Back-of-the-House vs. Front-of-the-House Receipt Printers for Restaurants

Restaurants are busy work environments where mistakes can quickly snowball into kitchen backups and long wait times for tables. A restaurant POS system with both front-of-the-house and back-of-the-house printers reduces the need for staff to decipher someone’s handwriting —which can mean fewer mistakes, quicker service, shorter lines, and more table turns.

However, restaurant printers are only effective if you choose the right ones. Receipt printers for restaurants aren’t usually “one size fits all.” The best printer for your kitchen might be different than the printer that sits on the counter in the dining room.

Back-of-the-House Printers: Impact Printers

The back-of-the-house is where heat, spills, particles, and steam can damage a printer to the point where it stops working—causing work to slow down or, even worse, forcing staff to handwrite tickets.

Choose an impact printer that uses bond paper that can withstand the hazards of a busy kitchen. Impact printers are designed so a printhead makes impact with an ink ribbon, transferring the message onto the receipt paper. The advantage of the ribbon is that two colors can be used, black for orders and red for modifiers. Bond paper will withstand humidity and the extreme temperatures found in hot kitchens and freezing cold storage. In addition, impact printers are loud and help to notify cooks when orders are coming in a rowdy kitchen environment.

In modern kitchens where heat and oil are well-controlled, direct thermal printers can also be used. However, they also need some very specific features, such as splash resistance, warning buzzers, and an insect-proof design, as well as some other, more optional features.

Star Micronics’ impact printer recommended for all your back-of-the-house needs includes:

  • SP700: This fast, two-color printer is built to withstand heat and humidity while offering clear and crisp type, clamshell design for easy paper loading and an embedded power supply for space efficiency. The SP700 BTi supports iPad®, iPhone®, and iPod touch® devices in addition to Android™ and Windows devices.

 

 

 

 

Front-of-the-House Printers: Thermal Printers

In the front-of-the-house, aesthetics are important and the hazards are fewer.  Thermal printers are sleekly designed and have a compact footprint, so they don’t look like electronic clutter sitting out in the open. A thermal printer is quiet and uses a printhead to apply heat that transfers characters and images to receipt paper and labels.

These receipt printers for restaurants are perfectly suited for front-of-house printing needs like customer receipts, because they have a higher resolution than impact printers, so they print crisp, clear images. For restaurants that want a nicer looking receipt, or want to print coupons and marketing information, thermal printers are the right choice.

For the front-of-the-house, Star Micronics recommends:

  • TSP100III printer line: High-speed printing of 250 mm/second and a guillotine auto cutter helps your staff do their jobs as quickly as possible. The printers are easy to set up, are Cloud Ready, and compatible with AllReceipts, and they includes the futurePRNT Receipt Enhancement Tool.

 

 

 

 

  • TSP654II and TSP654IIResto: Easy to set-up and extremely fast, the TSP654II is extremely reliable, offers drop-in-and-print paper loading, and prints 300 mm/second. The TSP654II-Resto version is certified by “Revenu Quebec” to comply with the tax laws in the Canadian province. The TSP654II is available with WebPRNT for printing from web-based  applications and, it comes equipped for online ordering applications with cloudPRNT.

 

 

 

Front-of-the-House and Back-of-the-House

Star Micronics has created a state-of-the-art thermal printer recommended for all your front- and back-of-the-house needs.

  • mC-Print3: This fast, front-loading and front-exiting printer is one of the smallest printers in its class. It is the perfect solution for any restaurant. It comes with multiple connectivity options such as USB, Lightning USB, Bluetooth, and Ethernet, allowing it to connect to any PC, tablet or cloud-based software application.

In addition to its flat top design, it also includes a splash-proof enclosure to protect the printer from hazards such as water, debris, or insects when used in harsh environments or outdoors. Gain all of the benefits of a thermal receipt printer in the back-of-the-house with the mC-Print3.

 

 

 

Selecting a receipt printer for the front- vs. back-of-the-house restaurant environment doesn’t have to be a difficult decision. Typically, for restaurant kitchens and environments with extreme heat or cold, look for an impact printer built to withstand spills, humidity, dust particles and more. Unless, of course, you’re purchasing a Star Micronics mC-Print3, a versatile, sleek, and fast little printer that will handle both front-of-the-house and back-of-the-house applications with ease. For more information, please visit www.starmicronics.com.

RetailNOW 2018 Recap

This year, RetailNOW 2018 ran from August 5th to 8th at the Gaylord Opryland Resort & Convention center in Nashville, Tennessee. In this post, we’ll do a short recap of some of the trends and our own experience of it at Star Micronics and our growing ecosystem of partners.

RetailNOW was buzzing this year on Twitter under the hashtag #RetailNOW2018. It’s held by RSPA, a trade association comprised of resellers, ISVs, manufacturers, payment processors, distributors, and other POS and tech ecosystem participants.

Star Micronics had some exciting new products to showcase such as our mCollection including new printers and scales, which got a fair amount of attention at RSPA.

RetailNOW is an important event for POS tech since it combines resellers with both hardware and software ecosystems. The point of sale industry is being challenged right now with channel sustainability and thus the role RSPA plays is crucial.

Star Micronics’ booth was #803 and our set-up looked like this:

 

We held a contest where those who entered could win an Amazon Echo Spot. Our new mCollection series was well received, especially our scales.

With over 160 exhibitors and a packed agenda, RetailNOW 2018 was the ideal event for us to showcase our mCollection series that has been designed with the latest tech to deliver products that are especially compact in size, sleek, and offer the easiest setup in the industry with a reliable and remarkable user experience. Where our mCollection truly shines is in connectivity–each printer has multiple connectivity options including Bluetooth, CloudPRNT, Ethernet, and of course, lightning USB and traditional USB options.

 

RSPA speakers had warm receptions that looked like this:

                          Image credit: RSPA Twitter.

The inaugural RSPA women of the year in 2018 was Abby Sorensen. On the ISV insights panel, the importance of finding partners who need your software but who also have the same DNA was mentioned. The RetailNOW 2018 event also included golf, free head-shots at the photo booth on the show floor, and many other perks. Many speakers added value around the best practices for ISVs, VARs, and Vendors.

 

Tips for Value Added Resellers (VARs)

POS VARs are evolving how they see the emerging ecosystem:

                       Image credit: Jim Roddy on Twitter

RSPA is really committed to providing year-round education on topics relevant to its community with everything from tech boot camps to regional events and global expansion. VARs are also increasingly relying on automation tools to streamline their business.

                  Image credit: Jim Roddy on Twitter

VARs know what works for them in terms of the top lead generation tools. For many of them, product catalogs, software overview videos and educational content such as buyers guides, e-books, lists, and live chats work really nicely. RetailNOW 2018 was full of educational content for VARs, Vendors, and those in related POS tech industries.

 

Finding the Right Mobile Application and Printer for Your Restaurant

 

Finding the Right Mobile Application and Printer for Your Restaurant

When owning and operating a restaurant or food service business, it’s important that your customers are always left satisfied, whether that be by the food, wait service, or speed. What many restaurateurs do not realize is that this often goes beyond serving a good plate of food and having an attentive staff, but it all connects to your backend operations. Food service and restaurant businesses need to make sure that they have a solid point of sale system that keeps everything running smoothly and efficiently.

Fourleaf and Star Micronics offer restaurant solutions for businesses of all sizes with top performance. Fourleaf is a restaurant point of sale (POS) application that allows management and staff to manage orders from start to finish using an iPad. Restaurant and food service business choose Fourleaf and Star for its mobility, always-on functionality, and outstanding user and customer experience.

Mobility

Smaller restaurants, cafes, and food trucks need mobility options that will allow them to take an order and accept payment from anywhere, at any time. With mobile ordering and payment becoming more popular options when it comes to food service, it is important for business owners to accommodate to the new generation of consumers by offering more mobile options. Fourleaf allows restaurants to seamlessly accept mobile orders and payments. Operating on iPads, Fourleaf’s POS solution enables food service businesses to go completely mobile using one of Star’s mPOS hardware options including the SM-L200 portable printer, mPOP, or mC-Print3.

Always-on Connectivity

With Fourleaf and Star Micronics, restaurateurs never have to worry about devices being disconnected, or losing payment or transaction information. The benefit of Fourleaf’s real-time sales and inventory updates is that business owners and managers are always connected and able to see updates whether they are in the restaurant or relaxing at home. And with Star Micronics’ new mC-Print3, they never have to worry about losing connectivity with the printer’s HUB interface with Bluetooth, USB, lightning USB, and Ethernet options. Not only does the mC-Print3 offer multiple connectivity options, but it also allows restaurants to connect multiple devices to be used all at the same time while boasting both spill- and insect-proof technology, making it ideal for kitchen and restaurant environments. For mid-size and large-scale restaurants, always-on and always-connected functionality is a must.

User and Customer Experience

The most important aspect of running a successful restaurant business is providing an exceptional customer experience. In order to do this, staff must be knowledgeable of the menu and the back-of-house operations including how food is prepared, wait times in the kitchen, and most importantly, the point of sale. Providing your staff with a user-friendly POS system helps set-up them—and your business—up for success, especially in a large-scale and busy restaurant environment. Fourleaf POS offers an easy-to-use and intuitive system that makes it easy for staff to take orders, print receipts, and track loyalty. This is also great for the customer experience because they receive excellent service and rewards for frequenting your business. Star’s TSP143III printer helps staff to quickly print receipts and credit card slips and offers an aesthetically pleasing printing solution for your business.

The bottom line is that no matter what size or type of restaurant or food service business you run, it is important to have modern and functional technology to help your staff get the job done and provide your customers with a 5-star experience every time. Whether you own a food truck or a steakhouse, Fourleaf and Star Micronics have the solutions to help you succeed.

3 Reasons Why Restaurants Should Allow Customers to Order Online

Online ordering and delivery are so convenient that more and more people are going online and, in a few clicks, having meals delivered to their door. Online ordering and delivery are so convenient that more and more people are going online and, in a few clicks, having meals delivered to their door. According to banking analysts Cowen, delivery will grow to a $76 billion industry by 2022. CNBC reports that online orders comprise half of all deliveries, with millennials and the 35-44 age group leading the pack among diners who are taking advantage of online ordering apps and services.

Online Ordering Makes Sense for Your Restaurant

Although most restaurants take phone orders, it’s a good idea to have an alternate ordering method so people won’t get a busy signal or wait on hold for too long. Online ordering also means the phone won’t be ringing as often, taking staff away from other tasks and making the atmosphere more pleasant for dine-in customers.

Online ordering allows diners to enter their orders online through the restaurant’s website or app and designate whether it’s for pickup, delivery, or dine-in. Online ordering solutions also enable the customer to pay with a credit card before the order is prepared, and it streamlines workflows by sending orders directly to the kitchen. Implementing an online ordering system means a better customer service experience for patrons and allows you to gather their contact information for future marketing efforts.

Online ordering is a great way to boost revenue and attract new customers. The addition of Amazon Eats and Seamless are making it easier than ever for restaurants to introduce online ordering. If you haven’t already, here are three reasons why your customers should be able to point, click, and eat:

  1. Increased sales and larger orders

Restaurants that introduce online ordering increase their takeout revenue, on average, by 30%. For small restaurants or ones with limited hours, adding online ordering and delivery generates an additional revenue stream without impacting your dine-in customers.

Online ordering encourages larger orders by giving customers extra time to look through the menu and discover new items they would like to try. Diners are in control of the ordering process and they can take their time reading the menu without feeling rushed, securely process their payments, and never get a busy signal.

  1. Improved order accuracy

Taking phone orders means an employee must be able to clearly hear the customer on the phone, accurately and legibly write down an order, and then input it into the point of sale (POS) system. Sometimes the employee may not hear the order correctly or make mistakes while entering it into the POS terminal. Removing these steps means less opportunity for errors and a reduction in the amount of time and resources wasted remaking orders prepared incorrectly.

 

  1. Expand your customer base

More of your customers will seek out restaurants with online ordering, so it’s important to have every option available—phone, online and ordering app. According to a survey by the National Restaurant Association, 61% of people said they consider delivery and takeout options important for table service restaurants.  The experts at QSR Web reported that online ordering is outpacing dine-in patrons by 300%. If reservations at your restaurant are hard to get, or there are only a few tables, online ordering makes it easy for people to satisfy their craving or try it for the first time quickly and easily.

Restaurants are preparing more meals for take-out than they are serving to on-premises customers, so make sure they can place their orders using the technology they want. Online ordering is the key to drawing in new customers and increasing revenue.

How to Find the Best POS Solution for Your Restaurant

Star Micronics and FOURLEAF offer the perfect solution for any restaurant POS

Starting a restaurant business or a coffee shop has never been easy for people who don’t have experience. Such business requires large spending – from purchasing and investing in all necessary equipment to over hiring staff and releasing monthly salaries. Consequently, these have direct negative effects on a restaurant’s profitability. Last but not least, traditional systems cause difficulty for owners when they want to quickly expand their business.

Contrary to popular belief, restaurant point of sale is not a one size fits all models. In the restaurant industry, you’ll find large to mid-sized sit-down restaurants, mom and pop shops with 5 to10 tables, cafes, fast-casual, food trucks, and more. Finding the right point of sale system for your restaurant really depends on the type of business your running.

1. Pop-up Restaurants & Food Trucks  

For a pop-up restaurant or food truck scenario, you will want a point of sale that allows you to be mobile. Tablet POS or mPOS are very popular in this market because the mobility of the tablet or mobile device allows users to take up less space and take the POS outside of the pop-up or food truck to take orders and process payments of those waiting in line. With this type of mobile solution, you will want a receipt printer with the same mobility. A portable receipt printer that can hook right to your belt strap is ideal for these pop-up and food truck environments because they are lightweight, compact, and can print receipts from anywhere, at any time.

2. mPOP

In cafes and smaller restaurants, mobility is still preferred, but you will need a POS system that is more static. The mPOP allows restaurateurs to still utilize the mobility of a tablet or smartphone while having a set POS check-out station with a small footprint. This is the perfect solution for smaller restaurants or cafes that have a lower cash flow and want to maintain an aesthetically pleasing counter space.

3. TSP100III

For larger restaurants, you will need a more robust solution that can withstand busy periods with a high volume of orders being transmitted and receipts being printed. The TSP100III is the best printer for this scenario with a tethered USB connection for Apple iPad® devices that simultaneously facilitate data communication to the printer and charges the mobile device. The TSP100III is also offered with WLAN and Bluetooth connectivity option to print receipts from anywhere in the restaurant.

The FOURLEAF POS App aims to connect owners to their business 24/7. Help owners to track their sales income in real time and it is specially designed from fundamental concept to be an online restaurant POS system.

Star and FOURLEAF strive to help restaurant owners to track their inventory and be able to send wireless orders to the kitchen within a fraction of a second.

More info is available at:

www.fourleaf.life
www.facebook.com/afourelaf
www.twitter.com/fourleaf_app

4 Features to look for in the Ultimate Restaurant Kitchen Printer

Image result for busy kitchen

Choosing the ultimate restaurant kitchen printer doesn’t have to be so intimidating. Follow these four tips and you’ll be golden.

Your restaurant kitchen is a busy work environment where there isn’t a large margin for error—one mistake means spending time and resources remaking dishes, which could cause a lengthy kitchen backup if it happens several times during a busy shift.

If your wait staff is handwriting tickets for the kitchen, you’re asking for trouble. Meal prep workers who can’t read a server’s handwriting have two choices: guess what the ticket says or spend time asking the server, which can create a ripple effect of extra waiting, starting in the kitchen.

The extra seconds spent trying to decipher someone’s chicken scratch—or worse, having to ask them—can add up to extra minutes that people wait for food or drinks, which means additional time at the table and ultimately, longer wait times for people to be seated. More waiting means less table turns, which will cost you money. However, a restaurant kitchen printer can help recoup wasted minutes by cutting down food prep time and resources spent correcting mistakes.

How do you know which restaurant kitchen printer is right for you? Here are four things to consider:

  1. Choose an impact printer – Even the cleanest, most well-run kitchen is full of landmines that can damage electronics, especially printers. Heat, spills, particles and steam can harm a restaurant kitchen printer and cause expensive downtime while the printer is repaired or replaced.

Choose an impact printer with a ruggedized design that can withstand the hazards of a restaurant kitchen. Impact printers are designed so a printhead makes impact with an ink ribbon, transferring the message onto the receipt paper. The type of paper is key in this situation. Using impact paper gives the added benefit of withstanding heat, oil, and other harmful conditions found in the kitchen. Unlike thermal paper, impact paper doesn’t black when it is left in the heat of a kitchen.

 

  1. Internal power supply – Whether you’re operating a spacious kitchen, small kiosk or food truck, choose a restaurant kitchen printer with an internal power supply. An internal power supply eliminates the need for snaking power cords around the kitchen so printers can be placed at different work stations. If space is at a premium in your eatery, an internal power supply can free up several inches of valuable real estate.

 

  1. High-speed throughput – Kitchen backups can quickly snowball into extra waiting, so trim seconds off meal prep times whenever possible. A restaurant kitchen printer should have a high-speed throughput of 13 receipts per minute, which increases staff productivity and efficiency in the kitchen. The printer’s clear, easy-to-read tickets means your staff doesn’t have to play guessing games with the orders –they can print tickets quickly, assemble the dishes faster and ensure every selection comes out correctly the first time. Faster service means more throughput, higher profit margins and bigger tips for your wait staff.

 

  1. Easy paper loading – Choose a restaurant kitchen printer that is designed for easy paper loading. A restaurant kitchen printer will help staff shave minutes off food prep time, but don’t squander that saved time on reloading paper or struggling with paper jams—drop-in and print paper loading capability means staff can get back to work quickly.

Restaurant kitchen printers are an important tool for streamlining kitchen operations. An impact printer that prints quickly and clearly will help staff reduce meal prep times and increase order accuracy. Best of all, a kitchen printer will help everyone earn more money: faster table turns means more tips for wait staff and higher profit margins.

Growing Restaurant Revenue with Mobile POS

restaurant mPOS

Mobility is dominating the point of sale world. From table-side service, to tablet point of sale, mobility is making is easier for restaurant owners and operators to perform quick and painless transactions and give their customers the ideal dining-out experience. While some of the smaller, “mom and pop” restaurants may be hesitant to invest in a mobile point of sale (mPOS) system, they could be missing out on a huge boost in revenue by not upgrading. In addition to revenue increase, the adoption of an mPOS system could also mean an increase in tips for servers, making it easier to maintain low turnover rates.

A report by Software Advice shows that mPOS can predominantly impact your servers’ commitment to upselling – therefore, increasing daily restaurant revenue. Upselling is a sales technique that restaurant server often use to induce the customer to purchase more expensive items, upgrades, or add-ons when placing their order. This technique is commonly used by restaurant server because their calculated tip becomes higher with every dollar spent by the customer.

How does mPOS impact upselling?

In restaurant settings where the mPOS system is used for table-side service, the server may have a tablet in-hand entering the order as it is being placed. This can help remind the server to ask the customer if they would like to add a side of fries to their order or upgrade their drink to a larger size for only a dollar more. This is especially helpful for daily promotions or one-day offers that are not a part of the server’s regular order-taking routine.

restaurant mPOS charts

In the chart above provided by Software Advice, you can see that restaurants are not upselling as much as they could be. However, we can see that the majority of customers surveyed are more likely to make an order modification that was suggest by their server when dining out.

The Mobile POS Checklist

In case revenue increase isn’t reason enough to adopt a mobile point of sale system, we’ve outlined some additional benefits that mPOS can bring to restaurant businesses. According to an additional report done by Software Advice, 72% of restaurant owners request mobile restaurant POS software.

First and foremost, you need an mPOS system that is simple enough for any server to fluently use. If you’re looking for a mobile solution that will allow for a table-side service, you must ensure that your mPOS software is quick and easy-to-use. If your servers are disrupting the order process by taking the time to search for items in the POS, it defeats the purpose of the table-side mPOS solution.

Secondly, you will need a receipt printer that works seamlessly with your mPOS solution and will allow for a total transaction to be completed right at the table. It has been bound that engaging customers by having them complete the payment process right on the tablet can actually lead to an increase in tips. When this transaction is complete, servers equipped with portable, handheld receipt printers can kindly print and hand the customer their receipt without ever disrupting the transaction process.

In addition to the ease of use and fluid transaction process, mPOS systems often offer features such as inventory management, loyalty, and customer data capture, that help you run your restaurant more efficiently.

If you’re looking for an mPOS solution to take your restaurant business to the next level, be sure to check out Star’s line of portable receipt printers for your mobile point of sale needs.

Is Your Restaurant Ready for the Growing Online Ordering Trend?

blog-online-ordering-ebook

Are you looking for a new way to grow your restaurant business? Consider online ordering. According to QSR Web, digital ordering is growing 300 percent faster than dine-in traffic, and analysts project in a few years, more restaurant sales will come from takeout, delivery, and other forms of off-premises dining, than from customers who dine-in.

Restaurant competition is fierce and profit margins are tight. The majority of independently-owned restaurants that open today will not survive beyond a few years, and according to an Ohio State University study, more than 60 percent will fail in the first year.

A Cornell University study revealed restaurant survival is based on finding ways to differentiate your business from the competition and being agile enough to successfully respond to consumer trends.

Don’t become a statistic. Offering online ordering is a feature your customers are looking for, and it also elevates your digital presence, which can help raise awareness about what makes your restaurant and your brand unique and appealing.

There are three options for adding online ordering services:

  • Sign up with a third-party online order network. There are a variety of options for online ordering networks you can work with depending on your location. Investigate costs – some will charge a percentage of each order and others charge a flat fee for being listed on their websites.
  • Sign up for the online ordering service of your current POS solution (if available). This option provides the added benefit of integrating online sales with your finance report, but functionality of the online ordering application itself may be limited.
  • Integrate your own online ordering system on your own website. You can establish online ordering through your own website or app. This option locks a customer into your brand when they are ready to place orders and can build customer loyalty.

The process of receiving orders from a third-part ordering site and getting them to the kitchen can still be a pain point for some restaurants. Restaurants usually receive orders via email on a tablet in the restaurant – or on several tablets if they work with more than one third-party network. During a shift, one or more employees may be assigned to communicate the orders to the kitchen and enter them into the point of sale (POS) system. The lack of integration between online ordering sites and the POS system means the process still requires labor hours and errors can still occur when orders are transferred.

Consider the gains in efficiency, productivity, and customer satisfaction for your restaurant if you could download an app that would send your online orders directly to the kitchen printer where your staff could start food prep immediately and ensure orders are ready at the appropriate times. Technology solutions are available to help your restaurant bridge the gap between online orders and the kitchen.

Maximizing online order processing efficiency will enable you to truly benefit from adding this service to your business, allowing you to address this major consumer trend, reach a wider pool of potential customers, and fully develop this revenue stream.

Learn how you can easily integrate online ordering in your restaurant with Star’s TSP650IIcloudPRNT cloud printer.

Download our full eBook here: Star_Online-Ordering_eBook

Castillo Restaurant Gains Efficiency with Solutions from Star Micronics and Sabor

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Castillo is a New York City restaurant, offering unique Ecuadorian cuisine with a twist of America, Italian, and South American spices and flavors. Established in Sunset Park fifteen years ago, Castillo is now famously known for their dishes by different geographical locations in Ecuador, including the coast, the Andes Mountains, and the norther border between Ecuador and Columbia.

With their expanding business, Castillo felt their current POS system was unreliable and did not offer the data and analytics needed for sustaining operations. The POS system was dependent on their network’s WiFi connection, which caused their printer  and cash drawer to cease to function when the internet connection was lost from the router. Castillo also had trouble analyzing the data collected from their POS application. The owners understood data was collected accurately, but the dashboard was difficult to navigate and did not display user-friendly functionality. This dilemma left Castillo challenged to decipher the future of their growing business.

saborfinalimage_1

Star Micronics and Sabor provided Castillo with both hardware and software solutions for the ideal POS system bundle. Star Micronics’ TSP650IIBTi receipt printer pairs easily with Bluetooth connectivity. Castillo no longer has to worry about losing a WiFi connection if the internet went down. The quick and easy-to-use receipt printer includes “Drop-In & Print” paper loading, compact size, a reliable guillotine auto-cutter, and a fast printing speed of 60 receipts per minute. The installation only took about 15 minutes, and training was painless with easy-to-learn tutorials from Sabor’s “One-on-One” support team. Castillo staff members are now confident that they can perform excellent customer service and have a reliable printer during long business hours.

“We are very satisfied with the Sabor POS System,” says Maria Lema, Owner and General Manager of Castillo. “The issues we had with out printer and WiFi are not apparent on this system. Sending orders to the kitchen is no longer a hassle as it was with our older POS system. We like the restaurant features of the new system. They are certainly easy to use with big buttons to identify all the different sections of the software! We strongly recommend Sabor and Star Micronics solutions to other growing businesses. Everything is working great and I am more satisfied than ever!”

Download the full case study here: Star_Castillo_Case-Study

5 Reasons Why Your Restaurant Needs an Online Ordering System

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We recently posted an article about how our smart phones are replacing other devices in our lives such as cameras, computers, iPods, etc. They are changing the way we do everything, including the way we order food. In an age of being able to text instead of call, restaurants have learned to adopt this strategy of communication with online ordering systems.

Now, you can order your take-out or delivery with just a few simple clicks through online ordering systems and applications such as GrubHub, Seamless, and more. Some larger franchises, like Domino’s, have even created their own online ordering applications. This new way of ordering is growing rapidly among the younger generations. According to QSRweb, 52% of U.S. Internet users would likely use a smartphone or tablet for ordering take-out and delivery if possible, with 74% of millennials expressing interest in doing so. It’s needless to say that if you own or operate a restaurant that offers take-out or delivery, you should consider an online ordering system. Here’s why:

1. Higher Employee Productivity. Think about all the time your employees spend taking orders over the phone and making sure that the order is correct. When taking orders over the phone, there is a higher likelihood of miscommunication, in turn, compelling employees to stay on the phone longer to ensure that they have gotten the correct order before hanging up. By implementing an online ordering service, employees will spend less time taking phone orders and can spend more time actually preparing those orders for pick-up or delivery to the customer. Another great benefit of online ordering is the ability for the customer to pre-place large orders and set a specific pick-up or delivery time. This allows the restaurant employees time to properly prep large orders in advance.

2. Order Accuracy. Going back to the miscommunication that often occurs when taking orders over the phone, online ordering systems allow the customer to select and modify their food order exactly the way they like it. This order will then be sent directly to a restaurant printer with no misunderstanding or miscommunication. Being able to take an order straight from the printer to prep will cut back on order inaccuracy and will save the restaurant from wasting money and bad reviews.

3. Grow your Business. Sometimes people don’t want to be bothered with calling and placing their take-out or delivery order over the phone, and opt for a restaurant that provides an online ordering service or application instead. Convenience is key when it comes to customer service. Providing a seamless and easy-to-use  online ordering system will create a better experience for customers, resulting in an increase in sales.

4. Ability to Build a Database. When your customers order through an online ordering service, this creates an opportunity for you to capture information, such as an email address, and use this information to create a database. This database can then be used to communicate with your customers and encourage them to come back through loyalty programs, email marketing, mailing coupons, and more. When taking orders over the phone, you often times only receive their phone number and delivery address, which usually does not allow you to reengage with the customer after the transaction is complete.

5. Powerful Analytics. Once you’ve built your database of customers, you can then use analytics offered with online ordering services to track the ordering patterns of your customers. This will allow you to offer tailored promotions to customers based on what they frequently order or how frequently they order. You can also use this information to adjust, add, or remove menu items based on what your customers are ordering.

Implementing an online ordering system can bring endless benefits to your restaurant business. You may consider using your own, or partnering with an existing online ordering app. Whichever you choose, Star Micronics is there to help you seamlessly integrate online ordering into your restaurant by providing cloud-based point of sale technology to help that order go straight from the cloud, to your restaurant, and then out the door.

Learn more about Star’s TSP650IIcloudPRNT receipt printer here.