Kiosk Solutions Issue 4 - Page 16

restaurant kiosks Adding technology to the menu Eating out is a popular social activity, and technology has finally taken its place at the table By Avril Arthur, Sentios The restaurant industry is huge, and with 12.9 million people employed over 970,000 locations it shows just how popular it is too. These days, the main way restaurants carry out their marketing is through social media, and looking at a study carried out by the National Restaurant Association, 95% of restaurants say they will be on Facebook and twitter in the next two years. Not only is social media great for marketing and promotion, there is also a growing number of consumers that pre-book their table, download vouchers and special offers, and also leave rating and reviews after their experience. And it doesn’t stop there, apart from technology being used at home prior and post to eating out on personal devices, some restaurants are now implementing table kiosks that customers can use at the table during their dining experience. Once seated customers can now read through the menu on this electronic device, select which option they would like and process their order. The order 16 KIOSK solutions is then sent through to the kitchen and when it’s ready, will be brought out to the table by the waiter. This results in ease for both the customer and the staff. Customers don’t have to hang around waiting for their waiter to come and take their order, and waiters are a lot less stressed rushing around the tables trying to memorise every customers order. Another benefit to this system is that the restaurant can easily update their menu accordingly and notify customers if something is not available. Therefore the customer can be sure they are reading the latest options available to them. Once an order has been placed, customers can take the opportunity to experience the entertainment that’s available to them via the kiosk while they wait. This is particularly great for children as it helps to distract them while they wait for their food to arrive if they get fidgety or bored. It’s also a good opportunity for restaurants to generate additional income because they can charge a small fee for customers to use the games, either by a set charge for unlimited use throughout the evening or a charge per individual game. The final feature of the electronic device is that you can also request for and pay for your bill. This is great if you’re in a rush and don’t have time to wait for the server to bring you your bill. You can simply click on the icon that says ‘pay bill’ and swipe your card. Alternatively, if you want to pay with cash, you can view the total amount and leave the cash on the table to be collected. Overall this technology is a great way for restaurants to save on costs and improve the customer experience. – fewer staff are required, and the restaurant no longer need to fork out to get menus printed and updated. It will also increase the customer’s temptation to order more, as it’s so simple there will be less hesitation to order extras. It will make restaurants a much more independent experience, meaning you rely less on your waiter/waitress and can take things at your own pace. n