September 28, 2023
DoorDash earns revenue through commission fees, delivery charges, advertising, and a subscription-based model. By understanding these streams, customers and restaurants can make informed decisions about using the platform.

How DoorDash Makes Money: A Comprehensive Look into Its Revenue Streams

If you’re new to the world of food delivery apps, DoorDash is a name you probably have heard before. It’s a food delivery platform that connects customers with local restaurants, allowing them to browse menus and place orders through the app. DoorDash then delivers the food straight to the customers’ doorsteps, often within just a few minutes. In this article, we will explore the various ways DoorDash earns revenue and how that affects its business model.

Commission Fees

The primary way DoorDash makes money is through commission fees collected from the restaurants and other food vendors it partners with. Whenever a customer places an order through DoorDash, the platform takes a percentage of the sale, typically around 20-30%. The exact commission rate can vary based on a range of factors. These include the size of the order, the type of food being sold, and the location of the restaurant. Additionally, DoorDash may charge different commission rates for different areas or times of day depending on supply and demand.

Restaurants that partner with DoorDash sometimes complain about these high commission fees, which can eat into their profit margins. However, the platform argues that it provides several benefits to these businesses, including more exposure to customers who might not have known about them otherwise and access to a wider market.

Delivery Charges

In addition to commission fees, DoorDash also makes money through delivery charges. Whenever customers place an order through the platform, they are charged a delivery fee, typically between $1-$5. This fee is passed onto DoorDash, which uses it to fund the costs of delivering the food, including the drivers’ wages and other expenses like gas and maintenance. Delivery fees can vary based on several factors, such as distance, time of day, and the demand in the area.

It’s worth noting that DoorDash’s delivery drivers do not receive the entire delivery fee as compensation. Instead, they are paid a base fee for each order, plus any tips given by customers. This has led to some controversy in the past, with some drivers claiming the pay is not always enough to compensate them fairly for their time and expenses.

Subscription-Based Model

DoorDash offers a subscription service called “DashPass,” which gives customers free delivery on eligible orders over a certain amount. For a monthly or annual fee, customers can unlock this benefit as well as some additional perks like discounted prices and exclusive deals. Subscribers also help DoorDash earn money, as the platform gets to keep the subscription fees paid by members.

While DashPass costs money, it can still save customers money in the long run, especially if they use DoorDash frequently. Additionally, restaurants may benefit from this service, as it incentivizes customers to order more food and potentially spend more money overall.


Another way DoorDash earns revenue is through advertising. The platform offers several advertising solutions for restaurants and food vendors, including “featured” listings, which prioritize certain restaurants in search results, and targeted ads that appear in the app. These ads can cost a significant amount of money, but they can also help businesses increase their visibility on the platform and attract new customers.

Additional Services

DoorDash has recently expanded into other services beyond food delivery, including grocery and alcohol delivery. These options operate similarly to the core food delivery service, with DoorDash taking a percentage of each sale as a commission fee. This diversification of services allows DoorDash to reach new markets and potentially earn additional revenue streams.


DoorDash’s business model is based on a few key revenue streams, including commission fees, delivery charges, and advertising. Its subscription-based service, DashPass, and other services like grocery and alcohol delivery are additional ways the platform can earn money. By understanding how DoorDash makes money, customers can make informed decisions about using the platform and potentially save money on their orders. Meanwhile, restaurants can decide whether or not to partner with the platform based on the benefits and drawbacks of the commission and advertising fees. Overall, DoorDash’s model is successful but complicated, highlighting the precarious position that many gig economy businesses operate in today.

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