Internet shopping has allowed Web giants like Amazon to squash mom-and-pop businesses from booksellers to gadget shops .The latest victim: Your neighborhood pizza parlor.
For many years, major chains like Domino's Pizza and Papa John's International expanded across the country without putting many small rivals out of business. That began to change a few years ago, when the majors slashed pizza prices to levels that were tough to match. By 2012, the majors had a 55 percent share of the domestic pizza delivery market, up from 51.9 percent in 2007, according to market research firm NPD Group.
Now, the big guys have another weapon that most corner pizza parlors don't—a robust online ordering system. Through platforms on desktop computers and mobile devices, consumers can order pizza without picking up the phone. The system stores credit card information and keeps track of past orders, making it possible to place a delivery order in seconds.
The dominance of big chains in other restaurant categories suggests the pizza majors have a long way to go. Large quick-service chains have a 71 percent share of the sandwich market, an 82 percent share of the Mexican food market and 96 percent of the hamburger market, NPD Group estimates