Important Restaurant Technologies That Are Saving BusinessesElla Nordell-Morris
Customers dictate the restaurant experience and the expectations that restaurants work to uphold. Due to many of the lasting effects of COVID-19, customers have been engaging more with technology-centered dining experiences, and restaurants are feeling the pressure to digitalize.
The restaurant industry is constantly changing and, as a result of COVID-19, restaurants have had to adapt quickly to new expectations and norms. We are going to take a look at some of the restaurant technologies that are saving the industry during this time of recovery.
Self-serving kiosks are popping up more and more in restaurants, especially fast food establishments. Though this restaurant technology may seem like an attempt to rid human services from the restaurant business, it actually benefits workers while keeping the customers happy. According to Tillster, over 65% of customers said they would visit a restaurant more often if self-service kiosks were offered.
Self-serving kiosks provide customers an opportunity to look over the entire menu, take their time, and make their own alters to an order. This allows employees to delegate their time to other tasks and ensures that the customer’s order is exactly how they want it, taking your restaurant’s customer service to another level!
Touchscreen Sale Terminals
Unlike self-serving kiosks, touchscreen sale terminals are operated by restaurant employees. This kind of restaurant technology is great for establishments that may not want their ordering process completely up to the customer, but still want to receive the amazing benefits of a digital ordering system.
Touchscreen sale terminals increase ordering efficiency. With easy-to-work software, new employees can learn the technology quickly and existing employees are able to move fast. Customers also enjoy sale terminals, according to Fast Casual, 68% of restaurants diners believe that this technology will improve the restaurant experience. The ordering process is simplified when customers can follow along, instantly pay, and add a tip on the screen, resulting in more orders in a less amount of time, generating more revenue.
The need for digital menus has become increasingly prevalent to account for costs, waste, and customer safety. One of the most popular ways that restaurants are digitizing their menus is through QR codes. According to Beaconstac, 52% of restaurants have already switched to QR code menus. Restaurants are providing customers with QR codes that they can scan with a smartphone camera and view the menu right on their phones!
Restaurants can also provide QR codes that allow customers to order and pay through their own device. Similar to the benefits of self-serving kiosks, with these kinds of QR codes, customers can have control over their order and employees can delegate their time to other tasks. Overall, having QR codes allow restaurants to provide customers with a safe, quick, and efficient dining experience.
Providing delivering options is becoming more popular and necessary for restaurants. Delivery platforms, such as DoorDash, Grub Hub, and Postmates, offer restaurants a new source of income, increasing sales by 20%, according to NPD. When restaurants partner with delivery platforms, they save money, time, and resources.
Though these restaurant technology platforms require fees, the fees of creating your own delivery service are usually higher. Not to mention, creating your own delivery service requires more of the restaurant’s time and resources. With delivery platforms, restaurants are able to add another customer base: those who want restaurant-quality food while remaining at home, and can focus their time and resources to other restaurant responsibilities.
Online Ordering Service
In addition to using delivery platforms, restaurants can benefit immensely from online ordering services. Having a working website with the capability to view a menu, place an order, and pay is becoming a necessity instead of an option. Customers have increasingly shown interest in carry-out options, according to LevelUp, customers that place online orders visit the restaurant 67% more frequently than customers who do not place online orders.
Providing an online ordering option for customers allows for convenience for both the customer and the restaurant. Customers are able to take their time exploring the menu and ordering right from their homes, and restaurants can receive many more orders than they would be able to with dine-in alone.
Kitchen and Logistic Technologies
Kitchen display screens
In the hustle and bustle of a restaurant, paper/printed tickets can get lost or damaged, frustrating both the employees with the unorganization and customers when they do not receive their order. To counteract this problem, many restaurants are beginning to add display screens in their kitchens.
Kitchen display screens (KDS) are environmentally friendly, financially smart, and efficient. Using a KDS reduces the single-use waste accumulated when writing orders on tickets. It is also a one-time purchase, saving your restaurant money in the long run. Accessing all orders on one screen makes it easier for the chefs to stay organized and fulfill all orders on-time and correctly.
Online wholesale marketplaces
Among the advancements restaurants are making to improve the customer experience, there are also many restaurant technologies that are helping with logistics regarding finances and purchasing. Online wholesale marketplaces, like DineMarket, allow restaurants to discover new products and suppliers, save time and money, and pass the savings on to their customers without having to compromise on quality.
DineMarket helps restaurants stay on top of supplier’s products and orders by digitizing a order-guide for ordering and reordering. It is an all-in-one technology that restaurants can view real-time, at-a-glance prices from all suppliers per product for easy price comparisons. By having one, simple interface, restaurants can increase their efficiency by placing, submitting, and tracking orders from all their suppliers.