With the rise of ghost kitchens, some companies are tackling the ghost kitchen model’s challenges head-on for restaurateurs who are struggling to stay profitable in the current business climate.
As these companies purchase facilities and outfit them with the essential commercial grade appliances, they must also give careful thought to the restaurant POS technology chosen. The restaurant management software and hardware selected must streamline ghost kitchen operations as much as possible.
The ghost kitchen company is responsible for choosing technology to address tenets’ pain points as much as possible. Pain points like:
- Dual or multiple operations per kitchen
- No face-to-face payment processing
- And more
Discover eight must-have features for cloud kitchen point of sale.
Online Ordering and Delivery Management Software
Whether third-party or custom, a ghost kitchen needs a seamless online ordering solution for desktop and mobile. Choose a technology provider with the flexibility to integrate with third-party apps and accommodate custom solutions for delivery management. Using a third-party option like DoorDash or Uber Eats ensures access to a large market. It’s also simple to install and doesn’t require a large initial investment.
Forward-thinking companies should also explore custom solutions that integrate with digital display and barcode scanners to complete a full, delivery-only kitchen solution.
Besides online ordering and delivery management software, ghost kitchens need a reliable impact printer for kitchen use that produces heat and humidity resistant, easy-to-read tickets fast. The SP742 Impact Printer from Star Micronics is explicitly built to work in environments where heat and humidity can erode the type on the kitchen orders, making it the perfect addition to any kitchen, ghost or non. For kitchens where heat and moisture aren’t an issue, consider our reliable mC-Print3 receipt printer.
Ghost kitchens also require a reliable sticky label printer and tamper-proof labels to go with their delivery-only operations. Star Micronics’s TSP654IISK thermal printer for sticky paper works with liner-free labeling applications, producing labels that stick to virtually any surface and that can be easily reapplied. Our tamper-proof labels are also a must-have to keep to-go bags and boxes properly sealed and secure.
Scalability, Reliability, and Flexibility
Scalability, reliability, and flexibility are crucial. For startup delivery operation, a simple tablet is often all that is necessary. From this host, the kitchen can receive the order and define preparation time and order delivery. However, once the operation is functional, many accessories are necessary for a smooth process. Tablets do not have ports to support the connectivity, and therefore a technology connecting hub is needed. The mC-Print supports a USB hub where many operation-streamlining peripherals, such as those listed below, can be connected.
Additionally, Bluetooth connectivity and hardwired tethered Ethernet connections, such as Star Micronics’ SteadyLAN® provide ultra-reliable internet connectivity.
Provide your restaurateur tenants with scanners so they can better monitor their meal preparation process. Restaurateurs simply scan the order at every stage of order prep. Armed with this data, restaurateurs can give more accurate delivery time estimates to customers. More precise delivery estimates mean happier customers and a more efficient cloud kitchen operation.
Digital display is an excellent way for tenets to understand better what action must be taken with commands like accept, cancel, and delay order. It also provides next steps, such as Press #1 for the next step, or press #2 for order ready. Star’s digital display fits perfectly on top of the printer for a smaller footprint.
A buzzer will ensure that chefs know precisely when a new order comes into their kitchen. An ideal buzzer will enhance printer functionality by offering a better way to alert the tenet of incoming orders and more information about order type, source, and urgency. Choose a buzzer with high sound quality and speech recording capability for full understanding. A buzzer needs to be compatible with Windows, iOS, and Android SDKs for future flexibility. Users can choose from various sound types and volumes, and ISVs can assign individual custom sounds to different order types and playback sounds sent from a host device.
Bump Bar Connectivity
Bump bars are a crucial part of kitchen operations, bringing convenience and flexibility to the commercial kitchen. A small keyboard allows kitchen staffers to see and shift orders in the queue if necessary, bump bars work to decrease service times and efficiency, order accuracy and improve communication between staff. Any hardware and software you choose should have the ability to integrate with bumper technology so that operations are organized and visible.
Since many ghost kitchen operations are opening as a virtual restaurant, the entire customer experience is centered around delivery service. The to-go bag or box delivered to the customer’s door is the only tangible representation of the business; they can’t rely on their physical storefront to enforce their brand. Offering each cloud kitchen tenet the opportunity to create custom printed promotions that can be dropped into each to-go box is crucial to building their brand.
Printed promotions can include special offers or coupons for the next meal, customer service surveys with QR codes, samples of other dishes, or even links to the full menu. With PromoPRNT, tenets can create printed promotions that will drive customer experience and build loyalty.
It is crucial to choose restaurant management solutions that will help your tenets optimize their business. Ghost kitchens operate slightly differently from traditional ones and therefore require specific solutions to ensure their success.
Star Micronics’s hardware is perfect for ghost kitchen operations. We provide solutions that solve every day IT challenges to every day delivery-only kitchen challenges. If you’re ready to entice tenets to your facility with top-of-the-line technology that will meet their day-to-day business needs, connect with one of our distributor partners today.
Brianna Moriarty is the Partner Development Manager at Star Micronics where she works with channel-partners to grow their business and develop new markets. Brianna has a background in marketing and uses this to help VARs and ISVs to establish a go-to-market strategy and create co-marketing campaigns. She enjoys following the latest social media marketing trends and creating content for retailers and SMBs.