You know the usual drill - you arrive at the restaurant and get taken to your table, that is, if there’s no wait at first.
Once at your table, you get your drink orders in and might be able to request an entrée at the same time. If the place is busy and popping, it might be quite some time until you’re able to order your mains, if you were able to order in that entrée already.
This is where table ordering comes in, where you can say goodbye to having to wait for the serving staff and get straight to putting your meal orders in. Table ordering streamlines the entire ordering and serving process, freeing up staff and leaving customers satisfied.
Restaurant table ordering is becoming an increasingly popular method at restaurants these days as it can also limit movement in the restaurant - an important aspect in a COVID-world.
Even McDonald’s implemented a version of this service with their online ordering via their in-house app, or kiosks where staff members bring your meal right out to you.
The beauty of this service for customers is they’re able to view a restaurant’s menu extensively through the table ordering app, or the app ordering section of the restaurant’s own personalised app. How the app looks and feels is up to the business and how they want their restaurant ordering technology to function.
Ultimately, table ordering provides multiple benefits for restaurants and if you’re looking to add it to your business model then keep reading. While there are more, below are the five main reasons your restaurant needs table ordering in 2021:
Improves Overall Customer Experience
As we know, a happy customer is a loyal customer and the chances are, their experiences will be greatly improved if they visit your restaurant and have the ability to order completely from the table.
Table ordering also removes any serving errors which can occur from time to time, especially if the staff are overwhelmed with a big order involving specifications. Table ordering technology also creates a faster experience, where diners are likely to receive their meals much quicker than standard service.
Table ordering software is fairly easy to use and become accustomed to, so customers should have no issues navigating the app. They’re sure to love it! Remember how important loyal customers are, not only for repeat business, but also for word-of-mouth advertising.
It can never be overstated how important retaining customer data is for restaurants. Having access to customer data is essential to gaining new loyal customers; the more you know about your customers means you are able to better target your advertisements.
Customer data includes information such as how often they visit, birthdays, favourite dishes and drinks - this simplifies the process of personalising your marketing campaigns going forward.
A table ordering service requires customers to set up an account, which provides the information needed for this method and also gives restaurants an idea of a customer’s behaviour, such as preferred payment methods and dietary options.
Guests Feel In Control
The process when attending a table ordering restaurant starts the same as any - wait staff take customers to their table and they take their seats. From here, the choice is up to them, the experience is in their complete control. Some restaurants might ask servers to offer specials to customers but usually, it’s left to the diner once they arrive at the table.
Once the customer has finished their meal, they can then leave and pay, or stick around to order dessert and more drinks. Table ordering apps are also designed with the option to have the customer pay directly through the app, when they make the order with a card or PayPal.
The feeling of being in control, as well the great previous experiences they’ve already had, will bring customers back, resulting in repeat business. More than that, this likely means social media shoutouts and word-of-mouth advertising.
The speed of this service, as well as the efficiency of it, means customers will be in-house for a shorter amount of time, which frees up table space. This is what we want because it will result in more customer turnover on any given night - you can’t argue with having more customers, right?
The good news doesn’t stop there either, on average customers spend 5% more when using a table ordering app. This is due to ordering add-ons through upselling, or generally finding the appealing app menu attracting them to buy more. They’ll feel less guilty about ordering more as they’ve removed the human interaction from the process.
One more thing, your app will save you a lot of money on printing costs as your menu is completely digital. The beauty of this is you can make changes to the menu at your own discretion without having to reprint anything.
Places Your Restaurant At The Forefront of the Industry
Simply put, a table ordering app shows that your business is ready for the future and willing to adapt to the needs of your customers. It also shows that your restaurant isn’t going anywhere and if anything, intends to only get bigger.
When customers install your app, they see that you want them coming back, their business is wanted and they will benefit by coming to your establishment i.e. via loyalty perks.
Table ordering service puts your business on ‘the same table’ as self-service checkouts, PayPass, online ordering and other services which emphasis the digital and minimise the human interaction and error.
The Bottom Line
These are the main reasons YOU should be implementing a table ordering service at your restaurant in 2021. It’s more important and essential than ever in an unpredictable world, where staff and customer movement in a restaurant is required to be limited.
Technology is only going to continue to integrate itself further into our lives, more so than it has already. Don’t let your restaurant get left behind.