Self-service kiosks can be a healthy addition to your restaurant POS system. Last year, Software Advice conducted a survey that asked adults what they’d most like to see from a self-service kiosk. Their overall findings on whether or not customers would be willing to use self service kiosks were 54% to 46% percent in favor of utilizing the kiosks.
This is noteworthy since self-service kiosk implementation could mean a boost in restaurant efficiency as well as a reduction in expenses. However, it’s also important to keep in mind that self-service kiosks do not replace traditional customer service or POS systems. Successful self-service kiosk implementation encompasses traditional interaction with customers as well as the digital interaction provided by the kiosk. Additionally, self-service kiosks can take many forms, including standing kiosks and ruggedized tablets in bolted bases at your tables. How you decide to implement them depends on the unique needs of your business.
The top three features that emerged from the Software Advice survey are as follows:
1. Order customization
The ability to customize orders was the number one feature customers— 47% of respondents—wanted from self-service. This included the ability to view menu-item images.
This indicates that order customization is critical to the successful implementation of self-service kiosks. The ability to easily customize and change order items is a huge draw at quick service, fast casual and casual restaurants. This is due mainly to the fact that the order items are not as complex as they might be at a sit-down or fine-dining establishment.
Self-payment mechanisms are ideal for fast-casual restaurants. 50% of participants in Software Advice’s research indicated that they would prefer to handle payments themselves, rather than through a server or other restaurant employee.
Many customers are becoming more wary of sending their credit and debit cards with servers. Implementing a self-service kiosk within a more traditional POS payment setting allows your customers the option to self-pay. Ensuring that your customers are receiving top-notch customer service from your servers as well as allowing them more payment options will guarantee that you will draw repeat business.
3. Flexible payment
Bill-splitting is common at fast casual and fine-dining establishments. Kiosk applications that allow patrons to self-pay also allow patrons to split the bill between party members. This means that non-paying party members won’t need to go through the hassle of remembering cash and digging through wallets and purses to reimburse the party member who paid for their meal.
Additionally, the ability to use multiple forms of payment at a self-service kiosk was rated as highly desirable with 31% of survey respondents favoring this feature. This is unsurprising due to the amount of payment options becoming available to consumers, including mobile wallets, mobile apps, and online credit and debit payments. In fact, the ability to accept multiple forms of payment wouldn’t only benefit self-service kiosks, but also traditional POS configurations.
As demonstrated above, self-service kiosks, when implemented correctly, could potentially increase your customers’ satisfaction, and improve table-turnover and average ticket size. It’s critical to keep in mind however, that successful self-service kiosk implementation must include traditional POS configurations and excellent customer-service.