'd want to pursue.
The full list of supported services and restaurants includes Delivery.com, DoorDash, ChowNow, Zuppler, EatStreet, Slice, and Olo, as well as directly from restaurants including Jack in the Box, Papa John's, Wingstop, Panera, TGI Friday's, Denny's, El Pollo Loco, Chipotle, Five Guys and Jimmy John's.