The creators of the app are launching MealMe at the University of Georgia this week. The app is currently available for download, but the company founders say they’re working with still students and restaurants in the area to get feedback.
MealMe is an app that compares the restaurant delivery costs among different services and allows the user to check out within the application. Co-founder and president of MealMe Matthew Bouchner said the goal of the company is to be “the number one app you use when you’re hungry.”
Bouchner and co-founder Will Said created MealMe in 2016 as a “social media for food.” according to their website. Users could post pictures of their meals on the app and interact with other posts. As the app was developed, Bouchner and Said abandoned the social aspect and pivoted to using MealMe as a sort of search engine.
Currently, users can browse a list of available restaurants in the area and compare delivery times and cost between major food delivery apps or from the restaurant directly. From there, they can check out within the application.
The features are aimed at an increasingly informed population, Bouchner said. But they’re also focused on convenience.
“We help users to be the most informed that they can about the different options,” Bouchner said, “[But] you also are a human and want the most convenient thing possible.”
That focus on information and easy access has brought Bouchner and MealMe to college campuses. Bouchner, who graduated from Emory University last year, said college kids order a lot of delivery on their smaller budgets. As the company has grown, he’s begun to expand to a number of college towns. Bouchner also keeps the MealMe team largely composed of college students.
Recent student hire and marketing intern Naureen Kurji is one example. She found the internship through TikTok, one of the many social media outlets MealMe uses.
“I think we're definitely catering to the younger audience,” Kurji said, “Because we do use unique techniques to kind of get in front of their faces and promote the app.”
While MealMe is youth-oriented externally and internally, its work doesn’t stop there. As the app expands to different college campuses, the MealMe team talks with students firsthand. Kurji says their strategy involves getting direct feedback from organizations on campus.
“What we’re doing is reaching out to student organizations, business ones, food clubs, whatever it is, and just really talking to them and seeing what they want to see from the app,” Kurji said.
Bouchner also said he lets students ask advice of him in these meetings, on things like being a startup and having an entrepreneurial spirit.
While MealMe’s services currently only work with restaurants, Bouchner has goals for the app’s future. He said MealMe aims to help with “grocery delivery, meal kits or even platforms that allow home cooks to sell their meals.”
MealMe is currently available in Athens and can be downloaded on the app store.