The food business has been around for centuries, however, running a food business today is nothing like running it, 3 years ago. As technological advancements have changed our lifestyles, they have also changed the requirements and realities of the food business.
One of those new rules of the food business is having your restaurant or café available to your customers on a mobile device. Whether you are running a casual open-air dining space or a formal high-end restaurant, you need your business to be available on a mobile.
Are you unsure about mobile restaurant ordering? Looking for more proof of the benefits ? Please continue reading this post. We will make a detailed case for why your independent food business needs a mobile app.
1. Data Favors the Use of a Mobile
If you research the statistics for mobile users and restaurant businesses, you will come across many data points that favor the use of a mobile app for any food business. Here we will share with you some of those data points. After skimming through them, you can draw your conclusion.
- Almost 40% of all dining experiences entail a mobile phone one way or the other.
- There are over 45 million food delivery mobile users in the US right now. This number is expected to increase to around 54 million in the next two years.
- The food order placed through mobile apps and smartphones is around a $40 billion industry. It has over 10% share of all the sales of the fast-food industry.
- 95% of restaurant owners believe that the integration of technology improves their overall business (both in terms of revenue and efficiency).
Since we don’t want to turn this post into a statistical report, we will stop here with numbers. But even this cursory data analysis suggests that the benefits of mobile apps for restaurants are uncontested.
2. Leverage the Localized Promotion
Despite globalization and most businesses operating throughout the world, restaurants are one of those few ventures that still have to rely on their local prowess. This is especially true for independent, restaurants that can only serve to a particular geographical radius. Therefore, it makes sense if they invest their efforts and energies in localized marketing and promotion. A well-thought-out app for restaurant ordering can help them with their localized promotions.
With a unified application that contains a Customer Relationship Management component (CRM) You can send deals and discounts through push notifications to users within the physical proximity of your establishment. This feature can be a game-changer for a restaurant. It can let the restaurant draw in more consumers during meal times and invite customers who haven’t ordered recently you are still here and want them back as customers.
Mobile communication notification systems are beneficial for restaurants for two major reasons.
Acquiring Customers without Facing Competition
Today when a person mulls a bite to eat, they open their phone and search for the options on Google or a food delivery app. In both cases, a customer has to scan through loads of options to pick one. From a restaurant’s perspective, you have to compete with many other food joints to win a customer.
But what if you could reach out to the customer before they start searching for food options on their phone?
When a push notification text link of a scrumptious yet easy-on-the-wallet deal pops up on a user’s phone when they are hungry , you are more likely to win them over without facing any competition or obstacles. In short, you can make your competitors invisible to the potential pool of consumers.
It Is Less Expensive than Conventional Marketing
At the initial stage, you will have to set aside some marketing budget to promote your restaurant among potential consumers. However, once you get sign-ups and outreach, you can get free marketing for a long time. Even if a user doesn’t order food at every push notification they receive, those notifications will create a high recall value of your business in consumers’ minds. This way of persistent promotion is certainly more cost-effective than buying billboard places in the neighborhood or spending on direct marketing.
3. Offer the Best User Experience
Gone are the days when an eatery could get away with its poor user experience. In today’s extensively connected world, your food business will face grave repercussions with poor user experience. Customers at the receiving end of poor experience don’t hesitate in sharing their ordeal with hundreds of other potential customers on the web.
Therefore, restaurants need to offer the best possible user experience, and a mobile ready application can help with that. For starters, when your restaurant is mobile, you can meet customers where they are. And we know that the mobile screen is the place where most users can be found most of the time.
Secondly, a good mobile experience for restaurant ordering can offer a seamless no-contact engagement to customers. From sifting through the menu to using restaurant rewards and coupons and ordering food to leave reviews and feedbacks, customers can go through the entire transaction without having to go anywhere and call anyone. Sorting through your menu options from the couch within a couple of scrolls and taps has made mobile a must have convenience for most users.
Keep in mind that in today’s highly customer-centric times, you can’t run your business based on good food only. You need to complement it with a great user experience. In many cases, a good user experience becomes a tiebreaker for two restaurants offering the same quality and taste of food at similar price points.
4. Harness Social Proof and Good Reputation
While angry and unsatisfied customers are quick to leave a review, happy and content customers usually don’t bother to say anything about their experience. A happy customer might turn into a repeat customer without saying a single word about the business. Therefore, it has always been tricky for businesses to collect genuine good reviews.
A mobile experience for restaurant ordering helps you get around this inherent shortcoming of the business. Many surveys suggest that customers don’t review a business if it takes time and involves several steps. Now you can ensure that customers can leave a review without leaving their comfort zone. You can set a reminder after every transaction that can lead a customer to the review page. Asking for a review directly through their device is more yielding than asking it in person, or a printed receipt message.
With more customer reviews, your food business will be able to build more social proof and a good reputation. Today, word of mouth comprises online customer reviews. With more customer reviews, you can harness more word of mouth for your restaurant. And there is no promotional device better than word of mouth.
5. Streamline On-Site Service
Usually, a mobile app for restaurant ordering is only considered good for online operations. However, you can also use it to streamline the on-site services of your restaurant. For instance, pre-ordering on the app are a great way to ensure you can manage the dine-in traffic without bothering consumers with long waiting and delayed orders.
Moreover, a mobile app for a small restaurant can come in quite handy in improving its carryout orders. By enabling consumers to order on the app in advance, restaurants can ensure that they can fulfill the order before the consumer arrives at the establishment to pick it up. The app will improve their turnaround and also prevent congestion in their already congested small standing areas.
In-house oerdering and contactless payments can also be done on a mobile divice. Using Qr codes, or payment based links in texts allow users to pay for thier meals using their pereferred pay methods securely and safely.
6. Penetrate the Most Rewarding Consumer Base
What is the most rewarding consumer base for a restaurant?
If we factor in the stats and general lifestyle tendencies, young people appear to be the most lucrative pool of consumers for food ventures. To begin with, Millennials and Generation Z are more accustomed to shopping on their phones. They are more comfortable ordering and paying for food online rather than doing it on a call or in person. Also, they spend more on eating out than older consumers.
By introducing a mobile ready app for food ordering, a restaurant can become more accessible to that consumer base.
Get Your Restaurant on Mobile with MenuCRM
If you want to leverage all the benefits of mobile apps for restaurants mentioned, you should get in touch with MenuCRM to get set up. The experts at MenuCRM can provide you with an innovative mobile solutions for restaurants tailored to your business requirements and integrated with a well thought out digital strategy. Contact MenuCRM today and get started right away.