Category: Food Industry

Filipino Food Picks For You!

Filipino food is so diverse and filled with so much flavor, it will satisfy any of your cravings. May it be spicy, sweet or sour, there’s definitely a perfect Filipino delicacy for you. But if you’re not sure where to start your Pinoy food trip or If you’re looking for that specific taste of Filipino food, this list of ZAP merchants can certainly quench that hunger.

  • Iceberg’s

Got that sweet tooth? Iceberg’s got you. Famous for their delicious ice cream concoctions and hearty meals, Iceberg’s has been serving since 1986. One of their staple items on their menu is the Filipino dessert, Halo-Halo. Iceberg has been offering this delicious local dessert for 3 decades along with a list of traditional Filipino food. But if Halo-Halo isn’t for you, you can also check out Iceberg’s Specialty portion on their menu which is a list of other sweet and cold desserts they offer. Order Here!

  • Indulge by Daisy Marie

With the rainy season coming, what better way to warm you than a hot sweet serving of Champorado. Indulge by Daisy Marie offers different flavors of champorado like Ube and Strawberry Pannacotta Champorado, perfect if you’re feeling daring or just looking for a new taste on your Champorado.  Order Here!

  • Vito’s BBQ

Vito’s BBQ is the Pambansang BBQ! It has been a food staple in all occasions that started as a small family business that caters to the traditional food meals that we enjoy. Now they share our Vito BBQ with other Filipino families to enjoy and also be a part of both their big and small celebrations. Their mouthwatering menu can surely satisfy your palate. Order Here!

  • Empanada Nation

No need to visit the province of Ilocos to get a taste of their special empanada. Just head over to Empanada Nation’s online store and order their authentic Ilocano Empanada. Their empanadas are made upon ordering and are served fresh and hot straight from the pot. Take a tour on their menu and discover a variety of traditional and tasty Filipino food, perfect for an all day meal. Order Here!

  • Betty’s Best

We Filipinos love gatherings, since these occasions usually involve food. Betty’s Best has a variety of delicious party platters of our favorite traditional Filipino dishes your family and friends will surely enjoy. Their menu also offers other appetizing dishes such as the Filipino party favorite, shanghai. Betty’s Best is also home to the Best Sisig Sotanghon. Sotanghon noodles topped with their signature sisig, this unique dish will make your celebration more memorable.

Filipino food is definitely a must try as it has one of the richest food cultures in Southeast Asia. And these restaurants successfully showcase that. Not only are they full of flavors, but also carry a piece of the country’s culture and heritage. Most of their dishes even have influences from Eastern and Western countries such as Spain and China. If you like food from these places, you’re gonna love the Filipino style. So what are you waiting for? Just head over to their websites and check their online store and enjoy your Filipino food trip. Tara, kain! Order Here!

How to Prepare Your E-Store for Fathers Day

Photo by Marcus Herzberg

This year, we have seen our country open up, and life now is somehow similar to how it was pre-pandemic. Employees have returned to the office, we can physically meet up with friends, and social gatherings are now even allowed at restaurants and bars! Yes, it’s the return to normalcy many of us have been craving for. Some things, however, are forever changed – practices we’ve adopted over lockdowns that we can never truly un-learn – and most of it is related to embracing digital. 

So while we’re sure that we’ll be seeing a ton of dine-in promos and restaurants booked through the roof this upcoming Father’s Day, there’s bound to be a huge chunk of customers integrating their newfound digital transformation into their celebrations. Many will undoubtedly be pre-ordering dishes online regardless if they’ll be dining in or having food delivered. Some will be more lowkey and skip physical meet-ups altogether, sending gifts and food via apps. And, speaking of apps, there will also be those on the lookout for promo codes, prioritizing restos with the best discount deals.

The question now is: is your F&B business ready for a Father’s Day under this new hybrid reality?

Winning under the new hybrid reality

In a previous article, we highlighted how the rule of thumb for F&B businesses to win under our new circumstances is to create fulfilling experiences online and on-ground. Ideally, these experiences connect, forming an ecosystem. How do you bring loyal online customers to your store and vice-versa?

Given these learnings, such considerations should be applied when you’re gearing up for a celebration where there will be an influx of orders and reservations. Don’t sleep on an opportunity with lazy promos unable to capitalize on a special occasion or via operations ill-optimized to your’s and customers’ situations. Below are tips on how your E-store can prepare for Father’s Day 2022.

Think outside of the box in creating promos

We made it a point to emphasize how “lazy” promos are equivalent to sleeping on opportunities. So what do we mean by creative promos that take advantage of the situation? 

The key to creating a good promo is considering our change in online behavior and how it affects our consumption, whether in-store or at home.

So we’re not saying to stave off the standard discount offered during special occasions; instead, think of how you can build on this practice in a way that both customers will appreciate and differentiate your business.

For example, a service like Zap E-store allows you to easily see which customers keep coming back to you. So, using this service, why not create a unique in-store Father’s Day discount for customers that had deliveries this month of June?  Inversely, maybe a patron who dined in your store could avail of a “Father’s Month” promo code or other discounts exclusively for delivery. This way, the treats don’t just end after one visit. Plus, you also encourage them to explore your service across channels. (Extra points if they discover how good your customer service is in all of them).

Explore the beauty of bundles

Over the pandemic, many F&B businesses prepared take-home kits and frozen trays for their best-selling dishes, so patrons could experience these products from the comforts of their homes. Now, just because your business allows dine-in, it doesn’t mean these dishes have to be offered in-store. Many families will still celebrate from their homes this year regardless of their reasons. What’s important is that you are ready to accommodate them if they come your way.

Come up with Father’s Day take-home kits and frozen trays and offer discounts – attractive enough to encourage patrons to consider celebrating at home, just to avail of your promo. Or, why not mix it up and come up with unique bundles that have dine-in and take-out components? The beauty of bundles is that you can be creative in their curation.

Furthermore, a digital platform like Zap E-store can help you with inventory management, lessening the burden of manually organizing online and in-store offerings. Use these digital tools to streamline processes. The less time spent on procedures, the more time for creativity and innovation!

Preorders are now part of the norm

Lastly, the pandemic taught us that consumers are now not just willing but are actually proactive in using the internet and digital tools to ease processes and cut waiting times.

So for Father’s Day, why not be prepared for those that are bound to visit your website looking to get a leg-up on the pack of dine-in customers and deliveries they know are coming on Father’s Day? Don’t just allow pre-orders; create “early bird” rates and bonuses for those that will digitally pre-order or pre-deliver their dishes. Reward them for their foresight!

Through this, it’s not the customers that will only benefit. You, as an entrepreneur, will also get an idea of how many people you’ll be serving and what dishes will be in demand on the day of the occasion. This, in turn, will help you plan ahead.

A service like Zap E-Store will get you ready for such occasions as it streamlines workflows and removes manual processes like inventory management and delivery coordination. This will allow you more time for other value-adding activities, like interacting with these customers that pre-ordered. Knowing that you’re taking extra time to make their special occasion even more special will build loyalty to your business.

Creative promos, special bundles, and customizable pre-orders are just some ideas that take advantage of our new hybrid reality. Having an E-store powered by Zap allows you to be creative with your F&B business. Your store, your customers, YOUR control. Now, are you ready for Father’s Day?

Is your restaurant ready for our new hybrid reality?

Photo by Bluerhinomedia

As our world begins to open up again and we start to realize that the leisures we indulged in before, like dining out, are finally here to stay (hopefully!), restaurateurs and food entrepreneurs are faced with a new question. How will they integrate the new way of life they built during the pandemic with the fulfilling dine-in experience they will be returning to?

Two years in, we all know how the pandemic taught F&B businesses the importance of going online. It was an “evolve or perish” scenario where all had to embrace digital in one form or another. Whether that be merely accepting online payments to setting up their own websites and e-commerce platforms. However, full hybridization – where equal priority is given to creating a fulfilling experience both online and on-ground for your restaurant – presents a new set of challenges.

For example, how do you bring the loyal online customers you’ve cultivated over the pandemic to your store and vice-versa? Is there a way to apply the customer programs you’ve built over the pandemic to in-store dining? And most importantly, how do you still keep your online store appealing?

Innovate and differentiate

Photo by Sam Lion

Just as COVID-19 forced many restaurateurs and food entrepreneurs to pivot, so should this “return to normal.” Think of it as the final stage of your business’ transformation – from in-store to online to a total merging of the two. 

What were the best experiences customers garnered dining in-store that you couldn’t replicate online? What were the best practices that made your business thrive amidst the pandemic? Can these things go together?

Designing restaurant operations in this new hybrid reality doesn’t necessarily mean a uniform experience covering online and in-store. Hybridization also entails customizability and applying channel-specific best practices; it is about complementing rather than being identical.

For example, over the pandemic, a business created take-home kits and frozen trays for their best-selling dishes so that patrons could experience these products from the comforts of their homes. Just because the in-store dining is as lively as it once was, it doesn’t necessarily mean that these new pandemic-born products have to be offered in-store too.

Plan for variety. Create products offerings that are exclusively online. Create special discounts for products purchased in-store. Think of ideas that encourage people to explore your channels.

A digital platform like Zap E-store can help you with inventory management, lessening the burden of manually organizing online and in-store offerings. As the pandemic taught us, use digital tools to streamline processes. The less time spent on procedures, the more time for creativity and innovation.

Incentivize, online and in-store

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio

A service like Zap E-Store allows you to directly see which customers keep coming back to your F&B business without the stress of exorbitant commission fees. Use this to your advantage in growing closer to your audience.

Ideally, your online and in-store presence complement each other, and this forms a nice loop in the customer journey. Using a rewards program gives you the power to not just solely incentivize online and in-store purchases; it allows you to encourage both.

For example, online deliveries and purchases can lead to discounts or freebies that can be availed on the customer’s next dine-in. Likewise, dine-in patronage can also lead to delivery discounts, promos, and other deals.

Having an E-store powered by Zap allows you to own your food business. Your store, your customers, YOUR control.

Customer service translates

Photo by Mentatdgt

Lastly, all these efforts to assure that customer experience is a priority amount to something greater: they tell your audience that you care for them and that you are willing to go through multiple pivots to put their needs front and center.

Excellent service translates to customer loyalty. By streamlining your online workflow and removing manual processes like inventory management and delivery coordination, you get to have more time to get to know your customers. Interacting with them, thinking of promos and products for their benefit, rewarding them for continued patronage. 

This online interaction has the same heft as that built through conventional in-store means pre-pandemic. Your customers knowing that you put the effort for them encourages them to believe that you would do the same for their in-store dining experience. There is already trust on which to build a long-standing relationship.

Be creative and innovate, play around with what you can offer online and in-store, incentivize loyalty, and, most importantly, whatever the channel, keep customer service as the top priority. These are the values that will keep your restaurant ready for our new hybrid reality.

Strong and Independent: The Women Behind Your Favorite Brands

Photo by Tima Miroshnichenko

March colored purple. In celebration of International Women’s Day held every March 8, we saw our screens and streets dyed in varying shades of violet and purple. This is a global movement, one that has been championed by the United Nations and various countries around the world since 1975. But to honor the achievements of women from all walks of life, it takes more than just 24 hours. So throughout the month of March, we take the time to celebrate women’s achievements in every field – from science to the academe and even in the culinary world. 

There are enough females in the culinary industry to fill a whole book with names but here we showcase the women at the helm of some of our favorite foodie spots: 



Summer is fast approaching. You can literally feel it in the air. As Filipinos, there’s nothing that screams summer more than a bowl of shaved ice immersed in milk and some mais or langka with our favorite home-grown ube ice cream. This is Iceberg’s at its essence – the nostalgia of a hot Philippine summer brought to the table.



Yao’s Kitchen is all about Chinoy comfort food. The Filipino palette is fascinating, and when we say comfort food it could be just about anything. But Sundays spent ordering dimsum from the fast-moving carts around the restaurant or battling cousins around the lazy susan for the first spoonful of steaming hot Yang Chow Fried Rice is another kind of comfort altogether.  



King Chef believes that the customer is King… or Queen. This is not only a restaurant, but a royal dining room, where the food is created to suit each person’s individuality. From creative spins on traditional dimsum platters to to full-on party sets and even frozen options to keep in your freezers for a rainy day, King Chef aims to bring the royal treatment right to the doorstep. 



Raise your hand if you’ve never craved some Japanese goodies. No one? It’s because, at one time or another, we’ve all marveled at the goodness of Japanese breads and pastries. This is what Jipan is most known for – a home for artisanal Japanese cuisine. From delectable loaves to sumptuous dishes, Jipan is dedicated to bringing creative and delicious food to their customers.



Take Root has only three rules: Junk-Free, Plant-Based, and Addicting. This forward-looking shop is led by not one but two phenomenal ladies. Their goal is to bring wellness to the households of their customers and “let the good habits take root.” In the time of overwork, fatigue, and burnout we’re all in great need of a change in lifestyle and mentality. Take Root will support you every step of the way. 

Who knew so much of our comfort foods were being brought to us by phenomenal women? It’s true what they say: Behind every great brand is an even greater woman. The Zap e-store hopes to bring these experiences straight to you, so you’ll never have to crave for another halo-halo or kale chips or dimsum platter ever again. In working with Zap, these five women have also been able to amplify and enhance their brands for you, their valued customer.

Grow Your Home Food Business for 2023!

It’s that time of year again! For many businesses, the holiday season is a particularly lucrative time of year – sales tend to increase significantly over the rest of the year, and this can have a serious positive impact on the bottom line of your business. So what can you do to help ensure that your business is able to take full advantage of this opportunity?

Well, one of the most effective things you can do is to start selling online via an online store and if you have one already… it’s not too late to step up and find more ways to make your marketing initiatives to better perform and grow efficiently! Inspired by ZAP’s webinar called: Grow Your Home Food Business- here’s our tips for you to run a successful year ahead!

1.) Start Your E-Store:

Starting an E-Store is a great way to grow your business and gain new customers in the festive period and beyond. By having an online shop, you can reach people all around the world, and sell your products or services to customers in your area as well as those further afield. Start your e-store with ZAP. 

2.) Set Up Your Loyalty Program:

A loyalty program offers a number of benefits to you and your customers. It can help to increase sales and build stronger relationships with your customers, while also encouraging repeat business by offering special discounts to loyal customers. Setting up a loyalty program doesn’t have to be complicated or expensive – there are a number of options out there that allow you to set up a loyalty program quickly and easily. Set up Your Loyalty Program. 

3.)SMS Marketing Campaigns:

SMS marketing is an underrated marketing strategy and can easily be overlooked in favor of more ‘flashy’ tactics such as social media and email marketing campaigns. ZAP Fetch– our latest marketing precision tool offers an effective way of getting your message out there and engaging with customers. You can promote your customized discount codes for a particular product/ service  and announcements and be able to target specific markets according to your campaigns.

You can also use text messages to encourage customer testimonials, which can help you to build up a following of loyal customers who are likely to recommend you to their friends and family.

WEBINAR: Grow Your Home Food Business

If your starting your culinary empire from home, view our Webinar: Growing your Home Food Business to learn the best way to grow your business from home, and take your store online. Utilizing ZAP’s E-Store, problems such as manual orders, payment verification, and delivery integration become a thing of the past.

#UnpopularOpinion: Your Favorite Small Business Might Not Be Making Money

Photo credits: Photo by

and here’s why:

Supporting local businesses has been a widespread movement for Filipinos since the pandemic started, with #LoveLocal and #SupportLocal hashtags trending on most platforms. However, despite the support, a significant portion of the revenue generated for these small businesses don’t actually go to the business itself! 

Small food businesses lose 20-30% of their revenue to third party platforms

When the pandemic hit, a lot of food businesses were faced with a giant problem: Hhow can they sell on a digital space without losing a chunk of their revenue to third party platforms like GrabFood or Foodpanda?

When a local or small food business joins a third party platform, chances are they’ll need to pay commission fees amounting to 20-30% of their profits, with most micro businesses on the higher end. Why? Because only larger merchants are given the advantage of negotiating these fees down, in exchange for bringing in a certain volume of orders to the platform in question.

Kaloka, ‘di ba? Let’s run the numbers.

Our sample merchant, Alfredo Bakery, is a small home-based business. They wanted to scale up and opted to sell on Foodpanda. The commission fee they were given was 25%. That means, for an order worth P500, Foodpanda immediately gets a commission of P125, leaving the business with only P375.

However, there are other costs to take into account: food cost, which can be anywhere from 30-50% of revenue, staff salary, and location rent, to name the major operational expenses. If Alfredo Bakery had a monthly revenue of P100,000, a total of P25,000 would be lost to platform fees alone.

Alfredo Bakery’s Monthly Profit Margins & Operational Expenses

Despite the increase in food delivery orders, can a small business actually survive with these costs?

The solution most small business owners turned to was to start with accepting orders using Facebook or Instagram. Other business owners set up their own ordering website on easy-to-use platforms like Shopify. 

Unfortunately, the accessibility and user-friendly interface of the Grab app or Foodpanda still have customers turning to them first before ordering directly from the business, leaving them with tighter margins.

Photo credits: Photo by Hanako

As compared to sales on platforms with high commission fees, sales from direct channels (even with promos) give merchants higher margins. To encourage ordering directly from merchants businesses opt to run these win-win campaigns to promote such channels. As Abi Dinaya, Hanako’s Marketing Associate shares, We try to match the discounts offered on 3rd party platforms on our own [direct] channels [and] another inevitable tactic was to mark-up our prices on [third party] platforms and match their low delivery rates.”

Thankfully, Abi says that Hanako’s sales are growing by the month, with the help of their consistent promotions. Check out for exclusive website promos!

As a consumer, how can I effectively support small local food businesses?

The answer is simple: spare a quick minute to search for your favorite local food businesses’ direct selling channels – be it on Facebook, Instagram. e-commerce ordering websites, like Shopify, also provide a more convenient experience for both customers and business owners, since products and their prices are immediately displayed, and payment can be done online as well without manual processing.

“As a local brand, we appreciate [your] continuous patronage for a local Japanese restaurant like ours! We look forward to [continuing] to satisfy [your] authentic cravings. 💚”

– Abi Dinaya, Hanako
Photo credits: Photo by Hanako

Many small businesses are trying their best to survive and push past the many hurdles from the pandemic; however, small mindful changes in our buying habits may just give them a fighting chance to thrive.

Do you have a food business, but don’t have the time to set up an ecommerce store on your own? Let ZAP help you! Visit our website at!

How these restaurants made it big despite the pandemic

There is still no concrete data on how many restaurants were severely affected or closed down due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, walk down any Metro Manila pre-pandemic food spot – whether that be Poblacion, Kapitolyo, or Maginhawa – and the number of “For Rent” signs you’ll come across would be enough to paint a picture.

“Our brands, King Sisig and Bulalo World, were hit hard by lockdown,” said Rafael Nemeno, owner of Royal House Food group. “Our business was primarily based in malls and relied heavily on dine-in revenue,” he explained.

Nemeno’s story is just one of many. The government’s closing of public venues during the early days of the pandemic, as well as the consumer preference to stay indoors even when safety regulations were finally relaxed, forced entrepreneurs to pivot. It was an “evolve or perish” scenario. And this evolution, for the most part, involved embracing digital.

Digital transformation pain points

According to Forbes, globally, 6 out of 10 businesses digitally transformed their businesses. This ranged from accepting online payments to setting up their own websites and e-commerce platforms. 

For Rafael Nemeno, at least for his group, their digital transformation had to go back further. It also required them to rethink things from the ground up; they had to adjust their menu. They came up with frozen food pack versions of their best-selling dishes like bulalo, sisig, crispy tawilis, and kare-kare. Of course, these pivots would be all for nothing if they didn’t use technology to make their food available to the people.

Nemeno, now operates, an E-store powered by Zap, which allows Filipinos to order their favorite Filipino food for pick-up or delivery.

Amare La Cucina, a famous Italian restaurant located in the Kapitolyo food district, found themselves in a similar predicament. They also had to switch operations to focus on deliveries and pick-up since dine-in was not allowed during the pandemic.

However, their pain points came in their chosen method of adaptation. Early into their journey into digital transformation, Amare La Cucina took orders via phone and Facebook Messenger. According to Tristan Tio, co-owner of the Italian resto, this led to frequent back and forths between their representatives and customers.

Tio and his business partners also tried their hand at the delivery app route, but they found a huge chunk of their income going into the apps’ fees.

Today, both owners still use food delivery apps but mainly just to boost customer discovery. They found better success in doing in-house deliveries.

“[When we set-up our own E-store] we got a lot more in-house deliveries. This saved us a lot from the commissions that the apps get,” explained Tio. “Since we posted about our site on social media, most of our orders would go directly to the website.”

Success in E-stores

Both restaurateurs Nemeno and Tio attribute their success to their E-stores. For Nemeno, the convenience of removing manual processes like inventory management and delivery coordination helped their efficiency, boosting the overall customer experience.  

“Zap E-Store helped us build this website. Powered by their technology, our customers are able to conveniently schedule their orders with complete delivery addresses and details up to the hour,” explained Nemeno.

On the other hand, Tio couldn’t hide his happiness when talking about Amare La Cucina’s website. “I think the site being user-friendly was a come-on for most guests, and perhaps that resulted in additional orders,” he expressed.

Coming from their stories, both restaurateurs agree that they genuinely enjoy the benefits of customizability with their E-stores. They get to exercise ownership in how they want to operate their shops. Aside from the efficiency and higher profit margins, they can implement their promos, discounts, and loyalty programs.

For them, an E-store feels more than just a website. An E-store is the closest thing to running your own actual restaurant online.

For restaurateurs looking to digitally transform their business in a way that’s efficient and effective in building loyalty, you can check this link to learn how to set up your E-store: