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How to Avoid Avoidable Cancellation

Some order cancellations are outside of your control. Here are tips for minimizing the ones you can control.

4 min read
2/24/2022
Person putting food in DoorDash bag

What is Avoidable Cancellation?

It happens: orders get canceled. Sometimes, those cancellations can be avoided, and sometimes they can’t. Avoidable cancellations are orders that are canceled — by you, your customers, or DoorDash – that could have been avoided. This includes cancellations due to: 

  • Store hours not being up to date

  • A store continuing to accept orders when they are too busy to fulfill them

  • Out-of-stock items being listed as available 

  • Lack of timely order confirmation from store 

  • Store staff requests 

  • POS errors (for point-of-sale integrated merchants only)

What does my Avoidable Cancellation number mean?

Your Avoidable Cancellation number measures the percentage of orders that were canceled for reasons within your store’s control. The ideal Avoidable Cancellation rate is less than 0.3%. 

How to reduce your Avoidable Cancellation

Cancellation Reason #1: Your store is closed, but because it is still shown as open on DoorDash, orders were received

Solution: Maintain correct store hours by updating hours in the Portal or by POS/Tablet. This includes holidays and special closure. You should also provide clear Dasher instructions and signage so that Dashers don’t mistakenly report your store as closed.

Cancellation Reason #2: Your store is continuing to accept orders even though you're too busy to fill them in time

Solution: Use the Busy Kitchens tablet feature to update your kitchen status. You can update to Busy to add more prep time to each order or update to Pause to temporarily stop accepting orders. If you don’t have a tablet, pause your store in the Merchant Portal by clicking on Pause Store under Special Closures/Hours in the Business Hours tab.

Cancellation Reason #3: Items are out of stock but are still shown as available on DoorDash

Solution: Ensure your menu is up to date by marking items out of stock via the Portal or by using your POS/tablet.

Cancellation Reason #4: The order was not confirmed by your store in a timely manner

Solution: If using a tablet or POS, set it to auto-confirm orders. If you use phone or email protocol, make sure to confirm orders ASAP. 

Cancellation Reason #5: A staff member requested to cancel the order

Solution: Ensure your staff knows how to handle order issues so that they’re less likely to cancel an order unless absolutely necessary.

Cancellation Reason #6: There was a problem with your POS integration, causing the order to be rejected by your POS system and resulting in a a POS error

Solution: Work with your POS provider to understand what happened and how to avoid it. Common issues include incorrect hours, an outdated menu, capacity throttling, or system setup issues.

How to find your Avoidable Cancellation Rate

avoidable cancellation

Check View Details in the Cancellations tile under Operations Quality in the Merchant Portal.

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