8 Restaurant Technologies You Need in Your Restaurant
You’ve got a great location, an astounding menu and a dining room decked out with reclaimed wood furniture and timeless decor. But have you brought your restaurant into the 21st century?
While you might get by keeping it “old school”, the fact is that modern technology is a critical part of running a successful restaurant business. Implementing the latest restaurant technology can increase your sales and make running your business more efficient.
Ready to upgrade your establishment? Check out all of the restaurant technology your restaurant needs to have below.
1. Point of Sale System
A functional and easy-to-use point of sale system is the most essential piece of technology a restaurant needs to invest in. Commonly referred to as a POS system, a point of sale interface is essentially a computerized cash register that is customizable for your business. A good POS system will feature a touch screen interface that your staff can use to easily input menu orders and use to check out customers. It should also make it easy to accept credit card and mobile payments.
There is a wide range of POS systems on the market today, from software that you can run through a tablet computer to dedicated terminals. Whatever option you choose, having some kind of computerized POS system is an absolute must. Not only is it easier on your employees, but having an up-to-date POS reduces wait times and greatly improves the customer experience
2. Scheduling Software
Have a big staff to manage? Let scheduling software take the headache out of planning who has to come in to work when. Scheduling software makes it easy for employees to adjust their availability, find out when they are working, and request time off. Scheduling software will do the work of analyzing your employees’ availability for you and will automatically generate a schedule.
We live in an increasingly connected society, and as a result, Wi-Fi is a thoughtful perk to provide your clientele. Offering free Wi-Fi can attract customers who need to work through lunch or creatives who want to savor your atmosphere while they conduct their business. Wi-Fi can also be helpful when it comes to connecting your restaurant technology to the internet, although a hardwired ethernet connection is a more reliable choice.
4. Music Licensing Service
If you are spinning your favorite CDs in your establishment, you might be breaking U.S. copyright law. Believe it or not, playing music in your restaurant is considered a public performance and artists and composers are entitled to royalties as a result. You might also think that playing music through your paid personal streaming service of choice has you covered, but those fees don’t cover public performance royalties. While your chances of getting caught are slim, why take the risk? If you want to comply with the law, find a restaurant music licensing service and subscribe.
5. Loyalty Programs
Reward your most frequent customers with a loyalty program. Ditch the punch cards and opt to work with a company that manages loyalty programs via your customers’ mobile phone number. While you will pay a fee to use such a service, it should pay for itself and then some by encouraging your customer base to come back often. For best results, make sure your loyalty program integrates with your chosen POS system.
6. Online Reservations
Working with an online reservation provider will not only help to free up your phones but will also free up your employees as well by streamlining the process of reserving tables. A computerized system is less prone to mistakes and easier to make changes to. Not only that, but online reservation sites get a ton of web traffic. Being listed on an online reservation site is yet another marketing channel for your business and will expose your establishment to customers you wouldn’t reach otherwise. As with loyalty programs, you’ll want to integrate your reservation system with your POS for best results.
7. Online Ordering
As with online reservations, adopting an online ordering system on your website will streamline your business and save your employees time and hassle on the phone. Online ordering can increase your revenue, lower labor costs, and reduce wait times for your patrons. More and more people, especially younger generations, prefer to make transactions online or on their smartphones. Not having an online ordering system in place can potentially cut you off from a large chunk of your customer base.
8. Inventory Management Software
Inventory management software is a brilliant way to reduce costs by more accurately anticipating the ordering needs of your restaurant. A well-implemented system will take into account which items are selling best and determine how much you need to order in the future. This will help you avoid wasting money on spoiled food or not having enough of the hottest sellers.
The Future of Your Restaurant
Restaurant technology requires a substantial upfront investment, but when implemented correctly will have a positive impact on your bottom line. New technologies allow you to do more with fewer employees while enhancing the customer experience. If you’ve been reluctant to bring your establishment into the modern era, hopefully now you see how restaurant technology can help you take your business to new heights.