Cracking Invite & Earn

A determining factor for any successful business proposition is their ability to find effective ways to acquire new customers at a low cost. One such highly efficient strategy that every business hopes to crack is the referral program. We, at Faasos, have tried to fine tune this program over the last few quarters and to perfect it as best as possible to suit our requirement. Here’s the story:

Basic Formula:

Every business aims to have their customers become evangelists and invite their friends and family, who in-turn invite their friends to use the product/services, thus driving customer acquisition. Some of these will further turn evangelists and drive more users for the business.

This model includes 3 components:

  • Initial set of customers
  • The evangelists who will “invite” more people – New customer invited – say I
  • Referred people who “convert” to new users for the business – Conversions – say C

The basic principle that any Invite & Earn (I&E) program follows is increase the numberof ‘Invites’ and improve ‘Conversions’ from these invites.

 Phase I: The Basic Program:

Our first attempt at I&E program was with a semi closed wallet, which required our existing user to refer a friend to use our services. As per the I&E program, the existing user gets Rs. X when the friend transacts for the first time and the friend receives Rs. X off on their first order.

The Glitch: Since this was with a semi-closed wallet, the referred customer was required to add more money to the wallet to undertake any transaction as X was always less than what a usual transaction would be. It wasn’t a surprise that the conversions languished at ca. 20% at that time.

Phase II: The Upgraded Program:

In the second Phase, we introduced an upgraded version of the program. This version was created in manner that the rewards were directly impacting the invoice. E.g. Rs. X was directly deducted from the invoice value thus eliminating the entire ordeal of adding money to the wallet and improving customer convenience. This version definitely worked better and led to an increase of 2.5X in conversions in only a month.

The Glitch:

  • Week 1 retention – As the new users started scaling up, the first thing to do was to check the quality of the new users pouring in. The idea was to understand if they were genuine users of just some friend whose mobile was used to avail the discount / split the bill etc. The best way to determine this was to track the number of new users that were transacting again in a period of 7 days and compare it to other sources of customer acquisition such as Facebook, Google etc. (Week 1 retention). As soon as we scaled up the new users with the “frictionless” rewards program, the Week 1 retention dropped considerable indicating that the quality of new users was poor / we were unable to attract genuine ‘new users’. We needed a way to keep the rewards friction free and prevent misuse of the program to just get a discount.
  • Average Order Value – Another key feature to determine the long term success of an I&E program is the Average Order Value (AOV). Average Order Value (AOV) = Revenue / Total number of orders. Once again, this had to be similar / more than the AOV from other sources of customer acquisition (Facebook, Google etc.). It did not come as a surprise to us that the AOV for individual customer under the ‘frictionless’ program was also lower as compared to the AOV from other sources of customer acquisition.

Phase III: The Current Program:

We realized that making the process frictionless does give a disproportionate incentive to “Game” the system and order at a discount. We understood the need to pull some of it back while keeping the process clean enough to not dissuade genuine users. A few tweaks to the minimum order amounts or disallowing usage of coupons with the rewards helped us separate out the genuine users in the end.

As we can see from the Chart II below, the Week 1 retention and the AOV also increased leading to a closure of loop on the perennial question that every business will have – Do Referral Users sustain the business for a long term?

Chart I – The three versions

I&E new (1)

Chart II – The current program

I&E 2

Snapshot of the mediums used for Invite & Earn:

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Steady State Growth:

The current program is successfully driving good customers (Week 1 retention continues to improve along with the AOVs) and the idea was to drive higher number of new users from the same. The starting point was hence to look at the funnel and figure out where we can optimise.

Quick check on the funnel

# who visit the Invite & Earn section: 100

# who invite: 35

# of invites sent per user: 2.5  ; Hence actual invites sent: ca. 88

# who register and subsequently transact as a new user: 62

Essentially we have figured out the Invite Ratio I; ca. 88% and Conversion ration C: 62% giving us a healthy Viral Coefficient Ratio of 0.55. The best programs would have a Ratio of close to 1 (essentially every user for the business getting another user; a dream come true for every marketer J). The focus in the coming months is to scale the 0.55 as high as possible while keeping the constraints of AOV and Week 1 Retention high. Any and all of the funnel components of how many consumers visit the I&E section on the App, to driving more invites from those to maybe influencing their decision to invite more people to finally improving conversions through friendly reminders are the cards in our hand.  Watch this space to see if we can scale I&E in the coming quarters as well.

Revant Bhate,

Chief Marketing Officer

Bringing the beauty of offline experiences online: A Faasos take

Jaideep CEO

Although many of our customers across India who are using Faasos as an answer to #AajKhaneMeinKyaHai, might think we are primarily a mobile app, I must say a few old world / brick-and-mortar type of stuff runs very strongly in our veins – may be a bit too strongly, given our roots. That includes managing a network of kitchens across the country, supply chain, inventory management, new product development ( not the app, but actual food ) etc. But, the thing that defines our offline root most strongly, is how our customer experience vision is formed and is being executed upon. Over time we have tried to either keep the beautiful aspects of an offline experience or improved upon them using the power of technology. Of course, some of these worked and others did not, but that’s life. Here is a synopsis of what we have done so far. The list is no way comprehensive and will remain work in progress for ever, as there is really no end to improving customer experience:

The Best Bits of Offline How we are trying to keep it and make it better
Offline is very personal. A waiter or an order taker on the phone recognizes you if you are a regular customer. Gives you a nod. The chef says hello while passing by. And yes, if you are not carrying cash would pass on a bit of credit every now and then. Our Elite program is an endeavour to bring back the charm of old world loyalty. If you are regular enough to be an Elite customer, the app recognizes you, gives you a surprise dish on the house once in a while, always asks you if you would like to pay later, sends you the new dishes that are about to come up for tasting. These are a few of the ever expanding benefits given to the Elite.
How many times you went to a restaurant and asked for recommended dishes. Well, I do it 100% of the time. And the results are usually pleasant Our Faasos Finest range is a step towards that. We have put together a collection of dishes, that are best rated and most loved by our customers – not by our chef, nor by our marketing team, but by our customers. That’s where I feel we upped it one level from offline, where it is usually a gut feeling. In our case, this is data driven and automatically pulled up basis ratings and order volume. We are now taking it to the next level, where our recommendations will be personalized, based on what you like, what you ordered and how you rated what you ordered, whether you are missing out on something that everyone else loved so on and so forth. Think of Netflix of Food reco.
Offline gives you pleasant surprises. At the end of the dinner, how many times have you been overwhelmed by the little gesture of the restaurant to give you a complimentary dessert? Has not happened with me many times unfortunately, but I do remember a few occasions. And I have never forgotten those restaurants Every now and then, and for every new customer of ours, we add a complimentary “welcome kit” – consisting of a dessert and a few other tit-bits. We absolutely love the smile our delivery boys get from a pleasantly surprised customer. I can tell you, there is no bigger motivation in business than when your customer smiles at you. Our boys love it ( may be even more than the customers :))
The trouble with offline How we are trying to make it less troublesome
Waiting for your food order is probably the most harrowing experiences mankind goes through ( with the exception of speaking in public probably ). It is usually filled with several phone calls asking how far, how much more time etc., super fast escalation of hunger and as a result anger, getting all sorts of cliches back from the person on the phone including “ ladka nikal gaya hai (the delivery boy on its way)”, “kab place kiya order ( when did you place the order?)”, “do minute me call karta hun (will call you back in two minutes)”, so on and so forth. You get the gist. All of us suffered irrevocably waiting for our food from the local restaurant. To counter this, we built, probably an industry first, “Estimated Time of Delivery”.

  1. When you order on Faasos, at the end of the order, the app estimates the delivery time based on the distance between you and the kitchen, traffic situation, current load at the kitchen and prep time of your order.
  1. Before you press your final “place order” button, you will actually see this “estimated time” and can decide whether you want to proceed with the order or not.
  1. If you decide to go ahead and order, an order tracking appears on your screen and you can see a clock ticking away towards your estimated time. Which means, even if you are not watching the time, intermittently you can check the tracker and see how much time is left before the “Estimated Time” for delivery is lapsed.
  1. Right at the stroke of the “Estimated Time”, you get a message asking “ Have you got your order?” 97% of the cases today, we get an affirmative answer, which means for about 3% of the cases we were wrong about the Estimated Time, or something catastrophic may have happened and we got late. If the customer says “no” in answer to that question, a notification immediately goes to our Customer Service Center, who gets on the job of finding out what happened to the order.

If you are not already bored, do check out my post on “Estimated Delivery Time”

Customizing your order over the phone is always a game of chinese whisper. You ask for extra cheese and the order comes with lots of onions and no cheese. It has happened with every one of us. We built in customizations with all our Meals, Rice and Wraps. On our app, you can always change the base of your wrap to whole wheat, chose your carb in your meals ( rice, roti or both), add extra toppings or that dash of cheese. It all gets added to your order and shows up on the kitchen screen, so there is no chinese whisper or missing extras because someone did not listen to your properly

As I said before, this is just the start of the journey for us, and we are excited to keep introducing great offline experiences or improve upon them on our app. We are working on several features from splitting bills among your friends to one click device to order your food by pressing a button. Would love to hear from you if you have any ideas around how experiences could be beautiful when someone is ordering online.

8 Irresistible Biryanis that you absolutely must know about

Biryani. From busy “order in” weeknights to lavish Sunday meals that’s prepared with meticulousness- Biryani has carved a spot in Indian palate like no other. Often than not, we find ourselves turning to Biryani- yes, on countless occasions and mood so it should come as no surprise that India offers 17 major variations of Biryani!

In this post, we will look into 8 best biryanis in India and their differentiating factors or ingredients:

Hyderabadi Dum Biryani – Hyderabad


One of the most popular, Hyderabadi Biryani stands out with its usage of saffron and coconut. While other biryanis showcase a dominance of marinated mutton, Hyderabadi biryani aces it with its layers of saffron rice. The biryani is slow cooked in layers and is served with brinjal or eggplant gravy.  

Sindhi Biryani – Sindh


A type that originated in Sindh province- which is now in Pakistan- Sindhi Biryani is noted for its generous use of spice and curd. Kewra or mithaittr is a dominant factor that sets this biryani apart. Some also use potatoes and prunes in it.

Dindigul Ginger Biryani- Tamil Nadu


On our way to kodaikanal we stopped at a place for lunch and settled for something called Dindigul Biryani. We had no clue what it was but we trusted biryani so we called for it. To our surprise, it’s very unlike biryani and more like a good fried chicken rice with cube size meat pieces and a whole lot of pepper. What stands out is the jeera samba rice that this biryani uses as opposed to Basmati, which gives it an entirely new flavour.  

Malabar Biryani – Kerala


Famous in Kozhikode, Thalassery and Malappuram, this Biryani is characterized by the unique variety of rice called khyma rice, and uses cashew nuts and raisins. The key difference though is in the method of preparation: the mutton gravy and the rice are cooked separately and are mixed well at the time of serving.

Lucknowi Biryani – Lucknow


Now this is what a real Biryani would look like. Unadulterated Persian cooking made with the use of a completely different method called dumpakht. Keeping with the norms, the meat and gravy are partially cooked and then layered to cook fully. The vessel is sealed and is left to cook in its own steam.

Kolkata Biryani – Kolkata


Now, this biryani has its roots in the Nawabi style of Lucknow Biryani. It is said that the chefs from the Awadhi kitchens brought the signature recipe to kolkata which later suffered a small tweak. You’ll find boiled potatoes and boiled egg along with mutton or chicken in this Biryani in Kolkata. Noted spices like nutmeg, saffron and kewra give this Biryani its signature taste and flavor.

Bhatkali Biryani- Coastal Karnataka


Now who would’ve thunk! Low on spice, with just the right amount of flavor Bhatkali Biryani originated from the Nawayath Muslim community in Bhatkal. This biryani is noted for its use of onions and green chilli. Additionally, in Bhatkali Biryani the meat pieces are first cooked in curd to balance the flavors out.

Faasos Biryani:

executive chicken biryani

Fragrant and low on spices, our biryani follows the Dum  Pakht method of the Awadhi style. Long grain, basmati rice is cooked in large handis with layered meat and is put to “Dum” with a generous sprinkling of fried onions. We serve it with raita and crunchy, fresh onions. What really makes it stand is its availability pan India and its quality to walk up from the kitchen and come right to your table without you having to move a bit!

By the way did you know the word Biryani actually derived from Persian language which was the official language of medieval India? Researchers believe that Biryani is derived from the word “Biryan” which means to fry or roast or from “Birinj” which is the Persian word for rice.

Food for thought!


Consistent Excellence is what it takes to be included in our “Finest”

The food world is a different world altogether! Believe it or not, it thrives on consistent excellence or doesn’t thrive at all. The thin line that differentiates a food joint that’s going to make it and one which is not going to, rests on how consistently can a brand recreate one of its specialties. And, you might like to know that it takes years to build trust and reputation which will later go on to make a restaurant not just a place to eat but a culinary legend. Faasos Finest are those products that have survived the test of time; survived the ever evolving taste buds of the most demanding customers, and having consistently done so has earned a reputation that lives up to the word “Finest”

We’re happy to open doors to one of the most awaited & curated list of the year on our app: Faasos Finest. A dish may come and go but these dishes will stay forever! Here is a snapshot of the yummiez that made it to the list. Go through it after which we will tell you what cuts it to being “Finest” so you know when you order from “Faasos Finest” list you are being pampered with nothing but the best!

In pursuit of Finest

So what makes finest, finest? Well, to start off with “repeated ratings”. When order’s done, our app prods our customer to rate a product so we know what’s working and what’s not- and it helps us in forming a better understanding of the food we are serving. “Finest” are those products who receive a 5 on a scale of 5, continuously and over months & years. If you work in a food tech sector, you’d know how challenging it is for a dish to demand a full 5 every time. Go a line on the other side of that perfect balance and the scenario quickly gets to being unforgiving. Thanks to our chef and line boys who toil endlessly to come up with that perfect balance all the time, which goes onto get a 5. This being judging parameter 1!

Our second judging point is the number of orders. Some of our classics form a major chunk of our daily orders- and consistently at that. These food rockstars are jotted down for further evaluation

Our third and most important point to consider is customer satisfaction. Repeated orders prove that our customers not only like the taste but are also somehow loyal to a particular product. We bring in these products that have garnered much trust and tally it with the number of ratings and the number of times it has been mentioned on media platforms {yeah, geocodes} to evaluate the best amongst best.

Clearly, every bite feels like a privilege.

The Ace List

By far, we’ve included 20 products that have stood the taste test, consistently! Hover around on each image (above) to see what it is so you can order in when you want to serve good food, blindly! We assure you, there has never been and will never be a compromise on taste.

Take a break from breakfast

You thought “oh, it’s just breakfast” but let us tell you there are multiple factors that decide what breakfast is going to be put today, on that table, in front of those severely critical people who wouldn’t think twice to put that plate down and settle for something unhealthy outside. You wouldn’t know but it’s a constant struggle to win this breakfast war.

At any point of time, in any given condition, these do the brownian dance in the cook’s head:

  1. Mondays are bad days and the breakfast better be interesting
  2. The breads getting stale, they are going to go bad…must use them up, but how?
  3. They want egg and bread but not the same everyday. Then what?
  4. Too oily is a no no, bland is a no no, veggies are no no
  5. Should make something healthy, but they won’t touch it
  6. Milk is important, but we know it’s not going to go down the throat.
  7. God, I wish I could stop thinking and sleep in- just for today

We at Faasos, empathize with Calendars because we’ve been Calendars all our life. With every sizzle of that perfectly fried egg, went away just a tiny bit of our sleep, life and freedom in general. The voices in our head wouldn’t stop talking and the voices near us wouldn’t stop complaining either.

Enter Faasos Breakfast- a delicious antidote to that scary condition called WTCBS or “What to cook for breakfast syndrome”

Plump, broiled chicken sausages, fresh egg omelettes, soft bread rolls which we very fondly call “pav”, piping hot aloo paratha, juicy chicken meatballs, fresh cold kesar muselli, steamed Idli & gunpowder chutney- Oh, we’ve made sure that we have it all. To save you time and let you relish your mornings, we’ve carefully made whole hearted healthy combos that fulfills the school goer or the office goers daily nutrition (a side of protein + a dose of carb and a fill of fiber) while masking it all in a garb of deliciousness.

Then again, we did not want to restrict you with our combos only. In the Faasos App, you can now make your own combo- just pick and choose from our breakfast menu what you’d like to order for and there you are! One of the main reasons why we kept the combo option open is it lets you do the permutation combination and present all new breakfasts every morning. Oh, you need to trick those tricky tastebuds once in awhile: you’d know!
So save yourself from a gastronomic schizophrenia and arm yourself with our app instead. First look is here. Alternatively you can visit our website and order in too! Trust us, you’ll thank us later.



How India watches cricket?

Taking inspiration from Faasos’ belief – being everybody’s personal kitchen (building over Aaj Khane Mein Kya Hai?); we crafted a highly responsive campaign during World T20 – #FaasosCheer. Cricket is considered a religion in India and with #FaasosCheer we created a digital eco-system which enabled consumers to live their religion. Consumers can vouch for the team they were supporting during World T20 while indulging in their favorite food through Faasos. Consenting users had to order on the day of the match using the coupon code of the team they support and win Cashbacks.

The campaign was run for 14 days on all social platforms

Here are some quick findings that we can across during the campaign.

Who people cheered for? 






Support we received



Leader board



Extending the campaign beyond:

Since the striking campaign has witnessed tremendous buzz over such a short period of time – both on social & business growth-wise, we plan to extend it to the next cricket season also.

For more details visit:


An EMAIL from the Co-Founder

Jaideep CEO

Faasos App, Deconstructed

First of all, thank you very much for opening this email and starting to read. Well, let’s face it. An email from the CEO of Faasos is not the same thing as one from, let’s say, the Nobel committee, your secret admirer, or your childhood hero. So, thanks, really!!

I wanted to reach out to you to share an exciting development on the Faasos App. From today, you will see three tabs / services when you open the app:

FT Header (1)

Classic Faasos: This is where you will get the ever expanding range of best selling Faasos products – from wraps, to biryanis, to rice feasts, great Indian meals, all day breakfasts, Chai and snacks, desserts and many more.

Local Favourites: To give you even more variety with quality, here we have curated best dishes from local restaurants, chefs, caterers, delivered to you with typical Faasos delivery efficiency. If a dish is on Faasos, it will be good. And it will come quickly, as Faasos will deliver it.

Made to order:  Whenever you are throwing a party – at home, in office – to celebrate or forget something, you tap on the “made to order” button on our app and put your requirements. We will take care of everything and organize the food.

Why are we introducing these services? Good question! Because, we are constantly trying to create offerings that will give you, our customers, freedom from your kitchen. We want to make you relaxed about breakfast, lunch, snacks, dinner, salads, desserts, throwing a party, eating alone, maid not turning up, mom away, kids hungry, in-laws invading etc etc. – by giving you an answer to that quintessential question “AAJ KHANE ME KYA HAI” ( what’s for food ), whatever be the situation.

Do try these services out. I will love to hear what you think of them.  It will help us get better at freeing you from your kitchen.

P.s. Thank you very much for reading the whole thing. No one ever read anything I wrote since those mind numbing essays in school. So, thanks, really!!

– Jaydeep Barman, Co-Founder & CEO, Faasos

Who are you #FaasosCheer ing for today?

Cricket has developed from a game being played by English nobles & aristocrats to the one that is widely watched and played by millions in India. Infact one can rightfully call Cricket a religion in India.

With World T20, the cricket fervor has hit the fans again and what better than the team you are vouching for pays for your favorite treats.

Faasos introduces #FaasosCheer, a digital eco-system where a consumer gets to vouch for their favorite team and keep the excitement alive & kicking. Whatever be the reason, you will always get a free treat to take home.

Watch this video and #FaasosCheer with all your heart to be rewarded extensively.

What’s your cheer


Faasos Elite – The new age Loyalty Program

Do you ogle every time you see a Faasos signage? Do you think about flicking a teekha chaska every time your friend / colleague order a Faasos meal? Does swig give you wings to fly with happiness? Then it is safe to say your loyalty has been proved and it is time we prove ours.

Faasos is always innovating and the latest development is launch of Faasos Elite, an exceptional loyalty program with some drool-worthy privileges.

Faasos Elite is designed to extend indulgences to customers who have stayed with Faasos over the years and experienced the brand flourish. Or In the typical Faasos lingo: It is just a small gesture to say thank you and giving back the immense happiness that you as a consumer have given over the years!

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Meet the Elites

Buy Now, Pay Later

For those wary of making a payment after every transaction and want to get rid of the mundane task and focus more on the food, Buy now pay later is an addiction. The entire process of entering card details – card number, cvv, expiry etcetera is so tedious; one is almost tempted to give up on the order. Opting for COD comes with its own set of wearisome requirements.

Enter, Faasos Elite. Each Elite customer enjoys distinctive privilege to pay later. Skip the dreaded process of making payment after every order by opting for lump sum payment at the end of every 15 days. Yes that’s 15 days of credit, really old school!

Prioritized Deliveries 

Another perk of being a part of the Elite Squad is that you get the world on the platter, no fuss or questions. The order placed by an Elite is given highest priority which includes getting priority on delivery before all the existing queued-up deliveries.

Being a part of Faasos Elite is thus a way to ensure receiving your food in a blink of an eye.

New products sneak Peek

What’s more, Faasos Elite also gives a chance (to all Elites) to bite into products which are in beta phase and share your feedback on whether the product has earned the right to be on the Faasos menu. Faasos stellar team works around the clock to ensure the menu is consumer friendly and reflects exactly what you want to see. So sit back and revel in the stardom.

Feels exclusive already? There is more…

Complaint Resolution

We at Faasos have a clear vision on the need to synchronize our thought process with that of our customers and the same is reflected at all service points. We are committed to delivering 7 star consumer experience and are known for setting an exemplary track record in addressing consumer grievances. Faasos team works tirelessly to create unforgettable memories for consumers to keep them coming back.

Multiply that by 5 and that’s what you get if you are a Faasos Elite.

Special Surprises

All this comes with a dash of smaller surprises. As a part of the Elite Squad, be assured you will recieve a little something here and there (read: Birthdays, Anniversaries etc.) to make your day remarkable.

We believe that Faasos has played transformational role in disrupting the food-tech market in the country, thanks to millions of customers who have helped shaping-up this remarkable journey. It is our responsibility now to continue contributing to this eco-system. Faasos Elite is a step in that direction. Faasos Elite is here to recognize and appreciate you as a consumer and are grateful to you for being a part of Faasos journey.

Well, if you are not Elite, it’s still not too late. We welcome everyone with arms wide open.