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
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.