In this new digital era of hospitality, your guests expect more from each restaurant experience. Understanding how restaurants and technology work together will give you a competitive advantage. You can work smarter and increase revenue while turning every guest into a regular. What could be better?
Here are 5 ways restaurant technology can benefit your business and elevate your guest experience.
Statistics show that over 80% of guests research a restaurant before dining out, and 81% decide based on the restaurant's website. Your website is the first impression guests have of your business, so it's crucial for restaurant profitability to put in the effort to make it better.
How to optimise your restaurant’s website? Update the menu on the website regularly to convey transparency and keep your working hours up-to-date. Make sure you're using a reservation system that’s easy to use and matches your restaurant’s branding, look and feel.
Remember that most people use their phone instead of a computer to go online. Make sure your restaurant’s website is responsive and easily accessible on smartphones and tablets.
Are you using a platform that accepts payments from anywhere in the world and online?
Your guests are found online and they’re used to a convenient, quick way of paying. Having the right payment technology means you can sell tickets, host pre-paid events, ask for deposits and even sell gift cards online, resulting in new revenue possibilities and increased profit margins for your restaurant.
Some solutions – like GXM Pro – let you go further and gather all payments in one simple report to save you time.
Look for a restaurant management system that gathers data automatically. Knowing everything from how well your staff perform to what dishes sell the best gives a complete overview of how your business is performing.
Having this data will ultimately increase your restaurant’s revenue, elevate your guest experience and make guests return.
Some older platforms give you these insights separately, but newer restaurant technology integrates these fragmented systems into a single, easy-to-operate platform.
Restaurant technology isn’t just the POS and payments. It’s also your online presence.
The most-used way to search for a bistro or restaurant is with a smartphone. With that in mind, make sure you have a shareable reservation link that works across all your social media channels. This puts your restaurant a click away from a potential customer.
Find out which social media channels (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, TikTok) are relevant to your guests and focus on those. From there, engage with your online audience by liking their comments, liking their photos and commenting back on both positive and negative reviews. You can also use social media to promote events and online registrations.
Email marketing is another great solution to engage with your audience. It’s not as difficult as it sounds – simply send emails that announce new menu items, specials or other information that you want in front of your guests. Read more about restaurant email marketing here.
Using guest data is vital for any restaurant to succeed and increase its profit margins. This is the first step to building loyalty and ensuring guests come back and spread the word.
Knowing their names is a good starting point, but it's not enough. They expect to feel at home and to have personalised experiences. How to do that? Start collecting their data.
Work with a platform that lets you create guest profiles. This helps you register the number of visits, the average amount spent at your restaurant, favourite wine, food allergies, and more. Superb’s Guest Experience Management platform collects this guest data and help you analyse it to build better guest experiences and increase revenue.
"With a small staff and small menu that relies on local, seasonal goods, advanced notice is vital to us providing a top-class experience. Superb supplies us with, in advance, all dietary advice and the needs of each customer. This isn't just great for guests, as we can create bespoke requests with no delays when they arrive, but also — with only one chef — Darren gets plenty of time to plan and make arrangements for their food.” – Nick Fenton of Henne in England
Whether you’re unsure about the advantages of updating your restaurant's tech, or you're already following the trends, check out the list below for the top 5 ways to know if the technology in your restaurant is out of date.
One of the must-haves of a great guest experience is for you and your team to know your guests. How? Create a profile for them, noting how many times they’ve visited, what kind of dishes they ordered, what wine they usually go for, or even their favourite seat.
In this new era of hospitality, you don’t have to rely on writing down every single detail by hand. A platform like Superb’s Guest Experience Management (GXM) helps you register the data and create guest profiles. Even better, you can choose a solution that integrates the data with reservations and everything else, making it a fully automatic process.
As Roy Magne Berglund, Owner of Lofoten Food Studio in Norway puts it, "Having an all-in-one platform simplifies my daily operations and gathers all my guest data in one place. It makes it much easier for my team to make each guest feel special and build relationships."
Kevin Dow, restaurant Manager at The Gannet in Scotland, agrees, "I was used to working with 4 or 5 different platforms and collating all the information. It's time-consuming, and it takes away from concentrating on the guests and the dining experience."
To run a successful restaurant or bistro, make sure that your guests are happy and satisfied, so they spread the word about your restaurant and return with their friends and family.
You want to provide the perfect guest experience because, in the end, it's all about the guests. To do that, make sure that you use customer data to your advantage.
"The focus should be on the guest experience. The guests we have tonight are the ones who need to be happy. And then tomorrow is a new day. I'd much rather have a full restaurant with happy guests every day than having one, two or three Michelin stars." — Mikael Svensson of Kontrast in Norway.
The guest experience doesn't start at the table; it's a never-ending effort.
If you build relationships with your guests, you'll be able to send them celebratory emails for their birthday or send a discount for their preferred beer. You’ll also open communication lines, making it possible for them to text if they're planning to change the reservation or if they need to reschedule.
The end result? Your guests will feel appreciated and connected to you, your team and your restaurant. And they’ll come back over and over again.
It's vital to look through each service's flaws and successes for a full overview of how your business is doing. You can’t do that with outdated tech. Having information on how your team is performing is helpful, but you can go further. Look at that data with the kitchen’s performance and the most-ordered dishes. Comparing these types of factors gives the complete picture of your restaurant.
Some platforms give you these insights separately, but it’s essential to integrate them in this new digital era.
"We try to improve every day, and it's something that I think about every single day. I'll review the day we had and think about areas we can improve, what went well, what wasn't as good as it should have been. It's always about pushing ourselves to be better." – Riley Sanders of Canvas in Thailand.
Sticking with just a reservation platform, you miss out on features that can help boost profits.
With tools like online gift cards, prepaid menus, events and tickets, and more, you unlock new revenue streams, upsell and grow your business. The possibilities are endless with the right solutions.
“An all-in-one platform enables me to save time and personalise each guest experience based on previous visits. At the same time, it makes it easy to keep track of my sales, costs and gross profit.” – Joe Devine of Boo Natur in Sweden.
Upgrading to one platform that integrates POS, reservations, guest data and payments will help you save time, work smarter, and ultimately maximise revenue.
This is the future of restaurant technology and it’s already here with Superb’s GXM Pro.
"Having everything collated together as an all-in-one solution is so much easier for me and enables us to make the whole experience more personal for our guests." — Kevin Dow of The Gannet in Scotland.
The technologies that restaurants use the most are point of sale systems (POS), credit card terminals, accounting software, reporting and payroll software, inventory management, kitchen display systems and invoice management systems.
Cloud-based point-of-sale systems (EPOS systems) are the most important types of technology in the restaurant and hospitality industries.
With that in mind, it’s important to look for a restaurant management platform that can integrate multiple tools in one.
Technology in the restaurant industry is usually limited to the programs, hardware and platforms that run the back of house (like the POS systems). In reality, technology includes everything from your website and reservation system to your Instagram account and emails.
It’s important to consider that as the restaurant and hospitality industry becomes more and more digitalised, so must the way we think of tech and restaurants.
While chatbots, self-ordering kiosks and tabletop ordering systems are the newest technological advancements in the industry, the fact remains that the guest experience is still paramount.
At Superb, the best restaurant technology is what helps you create an unforgettable experience for your guests. That’s why our Guest Experience Management platform (GXM) frees up your time and let you focus on personalising each experience based on data.
Technology has transformed the restaurant industry and made it easier for chefs, restaurant managers and team members to focus on each individual guest. With the right platform, you can collect data about your guest and ensure every visit is special.
Before technology came in, most restaurants worked with pen and paper. But now, no matter the size of your dining room, you can market your entire restaurant online and stay updated on guests’ allergies, favourite dishes and even which wines they prefer.
It no longer depends on who is working. With advancements in the technology of restaurants (like Superb’s GXM platform), every team member can access the same information and make each guest feel welcomed.
When you’re ready to invest in tech for your restaurant, the most important factor to consider is what it can do for you. Can it help you save time? Will it help you increase restaurant profits? By investing, will you have more time to focus on your guest and their experience?
If the answer is yes, then you’ve found the tech you need.
It’s important to think beyond the hype. Yes, you need a great POS system. But more importantly, you need one that integrates with other tools like guest profiles and even puts an end to no-shows with credit card confirmation. That way you’ll have a total overview of your business and not bits and pieces.
Ultimately, look for an all-in-one platform that merges multiple tools and lets you put your focus where it belongs – on the guest.