Local food delivery service SB Menus has grown considerably since it was founded four years ago by former Santa Barbara City College students Dusty Stutsman and Bryan Brand.
The website allows users to order delivery or take-out from over 50 restaurants in the area including Deja Vu, Silvergreens, Rosarito, I.V. Deli Mart, Crushcakes & Cafe, Angry Wings, Javan’s, Gina’s Pizza and many more. According to Brand, SB Menus was not an instant success, and the two founders initially had a hard time tapping into the right audience.
“There’s a couple of things that played into our growth,” Brand said. “The first year was extremely rough, our marketing was spread really thin, and we weren’t focused on the right markets and demographics.”
Since Stutsman and Brand launched the marketing campaign Eat Cheap Week in 2010, however, they have since seen their business boom. According to Brand, the website now hosts 50,000 visitors on average per month.
“Ever since then, we’ve been doubling our clientele,” Brand said.
According to Stutsman, the two got the idea from a similar website for students at the University of Michigan, EatBlue.com.
“We both loved Santa Barbara, and we both wanted to start our own business, and we saw an opportunity with a model like this because there was nothing like it, especially with Isla Vista and UCSB,” Stutsman said. “There’s a ton of great restaurants, people ordering all of the time, and we just wanted to provide a little more convenient medium.”
Along with launching the website, Brand and Stutsman have taken on a number of other ventures, including NightOut.com, a spinoff of their original business. NightOut.com allows users to stay up to date with local events, happy hours and places for those interested in searching for the best nightlife experience.
“There’s no websites like it that aggregates places with happy hours and special events,” Brand said. “Since we have re-launched our platform, it’s been doing really well.”
Brand also said SB Menus has expanded its reach, moving from a solely computer interface to the mobile sphere.
“We just recently launched our mobile site as well, so now you can order from your mobile phone, which has been huge,” Brand said. “We have seen that about 15 percent of our overall orders are coming from iPads, iPhones and Android users.”
Fourth-year chemical engineering major Rafael Prato, one of the thousands of student patrons of SB Menus, said he uses the website multiple times a month.
“It’s a good option for when I’m studying or don’t want to leave the house. I also use it a lot when midterms roll around,” Prato said. “I’ve been using it for the past two years. It’s really convenient and the ordering process is really quick.”