On-campus delivery now available for campus dining
It started with two students seeking to increase Blackstone Café’s sales. | Caitlin Gaines / THE CHIMES
In an effort to increase mid-semester sales, Bon Appétit introduced a delivery system on campus for Blackstone Cafe, Eagles’ Nest and the Caf Pizzeria on Jan. 17.
By students for students
Tapingo has provided students with the convenience of picking up food quickly. However, the app’s technological capabilities to carry out deliveries have allowed for students to avoid the extra effort. The service remains open Sunday to Thursday, 8 p.m. to 11 p.m., with a $5 minimum purchase. Deliveries to dorm lobbies remain free, while deliveries to anywhere else on campus cost an extra $2.
General manager for Bon Appétit Steve Rall believes that the service will prove successful once it gains more attention with advertising. He believes students will make use of the service because of its convenience, especially for those living in dorms farther away from the food services.
Senior psychology major Stephanie Campos and senior accounting major Leslie Chan, employees of Blackstone Cafe, came up with the idea for the project last semester. With its location on the far end of campus, Blackstone Cafe’s sales have suffered since it opened in 2015.
“So that is pretty much our vision,” Campos said. “Target lower campus, where they can actually taste our food and not have to walk all the way.”
Campos and Chan noticed purchase trends peaked at the beginning of the semester, when students have an influx of flex points, and at the end of the semester, particularly during the weeks coming up to final exams. They implemented the delivery system with the goal of raising sales in the middle of the semester, and eventually increasing employee hours as an effect.
“We’ve been noticing that our ticket sales price, so basically how much people order, has gone up more than we expected,” Chan said.
Plans for expansion
Although both Campos and Chan decided not to heavily advertise the service yet, they have future plans to develop and expand the service through word of mouth. They plan to use social media and speak in various classes to create buzz among students.
“In order for a business to really shoot off, you have to not only be efficient in it, but also market it really well,” Chan said.
They hope that marketing will have a significant impact on their sales, particularly since most students currently remain unaware of the delivery system. Sophomore cinema and media arts major Justyn Tenandar felt surprised to hear about this.
“Wait,” Tenandar said. “There’s delivery on campus?”
Campos and Chan also have plans on expanding the delivery system to other retails around campus to provide students with a greater variety of options. Although The Talon most likely will not be included in the delivery system due to its menu’s similarity to Blackstone Cafe’s, Campos and Chan have ideas to implement Heritage Cafe’s acai bowls and juices for deliveries.
“Once this gets going and it starts to progress, [Steve Rall] wants to incorporate Heritage in the mix,” Campos said.
Campos and Chan also hope students will give them grace as they attempt to tackle oncoming difficulties of the new delivery system.
“We’re still brand new,” Chan said. “Treat it like a new app.”