Food service is only one part of a restaurant’s business. Arguably the biggest aspect of a restaurant’s success is customer experience, because going to a restaurant is not just about food quality. It’s also about how the customer feels at all touchpoints of their journey throughout the restaurant. There’s no doubt that technology is only improving that customer experience. Today’s climate and demographic changes, such as the millennial consumer, are increasing the demand for that technology in restaurants.
Maintain Timely Service Delivery— Everyone appreciates speedy service, but millennials are particularly keen on waiting as little time as possible for their meal. Restaurants can shorten wait times by making sure their patrons use technology, including tablets at the table, to place an order. Surveys show that millennials are 6% more likely to return to a restaurant that uses technology, such as apps, and will spend 20% more per visit. Unfortunately, many restaurants are not maintaining a high standard. About 80% of customers have experienced slow payment processing and poor in-store Wi-Fi. When these glitches occur, customers lose confidence in a restaurant’s brand and are 25% less likely to visit that establishment again.
Chatbots Are The New Waiters— Chatbots are not new to the restaurant industry, but they are becoming more ubiquitous across companies. It’s estimated that about 85% of business-customer relationships will be without human interaction by 2020. This trend toward electronic communication is about improving the speed and convenience for customers, especially millennials. Bots can communicate on multiple interfaces and can even take delivery orders by simply using an emoji from Facebook Messenger. Chatbots eliminate possible mistakes, helping to make reservations, ordering food, answering customer questions, and processing payments. In addition, this technology can remember a customer’s previous meal choices and make future recommendations based on these preferences. Chatbots never tire of these tasks and open the possibilities for extended restaurant operations and greater profits.
Consider Alternative Food Options— Across generations, Americans are eating less meat, particularly red meat. For millennials, the move away from animal products is even more striking. Nearly 80% of millennials report regularly eating vegan meat. Globally, 70% of the world’s population is reducing or eliminating their consumption of this food group. For restaurants, technology is opening the possibilities for greater food options to meet the demands of these shifting taste buds. Eco-friendly lab-grown meats, or clean meats, are not available everywhere, but they are getting closer to store shelves. And fast-food giant Burger King is test marketing its “Impossible Whopper.” The chain’s meatless burger is created to taste just like meat. Until the time when lab-grown meats become mainstream, investigate traditional vegan and vegetarian alternatives to satisfy this growing customer demand.
Restaurants understand the importance of exceptional customer experience, and more and more successful organizations are looking toward technology solutions to satisfy the demands of a growing millennial population. It’s about reaching the next level in customer experience to keep up with greater expectations for speed and convenience. Will your restaurant be in the forefront?
Restaurant Magic Software has been providing advanced software solutions to the restaurant and hospitality industry for over 20 years. The robust Data Central Management Suite, the flagship product, is a powerful and flexible application that takes advantage of the latest technology trends to offer premier processing and analytics. With advanced forecasting, predictive scheduling and mobile technologies, Data Central has something for every problem. To learn more about Restaurant Magic Software and its products, call us at 1(800) 933-4711 or visit the website at RestaurantMagic.com.