Restaurant Technology to Enhance Your Business
Restaurants are under a lot of pressure right now. Costly and time-consuming regulations and inspections, global supply chain issues, a shortage of people willing to work and let’s not forget, unrelenting competition.
The astonishing success of American capitalism has brought about not only ubiquitous options in which restaurant customers can pay, but also seemingly endless choices in how they can enjoy their food from these restaurants. Customers have come to expect all restaurants to provide all available options in food delivery such as dining in, out-door seating, take-out and delivery. They also expect to be able to pay with an increasingly wide array of payment methods from Apple Pay to Bitcoin and other cryptocurrency.To compete and stay relevant in this environment, restaurants must modernize and cater to these customer expectations.
How can restaurant owners stay a step ahead of competitors and modern in a way that consumers are expecting and provide a meaningful impact for their staff members?
Fortunately, there has never been a better time to implement cutting edge technology to enhance your business.
Order And Pay From A Tabletop Kiosk
We’ve all seen it before. The line is getting longer as three cashiers try to take orders as fast as they can. The people ordering are still making up their minds, deciding what they want on their burgers.
“Would I rather have a shake or a soda with that?”
Meanwhile the line gets longer and customers get impatient.
The cashiers have been told to do two contradictory tasks: upsell every order and complete every order quickly to keep the line moving along. Facing immense social pressure, the employees at the cashiers keep the line moving as quickly as they can.
Now imagine that restaurant with kiosks at the tables and take out counter. Two of the three cashiers are assisting the back of house staff with the sudden increase in orders, while one server is mingling with the customers answering questions and helping them navigate the ordering screens as needed. The kiosks are automatically upselling every possible item, increasing the average check size by 15% to 20%. Also, through machine learning, the kiosks and tablets have already displayed the most popular (and most profitable) menu items in the exact place on the menu where customers are most likely to see them.
This exact scenario is playing out in restaurants around the world. Sales via self-serve kiosks are expected to exceed $30 billion by 2024. World-wide cultural changes brought about by global reactions to the Corona virus have accelerated consumer acceptance and even preference for using self-ordering technology rather than ordering from a cashier.
Integrating Tablets and Kitchen Display Systems (KDS)
Restaurateurs who are uncomfortable with the idea of a kiosk on the table should consider implementing a ruggedized tablet ordering system. Servers take the tablets to the tables, interact with the customers and allow your customers to order for themselves. In addition to eliminating wasted time reentering handwritten orders and the potential for error inherent in those extra communication steps.
After the customer makes their selection, the order is sent directly to the kitchen eliminating time lost due to a server getting distracted by other customers or another task. Without the unnecessary task of re-entering orders, servers are freed up to focus on the myriad of other tasks vying for their attention.
If servers are entrusting these tablets to your customers, the tablets are going to take a beating. Your staff will drop them. Your customers’ kids will knock them off the table. Somebody will spill something on them. So, the tablets you pick must be rugged and resistant to water damage, drops, and more.
Tablets can also be used at your hostess station. Say goodbye to the dry erase board and the frustrations of the markers going dry right when you need it most. By using technology to better organize your table seating can easily track one of your restaurant’s most important metrics: table turn. Automatically collecting this data allows you to create a more efficient restaurant from front to back.
Finally, when your customers are ready to pay, they expect you to accept the form of payment they use. And your customers are increasingly using digital forms of payment. Apple Pay, Google Pay, Venmo, Paypal and others are growing in popularity with customers due to their ease of use. Also growing in popularity with your customers is the use of cryptocurrency. Modernizing your POS system will allow you to accommodate these customers and keep them coming back.
Your customers are not only becoming more comfortable using technology in their restaurant experience, but they are also coming to expect and require it. By adapting tried and true technologies you can empower your customers, increase average check size and save your staff from performing unnecessary repetitive tasks. Restaurant technology will enhance your business by streamlining your processes from front to back. Lead your customers to the restaurant of tomorrow; they are ready for it.