Restaurant Technology: What’s Coming?

Technology is evolving faster and faster each year.  If you are not keeping up with the latest, your restaurant could suffer.  Read on to discover the restaurant technology that is trending in 2017 and the potential benefits of getting on board!

Restaurant Technology: What are the Potential Benefits?

Digital Menu Boards

According to restaurantbusinessonline.com, digital menu boards are finding their way into more and more restaurants.  There are many good reasons to use these new digital boards, including:

  1. Digital menu boards are appealing to the eye.  Restaurants can use high resolution images of their offerings, and entice customers to buy.
  2. Provides the ability to update all the menu boards simultaneously with changes going live immediately.
  3. Offers more flexibility to showcase regular or limited time/seasonal offerings.

Kiosks

Also from restaurantbusinessonline.com, ordering kiosks are becoming more and more popular in fast and fast-casual restaurants.  This trend does not show any signs of slowing as customers recognize the benefits as well.  Among the top benefits are:

  1. Reduction in labor costs.  No need to have a staff member take orders or run a cash register.
  2. Offer customers a better ordering experience.  Guests are able to customize their orders and there is less risk of miscommunication.  Order accuracy can be improved.
  3. Higher check averages due to ability to customize and upselling opportunities.
  4. “Frequency lift”- people come more often because the experience has been made easier

Online and Mobile Ordering

Online and mobile ordering is gaining traction according to an article by toasttab.com.  Today’s customers seek convenience wherever they can find it, and many are finding it here.  See why below:

  1. Customers can see all of the menu options at once
  2. Bill is immediately updated as items are added and removed
  3. Free up staff members to take care of more crucial tasks
  4. Provides the ability to for customers to place their order from anywhere at any time.
  5. Better channel for upselling than the phone.  Photos of food items are more enticing.

Mobile Apps and Payment

Along with online and mobile ordering, mobile apps and payment are becoming more popular as people try to save time, according to toasttab.com.  The top benefits are listed below:

  1.  Mobile apps tend to be more user-intuitive than online ordering pages
  2.  App-based loyalty programs are more engaging and do not get lost like the old stamp cards of the past
  3. Good channel to notify customers about new deals, coupons, menu items, events, and etc..
  4. Allows for a convenient way for customers to place and cancel reservations.  Does not take up staff time
  5. Mobile payment is faster than paying in cash and way faster than the chip cards
  6. Mobile card readers on the tables speed up payment process and free up tables

Now that you know the latest restaurant technology and benefits, its time to get on board! But, before you jump headlong into any of these new technologies, consider the following from restobiz.com: “Since new features and technology are evolving so quickly, restaurant owners should choose technology that is regularly updated at no additional charge and that can be integrated with other programs such as accounting or scheduling”  You don’t want your technology choices to paint you into a corner!

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