GonnaOrder Help Center

Configure Order Desired Time, Schedule and Slots Settings

GonnaOrder has a variety of independent settings for ordering and schedules. However, we have several settings that affect both ordering and are related to schedules. These include, but are not limited to, same day ordering, time slots, and upfront order dates. We will help you understand how every feature works in this page.


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Request order date upfront

GonnaOrder allows you to specify whether you want customers to select a date and time when they can receive their orders. This is what we refer to as the order date upfront. When you enable this setting for your store, a customer will be able to specify the day or time for their order. The store will then find the appropriate schedules for the selected day and time and present a harmonized menu with all available products. Essentially, customers can place post-dated orders.

This setting appears under schedules in the settings section of your GonnaOrder dashboard as shown below.

Allow customers to request order dates in the future
Request order date upfront

When set to enabled, a calendar icon and a time selection dropdown will appear below the opening times on the customer interface and they can choose the day and time for their orders as shown below. On the other hand, when set to disabled, GonnaOrder will interpret the setting to mean that the store does not take post-dated orders. For the example case, we have selected a date in March to be the order date.

Upfront order desired time selection
Day and time selection for order date upfront

The moment a customer selects a future date for an order, GonnaOrder will remember this and associate the date with the said order. Therefore, on the order page, instead of suggesting the current date for the order desired date, GonnaOrder will suggest the selected future date and show the customer the available timeslots they can choose from.

GonnaOrder remembers future date date selected
Future order date on customer interface

Maximum items per slot

The maximum items per slot represents the numeric total, equal to or greater than zero, items that a store can handle in a single time slot. When set, GonnaOrder will disable any time slot that has received the maximum items and customers will not be able to schedule delivery or pick up orders within that time.

This settings is useful for stores that sell items that are time intensive in preparation. For example, a local pizzeria owner and his staff can only prepare a maximum of 15 pizza orders in 30 minutes. During this time, the store can still serve coffee, tea, soft drinks, and other easy-to-prepare products.

For this reason, not every store product should count towards the maximum items per slot. You can pick which items, if included in an order, will affect this number and hence the availability of the slot. Maximum items per slots uses the same logic as the maximum number of orders per slots but now for main store items.

Set maximum items your store can fulfil in a slot
Maximum items per slot setting

After setting the maximum items per slot, you need to set items whose orders should count towards the sum. This you do by visiting the catalog from your store dashboard and on individual item details. Using the Pizza we mentioned earlier, we can go to the Pizza details page and enable the Count against slot count button. You can learn more from the manage store items help page.

Set store item orders to count against slot count
Count against slot count setting in item details

Same day ordering

In restaurants, and in general the hospitality industry, some items are more complex than others. In the same vein, some items may require more time and planning to prepare. Therefore, a restaurant manager may choose to have deferred orders for some items.

Take an example case where a restaurant manager needs to buy and slaughter chicken to sell or any other complicated product you may think about. The manager needs to know how many chicken will be needed on a particular day upfront for the sake of the logistics. This means the restaurant, hotel, eatery or bar cannot receive an order for such an item and process it on the same day.
That is why we have the Same day ordering setting for all the available delivery modes to cater for this and other scenarios. Same day ordering is enabled for all delivery modes and all products in the store by default.

To change this to fit your preferences, you need to visit store settings and then choose Schedules. Under schedules, scroll down to find the Same day ordering and toggle the button to Disabled or Enabled as the case may be. See image below.

Allow customers to place orders and have them delivered same day
Same day ordering enabled

Turning off same day ordering for your store means that every customer will be required to select a date when they want to receive their order. Failure to choose a date other than the order submission date will result in a error and the customer will be notified that the store does not accept same day orders.

Customer alert: Same day ordering is disabled
Error: Same day ordering is accepted by store

Same day ordering for individual items

Same day ordering is both a store-wide settings as well as an item-level setting. This means you can choose to enable same day ordering for all items through the store-wide setting we have explained above, or you can enable/disable the setting for selected products.

To enable or disable Same day ordering for individual products, visit your store dashboard and choose Catalog from the side menu. Select the category under which the order you want to edit resides to bring up the list of available items.

Pick a category in your store catalog
Choosing a category under catalog

From the list of available items, choose the one for which you want to change the same day ordering settings and click on the Edit icon next to its name.

Pick an item to edit
Editing an item to update same day ordering setting

By default, all items have the same day ordering setting enabled.

Allow same day ordering for individual store item
 Same day ordering setting for store items

If you choose to disable the setting for any item, then you need to be aware that customers will need to choose a desired date for their order. If a customer attempts to submit an order containing an item whose same day ordering is disabled without changing the order desired date, they will be informed the product cannot be ordered on the same day. They will then have to edit the order to remove the said item or to change the order desired date.

Customer alert: Same day ordering disabled for product
Error: Same day ordering disabled for item

Request desired time as soon as possible

GonnaOrder allows you to control whether you can process orders as soon as possible. This is possible for the three available delivery methods where each is independent of the other. Simply put, you can disable/enable the setting for one delivery mode without affecting the rest.
By default, this setting is disabled for table ordering but enabled for pickup and delivery at address orders.

Enable or Disable ASAP time for orders
Desired time ASAP

When enabled, the customer sees the option to receive or pick their orders as soon as possible from the store.

ASAP enabled: Customers can choose ASAP time
Customer UI when Order desired time ASAP is enabled

On the other hand, disabling the setting removes the option for customers to receive orders as soon as possible. In this case, the customer will have to pick a date and time when it is convenient for them to receive the order.

ASAP disabled: Customer must specify when they want their order
Customer UI when desired time ASAP is disabled

Request desired time in future

The desired time in future setting allows you to configure the store so that orders are processed and served/delivered in your own timing or within a customer’s selected future time.

Having the future desired time setting enabled means customers can specify a date and time when the order should be fulfilled. However, the selected desired delivery time must be within the store’s operating time.

On the contrary, disabling this setting for a particular delivery mode implies that customers cannot specify a future time when they would like to receive orders for the said delivery mode.

For closed stores, only the delivery modes for which future desired time is enabled will be enabled on the order page.

You can enable/disable order desired time in future for each delivery mode independently.

Enable or disable future time for orders
Desired time future time

Selecting a future date for an order

To select a future time for an order, customers can either click on the calendar icon to choose the day or use the arrow buttons to either move to the next or previous day appropriately. To choose the time for the order, a customer will click on the drop-down time field and pick a time/time slot.

See also how to share a store link customized with a future menu and order date.

Selecting future order date via calendar
Selecting future order date with calendar
Selecting future order date with navigation arrows
selecting future order date with forward and back arrows

How future order desired time works with ASAP time setting

The future order desired time setting works together with the ASAP time setting and store opening and ordering times. There are only three possible combinations of the two settings per delivery mode.

  • Both ASAP and future order desired time enabled
  • Only future order desired time is enabled
  • Both ASAP and future order desired time disabled or only ASAP enabled for one delivery mode

Tip

Notice that ordering for a particular delivery mode can be controlled by a schedule and in that case, a store is considered closed if a customer attempts to place an order outside the given ordering times.

How future order desired time works with ASAP time
Asap and future order desired time

When both ASAP and future order desired time are enabled

Case 1: Open store
If a customer visits an open store and picks a delivery mode for which both the ASAP time and future desired time settings are enabled, they will be required to select between having their order fulfilled as soon as possible or selecting a day and time when the order can be fulfilled.

Case 2: Closed store
For a closed store, customers will still be able to place new orders but only if they can pick a future time for order fulfillment. The ASAP option will be disabled and a message indicating the store is closed shown on the screen.

ASAP and future time enabled for open store
Asap for open store enabled
ASAP time disabled for closed store
Asap for closed store disabled

Only future order desired time is enabled

If a customer chooses a delivery mode for which only future order desired time is enabled, then they will be prompted to select a date and time when they would like to have the order fulfilled. The ASAP option is not displayed in this case.

This applies to both open and closed stores.

Only future time enabled

Both ASAP and future order desired time settings are disabled or only ASAP time is enabled

Case 1: Open store
If a customer chooses a delivery method for which both ASAP and future order desired time settings are disabled or only ASAP time is enabled, they will not need to select when they would like to receive the order. The prompts are hidden so that the customer only provides identifying information to facilitate order fulfillment.

Selection for ASAP and future time hidden
Both ASAP time and future time selection hidden

Case 2: Closed store
If future desired time is disabled for all delivery modes, regardless of whether the desired time as soon as possible is enabled for one or all delivery modes, customers will not be able to add items to the cart or submit orders when the store is closed. For product detail pages, the button to add an item to order will no longer be available in closed stores.

Additionally, customers will not be able to add items to order with a single click.

Closed store notice; future desired time disabled
Store closed notice
Add to order button not shown on details page
Add to order button not shown on details page

Desired time intervals -Minutes

Desired time intervals is essentially the difference between the times suggested for order pickup or delivery by the store. The interval is set in minutes and you can have any value. By default, GonnaOrder will have the desired time interval set to 15 minutes but you can change this to your liking.

setting desired time intervals
Changing the desired time intervals

In the example case, we have chosen 30 and 15 minutes to be the desired time intervals for pick up and delivery at address respectively. See the images below to see the desired times displayed to the customer based on these desired time intervals.

Different desired time intervals for different delivery modes
Desired time intervals on the customer interface

Display desired time format

The desired time format setting indicates how desired time will be displayed to customers. There are two possible display methods that GonnaOrder can use to show your desired time format.

desired time format: times and time slots
Display desired time format
  • Times: Using this format, the customer is shown exact possible times after which they may receive their orders. Depending on the desired time intervals you have chosen for your store, the times can be de displayed like 13:15, 13:30, 13:45 and so on.
  • Desired time format: Times
    Display desired time format: Times
  • Time slots: When this option is chosen, the desired time is displayed as an interval, for example, 13:00 – 13:30 and 13:30 – 13:45. The interval in this case is determined by your selected time slot duration.
  • Desired time format: Time slots
    Display desired time formats: Time slots

Slot Duration

The slot duration field allows you to specify a duration in minutes that you can use as a reference frame for your store. The duration can be of any length but it is preferable to have 15, 30, or 45 minutes. The slot duration you choose will determine the values GonnaOrder displays when you choose Time slots as the desired time display format.

Setting the slot duration
Changing the slot duration

With the settings in this example case, GonnaOrder will display the desired time for the three delivery methods as intervals. However, the slot durations will be different as set in the image above.

Different slot duration for different delivery modes
Slot duration on the customer interface

The image on the left shows the desired time in slots for pick orders while the one on the right is a display of desired times in slots for delivery orders. Notice that the slot duration for pick up orders is 15 minutes while that of delivery orders is 30 minutes. It is also important that you notice the overlapping timeslots for delivery orders. The desired time intervals set for the store are the cause.

If desired time intervals duration is less than the slot duration for the same delivery mode, the slots will overlap. The opposite is also true where the store may have disjoint time slots if the slot duration is less than the desired time interval. We do not recommend disjoint time slots. You should ensure the slot duration is always higher than the desired time interval.

Overlapping and disjoint time slots
Overlapping and disjoint time slots

Limit orders per slot

This setting allows you to choose whether to limit the number of orders you can receive in a single time slot. By default, GonnaOrder has disabled this setting for all three delivery modes and customers can place unlimited orders in any time slot. When the Orders per slot limit is reached, your store will temporarily disable ordering for the given timeslot.

Limit orders per slot
Limit orders per slot

Orders per slot

This setting is associated with the Limit orders per slot that we have explained above. You only need to fill in a value here if the said setting is enabled. Note that the value you choose for this field, will be the maximum number of orders you can receive in a time slot for a given delivery mode. Therefore, if you choose 35, 20 and 15 to be the orders per slot for table service, pickup and delivery at address respectively, you will only receive as many orders for the delivery modes within a single time slot.

The number of orders per slot is independent for every delivery mode. Therefore, if you receive more pickup orders than table service orders, the pick up option will remain disabled from the moment its limit is reached until your store enters a new time slot. Once customers have placed the maximum number of orders as specified by this setting, GonnaOrder will disable the slot and highlight the next available timeslot.

GonnaOrder will highlight the next available time slot
next possible timeslot highlighted

In the above image, the customer cannot select the 16:45 – 17:00 timeslot as the desired time for the order because the store has received maximum number of orders for the given slot and the selected delivery method.

If only a single order was remaining before a time slot is disabled for a given delivery mode and two customers were placing orders at almost the same time, the first order submitted will disable ordering for the given time slot. The second customer would then have to change the time slot or delivery mode. This is a rare situation that does not always happen and which does not cause significant inconvenience to customers. The message below will be displayed to a customer if they are caught up in this kind of slot fill up.

Customer alert: Time slot is not available
Error: Timeslot not available

Desired future time in minutes

The desired future time setting refers to the minimum duration in the future, after which a customer can have their orders fulfilled. GonnaOrder allows a maximum of three days order waiting time which amounts to 4320 minutes. Therefore, you can only enter a numeric value greater than zero and not exceeding 4320 for any of the delivery modes.
If you set 2880 minutes(2 days) to be the desired future time in minutes for delivery orders, GonnaOrder will only allow customers to pick an order desired delivery date not earlier than current date plus two days. Therefore, If a customer attempted to place a delivery order with future time on a Monday, they would have to choose the wish day to be Wednesday the same week or or later.

Consider the following points when choosing the appropriate future desired time duration for your store:

  • 1 hour has 60 minutes,
  • 6 hours are equivalent to 360 minutes,
  • 12 hours are equivalent to 720 minutes, and
  • 1 day has 24 hours and therefore 1440 minutes.
The maximum desired future time
Desired future time

Attempting to enter a value greater than 4320 minutes will result in an error and GonnaOrder will notify you that the future minimum wish time should be a positive number not larger than 4320 minutes.

Error: Invalid minimum future desired time
Error: minimum future desired time cannot be equal or less than zero and neither can it be greater than 4320 minutes

For customers placing orders in your store, selecting a time slot that is in the past or one that is in the future but which is made unavailable by the future desired time setting will result in an error. In that case, GonnaOrder will let the customers know the next available time slot and they can update the order with the suggested time.

Customer alert: Next available time or time slot
Next available time slot

Default ordering mode

If you have a preferred ordering mode based on your operations, you can save it to the store using this setting. Choosing a default ordering mode means that that mode will be preselected when a customer views their order before submitting. They can then change this to their liking.

Further, GonnaOrder will display most of the settings we have discussed according to the default ordering mode. Particularly, the default ordering mode will be used to display times when the customer can receive the order when the Request order date upfront is enabled.

Setting the default ordering mode for a store
Setting the default ordering mode

Display or hide order desired time

By default, customers choosing to specify when they would like to receive their orders may choose a day as well as a time. However, the time might not be needed depending on the type of products you sell. For this reason, you can choose to hide the time selection field and only allow the customer to choose a desired day for their order.

Hide time selection field for a particular delivery mode
Hide time selection for a delivery mode
Order desired date and time selection
Order desired time selection: date and time

Order desired date only selection
Order desired date selection; time field hidden