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Online food ordering is the process of ordering food through the restaurant's own website or mobile app, or through a multi-restaurant's website or app. A customer can choose to have the food delivered or for pick-up. The process consists of a customer choosing the restaurant of their choice, scanning the menu items, choosing an item, and finally choosing for pick-up or delivery. Payment is then administered by paying with a credit card or debit card through the app or website or in cash at the restaurant when going to pickup. The website and app inform the customer of the food quality, duration of food preparation, and when the food is ready for pick-up or the amount of time it will take for delivery.

The online food ordering market increased in the U.S with 40 percent of U.S adults having ordered their food online once. The online food ordering market includes foods prepared by restaurants, prepared by independent people, and groceries being ordered online and then picked up or delivered    
  The first online food order was a pizza from Pizza Hut in 1994.

This is a picture from a 2018 Pizza Hut pizza box, which describes the first online food sale.
The first online food ordering service, World Wide Waiter (now known as, was founded in 1995. The site originally serviced only northern California, later expanding to several additional cities in the United States.

GrubHub was founded in 2004.

By the late 2000s, major pizza chains had created their own mobile applications and started doing 20-30 percent of their business online. With increased smartphone penetration, and the growth of both Uber and the sharing economy, food delivery startups started to receive more attention. In 2010, Snapfinger, who is a multi-restaurant ordering website, had a growth in their mobile food orders by 17 percent in one year.

In 2015, China's online food ordering and delivery market grew from 0.15 billion Yuan to 44.25 billion Yuan.

As of September 2016, online delivery accounted for about 3 percent of the 61 billion U.S. restaurant transactions.

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