How Restaurant Owners Can Use Automation to Boost Their Sales
All industries face challenges during their day-to-day running of them, the food and beverage industry being no exception. A rapidly emerging way for businesses to face these challenges is by using technology to meet customers’ changing needs, with a whopping 76% of restaurants using automation as of 2022.
From AI drive-thrus and self-ordering kiosks to robotic fry cooks and automated inventory management, restaurant automation has come a long way. It is only expected to be taken to new heights in the future. But this begs the question, why should restaurant owners turn to restaurant automation?
One of the main reasons that restaurant automation is so popular is due to the many benefits that it provides, one of the biggest being increased sales. Since restaurants are notorious for having a tight margin for profit, owners need to ensure that their business is working at maximum efficiency to give them a chance to achieve the best yield possible. We outline how you can use automation to do this below:
One of the most prevalent restaurant automation tools is the implementation of self-ordering kiosks, as found in McDonald’s, KFC, and many more restaurants. A self-ordering kiosk is a freestanding structure that enables customers to place an order without engaging with a staff member, reducing wait time, minimizing labor costs, increasing customer satisfaction, allowing upselling opportunities,and ensuring order accuracy.
Alternatively, restaurants could use a mobile application like KioskBuddy, which allows an iPad or similar tablet device to be turned into a self-service kiosk through a payment processing platform. From making instant updates to their menus in real-time to performance analytics, apps like these can help streamline restaurant operations in various ways. Consider visiting their website to see how they could benefit your restaurant automation today.
Table Reservation Software
Have you ever wanted to go out for dinner but needed more energy (or confidence!) to pick up your telephone and call a restaurant to make a reservation? Thanks to recent additions to the restaurant automation scene, you no longer have to, as you can make reservations through table reservation software instead.
As the name suggests, table reservation software allows customers to reserve a table at your restaurant using a third-party provider or built-in website tool which can filter by date, time, and service. Using one of these can be incredibly beneficial since it eliminates the chance of human error, creates a more accurate FOH floor plan, simplifies table management, and much more.
Lousy food, staff with horrible attitudes, long wait times, and many other factors can quickly turn a restaurant experience sour for diners. You can minimize complaints about the latter by implementing call buttons in your restaurant, which allow customers to ‘call’ a waiter without having to wait for them to notice them naturally.
No matter how well-organized your restaurant’s floor plan is, there will always be blind spots that having call buttons can successfully cover. These are particularly useful for establishments that cover multiple floors or have a modern floor plan, as it means that every customer will be noticed, so anyone complaining about wait times won’t have a leg to stand on!
Automated Cooking Process
Robotics are extremely popular among businesses that wish to automate their processes. Thanks to technological advances, you can find robots to help you pack orders, lift heavy items, sort items on a conveyor belt, and even cook you a tasty meal!
Since cooking can be repetitive, robotics have been introduced to the kitchen since they are handy for producing consistent results. Not only do they produce good results, but they are also beneficial for improving hygiene standards, reducing the cost of kitchen staff, working more efficiently, and many other benefits.
Although automated cooking processes are still a relatively new development in the restaurant automation world, you will likely not have crossed all the options currently available. They are getting better every day, hinting that they will become more widespread in the future.
Digital Menu Boards
Another popular piece of restaurant automation is digital menu boards. As you can probably determine from its name, digital menu boards help replace traditional menus since they can be accessed through any handheld device via a QR code or viewed by the customer as soon as they walk into the premises.
Due to their popularity, you can find a variety of digital menu boards on the market to suit the overall theme of your restaurant. These range from in-store LED displays, mobile food delivery apps, website-based, social media-based, QR-enabled, and many more.
Additionally, digital menu boards are more accessible to adjust than traditional paper-based menus since traditional ones would have to be reprinted. In contrast, digital ones can be edited via software. Moreover, they are also easier to decorate if you have a special promotion coming up or a holiday, which is impossible to do with paper-based menus.