Grubhub uses thousands of fake websites to increase commission costs from real companies

Grubhub has purchased tens of thousands of domain names that resemble those of companies they work with or pitch to get to the platform, reports New food economy. Those domains, of which Grubhub owns no fewer than 23,000, are used as a landing page for the official company, complete with an online order form, even though the sites are completely separate from the restaurants themselves.


Restaurant restorers call it the practice of the predator business. Grubhub leads customers to believe that they order directly from restaurants to help companies not pay Grubhub fees. The online order giant, the largest in the country, is the parent company of multiple food delivery services, including Eat24, MenuPages and Seamless. However, it is spot as the top of the delivery market is threatened through competitive services such as DoorDash and Uber Eats.

Left: the original company site / right: the Grubhub shadow site
Image via new food economy

The domains owned by Grubhub use a template that is consistent on all shadow sites. They contain items from the restaurant's menu and sometimes the sites use photos from the restaurant's official website or from competing delivery services. I am well acquainted with the tactics because – and here is the big revelation – my parents have a restaurant in Queens, New York and they are currently listed on both Seamless / Grubhub and Caviar. They also have an official restaurant site.

An alternative website with a similar sounding URL (.com versus .net) set up by Grubhub without their express permission uses the restaurant's original logo and food photos taken by a Caviar photographer. The site also contains several "Order now" links that lead to the mention Seamless and a telephone number that is not linked to the official company number of the restaurant.

Grubhub loads everywhere from a 3 to 15 percent commission depending on whether a restaurant offers its own delivery fleet. However, if a customer orders orders from Grubhub & # 39; s & # 39; marketing & # 39; charge one order. These costs also apply to telephone orders, for which Grubhub was charged after a lawsuit allegedly committed by the company charging commission for false phone calls that did not immediately result in an order.

Although business owners may be able to file a lawsuit against Grubhhub to remove these sites, it is an option that is often too expensive and time-consuming for small businesses. The edge has approached Grubhub for comment and will update when we hear again.

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