The Heat is on for Restaurant Self-Serve Kiosk Deployment
In the last decade the quick serve restaurant (QSR) sector has seen more disruption than ever before and at an unparalleled speed. Because market disrupters Just Eat and Deliveroo are eating into profit margins and creating a new norm in customer expectations for fast, friction-less self-serve and delivery, many operators have been fighting a battle to survive. Restaurant self-serve kiosks are now a hot topic in our industry.
It is no surprise that restaurant self-serve kiosk technology has been a hot topic of discussion within the hospitality sector. The heat is now on and operators need to stop the conversation. It’s a time to act fast if they are to compete in the race towards deploying a successful customer-centric self-serve kiosk strategy and remain in business.
And, added to these new disruptive tech enabled forces, comes the global strategic vision of the world’s biggest QSR player, McDonalds. It’s aim to reinvent the consumer journey into self-serve kiosks and mobile Apps to meet consumer change and the need to extend revenue and drive efficiency and service.
Technology has been the driver of all these changes and remains the crux of business innovation. The “catch-up” is now on. In fact, an increasing number of restaurant operators see themselves as a “close follower” in technology adoption and, more than half of restaurateurs (74%) are planning to increase their budgets or maintain their investments in technology.
Shifting Strategic Goals for QSR Operators
In the past, the strategic goals of restaurant technology were largely concerned with increasingly operational efficiency and productivity, resulting in a focus on EPoS and back of house (BOH) systems. But today however, we’re seeing a shift from business efficiency to a customer-centric approach with a top priority of today’s technology being customer engagement.
With self-serve kiosks now being part of our daily lives from ticketing, airports, retail and fuel to name but a few, British restaurant and hospitality operators are now playing an urgent game of catch-up to become technology customer-centric. The focus to deliver the new consumer expectations of speed, choice, convenience, experience and instant gratification prevails and the restaurant self-serve kiosk concept is here to stay.
Interactive Restaurant Self-Service Technology (IRSST)
As technology rapidly evolves, so do advances in self-service and kiosk technology which will become an essential ingredient to service delivery.
In fact, more than half of consumers (65%) indicated that they found more options in restaurant self-service based technology such as kiosk, mobile Apps and online ordering. And most consumers (92%) were certain these options would become more important in the near future.(www.emeraldinsight.com)
Following this trend, QSR operators have invested substantially on customer-centric self-service technology and their own strategic digital customer journey to increase customer empowerment in the service, whilst freeing staff to focus on service and increasing revenue at less cost.
In 2013, US based Chilli’s and Applebee’s introduced instore iPads with digital menus. Fast forward six years and we are seeing self-serve and kiosks as the norm in the American fast food dining market. And Europe and other areas are quickly introducing self-serve technologies in the form of kiosks, tablets and mobile into their existing operations including Tossed in the United Kingdom, Oshi in Turkey, Izakaya in the Netherlands, Ebony in the United Arab Emirates and Neo in Russia.
Seven Priority Areas For Restaurant Self-Serve Kiosk Strategy
- The Customer User Experience. Ensure both the interface and experience is one of a carefully mapped out journey of intuitive ease, immersive engagement and seamless journey whatever the self-service PoS. From architectural design to visual appeal, engagement through to post transaction value, the customer user experience is the crux to your Brand value and self-service deliverable value to the customer.
- Software Integration. Know how your BOH, EPoS and Self-serve software will weave together to form one powerful data management hub to drive both customer experience and operational management. Know before you start, how both your staff, Head Office and customers will use and experience all elements of the software systems. And know how all applications will be integrated into one unified experience.
- Software Integration. Know how your BOH, EPoS and Self-serve software will weave together to form one powerful data management hub to drive both customer experience and operational management. Know before you start, how both your staff, Head Office and customers will use and experience all elements of the software systems and know how all applications will be integrated into one unified experience.
- Network Infrastructure. Consider the capability of your existing network capacity, priority routing and security. Review and plan your network infrastructure as part of the strategic self-serve plan.
- In-store Mapping. Understand how customers will travel through your outlet. Map out what changes need to be made to accommodate for the new customer footmark flow for the self-serve and kiosk instore journey. And continual;y improve the journey to maximise the high impact digital technology.
- Product Editing and Promotion. A key goal for self-serve is increased transaction value. In order to achieve this, a process to enable fast product and promotion update both locally and from the Head Office across all your EPoS and self-serve touch points.
- Identify ROI Trackers. Set goals to collate return on investment for different aspects of self-serve including: Average basket value, average order to delivery time, customer transaction wait time, customer satisfaction scores and customer loyalty/frequency.
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