Operating a restaurant requires a lot of various skills. You need to be organized, in-control, capable of leadership, good with money management, and detail-oriented. You also need to have good decision-making skills, and the ability to stay calm under pressure.
But the skill that distinguishes the good restaurant owners from the great is a customer-focused mindset. While this attitude makes dining easier for customers and encourages them to return for repeat business, it also serves to make the restaurant cleaner and safer. In essence, as the guest experience is improved in your restaurant, it leads to more profits for you.
Technology plays a major role, however. It’s critical that your technology is set up to accommodate a customer-focused business strategy. Here are a few solutions you’ll need:
In our digital age, online ordering is crucial to keeping customers happy. Especially with COVID-19 and the unique situation it brings, online orders and sales are spiking. To give a sense of that change, one restaurant management platform provider reported an increase in weekly online ordering sales of 840% between February and April. The same provider also reported online ordering growth in large suburbs of 3,868% between February and June. Clearly, customers want more ways to order online.
It’s not just about sales, either. Online ordering lets customers order whenever and wherever they please, skip the waiting period in-person, and spend less time in restaurants. This streamlines the process and keeps it convenient for customers, while maintaining the restaurants’ sanitation.
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If online ordering is growing, then curbside pickup must be as well. Curbside pickup is the perfect companion to online ordering, conveniently automating the pickup process for customers. Restaurants can text customers about the status of their order, and process payments and transactions in the parking lot with specialized rugged tablets. These technologies are made to make things as easy and simple as possible for customers, which will keep them coming back.
Some establishments have self-service stations for ordering in the store. These are quite useful, but only if sanitized frequently and correctly. If kept properly, they can reduce the spread of infection by reducing face-to-face contact with others, giving customers and employees a sense of security.
Self-service stations are a great way to increase efficiency in restaurants. When it’s integrated with a POS system, it can send orders to the POS system directly instead of needing to be entered manually. These stations also have the flexibility to increase overall order size with upselling prompts. They give customers more control over their ordering experience, which is something many customers desire.
One of the most effective ways to give customers a great experience is to offer outdoor dining. Customers are going stir crazy with no excuse to get out, and this gives them a much-needed opportunity. Often creating an outdoor dining space doesn’t take much effort, as long as the restaurant has some sidewalk or parking lot space. Some businesses even take over small side streets for outdoor seating.
Of course, it’s important to adhere to social distancing guidelines when laying out your outdoor area, such as ensuring tables are six feet apart, and serving staff have masks at their disposal. It also helps make things easy to have the right tableside ordering and payment system available, such as rugged mobile POS tablets.
Tablet Technology for Menu Use at Each Table
For restaurants with limited indoor service, menus can be a bit of a public health concern. Not only do they accumulate harmful substances such as bacteria from being constantly reused, they are wasteful. Along with other reusable objects on the table, it can be difficult to properly sanitize them regularly.
Now, there are healthy and practical alternatives to menus. Many restaurants are choosing to install a tablet at each table that guests can use as more than just a menu. These tablets allow customers to more accurately place their orders, send them directly to the kitchen, and pay their checks all at the tableside.
PPE Policies and Procedures
One of the best, and most non-negotiable, ways to keep customers happy is to keep them safe. It’s essential to have sufficient PPE for all staff members to ensure that business processes are executed cleanly and safely. If enough equipment is kept on hand and staff are behaving responsibly, customers can relax and enjoy their meals.
Touch Dynamic offers a variety of customer-focused point-of-sale solutions. For more information on how we can help you create a better customer experience, contact the experts at Touch Dynamic today!
Contact us today to discuss the many hardware solutions we offer to give your guests an unforgettable experience!