Providing customers with relevant information via interactive menus or creative carousels is not an element of surprise anymore, but an expectation.

 

As per the National Restaurant Association’s 2017 Industry Outlook, 80% of millennials have used restaurant Wi-Fi in the past 12 months, and 20% of consumers said they would instead use technology than interact with staff. 

 

As mentioned in part I of the blog series, incorporating technology-centric perks to influence higher levels of convenience will propel a restaurant to the next level. Digital ecosystems that tie independent technologies such as Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR), voice-based ordering, mobile powered curbside pick-up, among others could help restaurants in anticipating changes in customer behavior and tackling customer demands.

 

Keeping in line with the philosophies of the fast-casual restaurants to reduce customer effort, we have listed out four essential focus areas that brands could use to navigate today's technology-centric environment.

 

Mobile First – 

 

Introducing tech-centric means for the customer to engage with your restaurant will help in optimizing customization, eliminating queuing, and enhancing the restaurant visit. Asking your customers to download an app might be an inconvenience but having an option to receive an SMS text or messages on Instagram or Facebook might benefit. Having mobile strategies for marketing such as push notifications, contactless payment systems, in-app promotions, rewards programs and online delivery platforms will provide you with a reason to engage with your customers and create positive experiences.

 

Digital Drive-Thru –  

 

With more than half of QSR’s revenue coming from drive-thrus, introducing digital signages, voice-assisted drive-thru ordering and drive-in/curbside pick-up with mobile app services will give you the edge. Steering away from traditional static menu boards, digital menu boards with moving images help in grasping attention and furthering customer spend. Conversational Artificial Intelligence (AI) tools could serve multiple functions at once including, segmenting through menus, upselling, and raising awareness of an on-going promotion.

 

In-Restaurant Experience – 

 

Tapping into data-driven tools could foster innovation in your business. From handheld point-of-sale systems and door open/close sensors to self-ordering smart kiosks and dwell time analytics, businesses could gain comprehensive customer data such as purchase history, satisfaction, likes/dislikes, and various other insights to act on it. Bringing in more technology into your restaurant space such as tablets or car dashboard to place food order will help you engage with customers in a more relevant and personalized manner and provide you with the information you need to make proactive decisions.

 

Technology Integration – 

 

Upgrading technology systems and building a connected restaurant with complete monitoring, tracking and analyzing solutions will support in identifying trends and understanding factors that are driving sales. Technology will not only assist in extracting context and intent from human interactions or performing customer sentiment and behavioral analysis (happy, sad, neutral) to discover opportunities, but it will enable you to monitor every single appliance and maintenance system. It will present you with the ability to avoid equipment downtime, manage staff behavior, handle additional traffic, and improve conversion rates.

 

Gear up to Offer Digitally-Powered Guest Experiences

 

Adopting intelligent sensor technology and using cognitive intelligence, HARMAN (a Samsung Company), is helping restaurants reimagine their guest experiences. 

 

Combining the latest advancements in technology and design, we are raising the digital bar on the inside as well as the outside. By partnering with a service-oriented company, backed with extensive experience, in developing custom platforms and intelligent devices/solutions, you will not only meet your customers’ digital expectations but will transform your overall restaurant experience. 

 

If you would like additional information on how we build connected restaurants or wish to schedule a meeting, please feel free to reach out to us here or on LinkedIn/Twitter.