Waiting for your order is a maelstrom of anticipation, and anxiety. You yearn for your food and groceries, fantasising their flavour, and freshness. But you also worry about the perils that imperil your rider. You map their journey on the map, like a guardian watching over a child. You marvel at them, tackling through challenges: zoom, brake, and swerve. You also empower them, like a coach giving pep talk. Your fingers shiver on the screen, as if you could assist them along the way. Your eyes scorch on the screen, as if you could pierce through it to your rider.
As your eyes dance across the screen, a novel feature on the waiting page will now demand your attention. A tantalising, or perhaps irksome, advertisement pops up right below your order status. If you haven’t indulged in the app for some time, you might be scratching your head. These advertisements are fresh off the press, having been incorporated into the app just last year. Foodpanda calls them ‘Panda Ads,’ and let me tell you, this could be the most effortless money Foodpanda has ever made. They just need to seduce you into acting on that urge to tap the screen — just not your rider, but a few centimetres below him.
It’s such a no-brainer way to generate revenue that one can’t help but wonder if Foodpanda will eventually become complacent and settle for crumbs. So what is Profit on about this week? Let’s start with how Foodpanda actually makes money.