In this age of ongoing technological disruptions, businesses must remain relevant. They have to be sensitive towards trends that could redefine the markets in which they operate. One industry where two emerging trends are fast taking place is the restaurant industry.
The first trend is consumer-orientated. As consumers become more ensconced in digital technology, they are making more use of mobile ordering apps. The second trend, which, to some extent, is being driven by the first, is that restaurants are turning more towards automation. There is a third trend too – fast home delivery.
Automation through self-service kiosks
The majority of business owners are starting to recognise the need for automation. A survey recently carried out by TD Bank involving 254 multi-unit restaurant owners and operators, concluded that most of the respondents think that increased automation and the use of mobile loyalty apps will impact significantly on their business.
As a result, a growing number of owners are beginning to react to these trends by investing significantly in automated services like self-service kiosks. Many are also investigating mobile apps which give customers rewards as they part with their cash. Other regional chains of restaurants are also thought to be following their lead in the near future.
Branded apps are driving demand
When consumers have specific apps on their smartphones, it makes it that much more likely that they will follow through and order food from the outlets listed. Remote ordering and fast delivery service technologies are in demand, and the sooner the industry responds to this increased demand, the sooner they can cash in on the trends.
Food delivery services thriving
It is the delivery element that is primarily driving the demand for food ordering apps. As the industry acknowledges the trends, there has been a 10% increase in the take-up rate. 52% of those who took part in the survey also reported that delivery accounts for 10% in sales.
As entrepreneurs respond to the increased need, more third-party delivery service providers are jumping on the bandwagon, and as a result, delivery costs are falling.
McDonald’s lead the charge
In terms of automation, McDonald’s is leading the way by installing more and more self-service kiosks in their restaurants. In addition, they also have a mobile app covering geographical areas around their restaurants. It allows customers to order remotely and have their orders delivered in a timely fashion.
Another chain that is taking advantage of automation is Sakae Sushi, the Singapore sushi chain. They provide tablet devices in their restaurants that customers can make use of for placing their orders. The chain maintains that this allows more effective use of their workforce.
The race is clearly on. The quicker that restaurants embrace the change and respond with new apps and automation, the sooner they can benefit from increased sales.