Technology helps foodservice retailers take on their greatest challenges: managing sales volume and controlling food costs.
Building and Maintaining Sales.
Tableservice (full-service) and limited-service restaurants can leverage technology to attract new customers and maintain existing customers through end-to-end restaurant solutions that optimize both the front-of-the-house
Technology can increase sales with menus, self-service ordering, build-your-own/order customization, and promotions technology. It can also streamline ordering with point-of-sale (POS) integration of kitchen displays
which can automatically queue orders and provide recipe time and food preparation instructions, greatly cutting down on labor costs, paperwork, and errors.
Ordering and delivery technology enables sales by making customer, delivery, takeout, online, and mobile ordering more convenient. It gives more control and options to the customer while also automating many functions, reducing labor costs, and errors. It also provides new and additional promotional opportunities to foodservice retailers.
Back-office integration with POS, ordering and delivery technology, as well as inventory and accounting solutions, enables managers to optimize inventory and ordering, ensuring that popular ingredients are always in stock.
Take-Out and Delivery. Increasing Sales with Convenience.
According to the National Restaurant Association (NRA), curbside takeout and delivery is just as important for tableservice (family, casual, and fine dining) restaurants as it is for limited-service (quick-service and fast casual) restaurants.
Why takeout and delivery? The answer is convenient ordering and easy access to a restaurant’s menu. Foodservice retailers can look to technology to deliver easy ways to interact with a menu, enabling tableservice and limitedservices restaurants to attract new customers and sales. According to the 2016 NRA survey, the top five reasons for choosing a tableservice or limited-service restaurant are, not surprisingly, menu driven with 23 and 50 percent of consumers accessing menus from their mobile phones at least weekly and monthly, respectively.
What makes a customer come back? “Eighty-two percent of adults say they often pick a tableservice restaurant that they have been to in the past and liked.” – NRA, 2016 Restaurant Industry Forecast
Restaurant operators continue to view attracting new customers as their greatest challenge but retaining customers is also important. How important? According to the NRA, repeat customers equate to a median of 60 percent of sales for tableservice restaurants.
To attract and retain customers, restaurant operators diversify their menus, introducing new and seasonal offerings. Technology can help restaurant operators to keep their menu up-to-date and easily accessible to new and returning customers.
Controlling Labor Costs.
The labor market is changing. The restaurant industry’s workforce is being reshaped by today’s economic and demographic realities. Current and future increases in minimum wages, the changing face of the of the workforce, with teenagers representing a shrinking share, and the economic recovery, is making it harder for restaurant owners to find and retain talent while controlling costs.
Restaurant owners can offset the pressures to their labor costs by letting technology take care of many repetitive tasks, such as taking and passing orders to the back of the house. That time can then be used to control, prepare, and deliver quality orders.
Controlling Food Costs.
Restaurants can leverage on-site and back-office technology to help control food inventory and recipe costs. On-site technology can help manage food inventory through digital prep station displays, special promotions, and a centralized recipe database. Integration with back-office technology can help to control ingredient and recipe costs while also managing foodservice vendor orders.
“Many restaurants lose profit from the cook line due to incorrect portioning, waste, and unrecorded sales.” – NRA, To control food costs, start at the cook line
The Consumer’s Growing Acceptance of Foodservice Technology
Regardless of the technology, the NRA reports that 23% of consumers are saying that the availability of technology options is an important factor in choosing a restaurant and the percentage increases to 32% for the 18-34 age group and limited-service restaurants. Over 40% of this same age demographic (18-34) and 30% of the 35-44 age group have used an electronic ordering kiosk at a fast food place with almost 80% and over 60%, respectively, saying they are willing to use this technology in the future.
Discover the Key Solutions
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