How Digital Menu Helps You Increase Your Profit Margin & Offers Diners An Exclusive Experience

Digital Magazines, e-Books, or be it digital payments, India’s obsession with technology is growing day by day, and there is something new coming up every month. And now, with the restaurant industry going massively digital, the latest addition to the list is digital menu already leading the charts in the restaurant technology trends.

Restaurants that have digitized menus record higher sales and revenue with desserts alone witnessing a 30% increase in sales. 

What is A Digital Menu?

Digital Menu

It is an online food ordering system at the restaurant that is accessible to the diners via their mobile phones. The diners at your restaurant can scan the QR code printed on the tent card, and the menu will pop up on their phones. They can select food items and place their order directly. 

This can be the first step to boost sales. You get an opportunity to offer an exclusive dining experience to your customers that also translates to increased average order value. Leading restaurants have been successfully using digital menus at their restaurants. And this has helped them increase revenue.

Here is how digital menus are the future of restaurants:

 

  • Cross-selling and Up-selling made simple

Cross-sell and Up-sell menu items

The digital menu helps recommend items to diners based on their order history. It also highlights chef specials or hot selling items during that season, helping you up-sell. 

In addition to that, you can cross-sell by creating new combos or eliminating old ones, as per your convenience.

  • Eliminate extra cost

A digital menu helps you customize your menu and pricing for the same on the go. Avoid spending your time and resources on printed/physical menus. The introduction of the digital menu helps eliminate the need for staff to take orders. The cost savings can be used to train and remove other challenges faced during service.

  • Reduce wait time for diners

 The diners get the control and flexibility of placing an order at their own pace when they don’t have to wait for someone to take their order. They can highlight any special request according to their palate. 

 When the customers place the order digitally, not only does it make the ordering process faster but also reduces manual error and avoids miscommunication. This helps you elevate the diner’s experience at your restaurant. 

  • Improved Aesthetics

Food is the most instagrammable article and the most shared item on social media. We can’t help but agree that food looks more visually appealing in digital photos and images can be edited using different tools as well. 

The digital menu gives you the ability to upload and change images as per your needs. It also provides the diners with a sneak peek into how appetizing the food at your restaurant is going to be.

  • Easy access to Customer Data

When the diners scan the QR code and open the menu on their phones, the system records their credentials. Customer data, the most beneficial commodity, helps you understand their behaviour and create personalised offers and dining experience based on their preferences.

  • Provides creative space 

 Digital mediums have the ability to offer more creative freedom. You can play with the content and add interesting insights. It gives you the option to highlight interesting insights on the food that is served. We have a growing market of health-conscious consumers. You can tap into such niche markets and curate a menu that is more appealing to them. You can also intrigue them by sharing the source of the products associated with the dish. 

By designing smart marketing strategies, you can create a digital menu for your restaurant that can help you bring greater business to your restaurant. This new-age technology has been a game-changer for restaurants that have adopted it and is going to be the next hot selling item in the industry. 

Make a smarter choice for your restaurant. Switch to a digital menu today.

How are Loyalty Programs and Campaigns driving Sales for Restaurants

Technology is making our lives simpler and more convenient in every way. Businesses across sectors, whether online or brick & mortar, are increasingly turning to digital technology to become more efficient. The Restaurant industry is no different. 

Among various technology solutions available, personalised loyalty programs and targeted marketing campaigns are the most effective tools to gather a huge paying customer base, which is also loyal to your brand.

According to a study on the ‘Global Food and Beverage Market’ by Cushman and Wakefield, the Asia Pacific region is the fastest-growing when it comes to spending on dining out. The average annual growth rate is estimated at 7.5% during the period 2017-27.

How is technology helping you to keep your customers hooked?

Your restaurant has great food, and your diners love you, but what can you do to build a special relationship with your diners? Make your diners feel special on their every visit, and every time they want to dine out, they will think of you. Loyalty programs can help you do that effortlessly.

You need to understand your customers’ patterns and shower them with offers. And, this does not mean that running offers will lead you to losses. On the contrary, it is the perfect strategy to gain profits.

There are customers who visit your restaurant at least two times a week. Some visit less often, but whenever they do, they like to spend a hefty amount. There are also customers who have a favorite from the menu and order it on their every visit. 

With Loyalty programs, you can recognise such customer behaviour, categorize them into segments, and create programs tailored to their preferences. 

There is nothing like a good loyalty program that can keep the diners hooked to your restaurant.

There is more you can do with it-

  • Provides you a choice between point-based and instant discount based programs. Restaurants have total control over the entire process, including the rewards to be given.
  • Creates a reward program on billing value and frequency of visits.
  • Enables effective and hassle-free customer interactions.

According to the Restaurant Success Report of 2019, 64% of guests look for loyalty programs while dining out. Among them, 50% of customers say that loyalty programs – and the rewards they offer – are important factors in picking the restaurant they choose to visit.

 

Spread the Word and Reach Out to your Customers

You have created the most effective loyalty programs for your customer base, but how will your customers know that amazing offers are awaiting them at your restaurant?

Of course, you can hand them gift cards when they visit you, but you can reach a larger audience by making use of technology.

Campaigns‘ is a tool that enables you to periodically reach out to your target customers. Messages and Emails that contain offers and experiences tailored to their individual preferences create compelling reasons for them to come back – effectively driving up the frequency of customer visits to the restaurant.

People often reach out to their phones whenever they have to choose a place of dining. Their smartphone becomes their best friend. When you send them personalised campaigns that contain offers, discounts, and experiences that your restaurant will provide them, your restaurant gets noticed, and there is a more likely chance that they visit you.

There is more to it-

  • Imports customer data to set-up personalised campaigns. 
  • Automates the process of targeting the customer base through text messages and emails. 
  • Performs exhaustive analytics to assess campaign performance and suggest course corrections as and when required. 

About 50% of the recipients find automated email services helpful, as per the Restaurant Success Report of 2019. The importance of this tool cannot be overstated, as it can significantly increase a restaurant’s acquisition and retention rates. 

Loyalty programs and marketing campaigns have proved to be a powerful tool in retaining a loyal customer base. Adopt these technology solutions in your restaurant and see for yourself. There will be a lot of familiar and happy faces you are going to see often! 

The Restaurant Chronicles | GIRF 2020 is live | Kitchens that Fly High and more

How Cloud kitchens are leveraging technology to increase profits and delight customers?

For the past few years, the restaurant industry has been quite experimental in terms of technology and has witnessed favorable growth. New technological innovations are sliding every day and creating a buzz in the market. 

 

Technology is the backbone for restaurants that accept incoming orders only through online ordering systems. Commonly known as cloud kitchens, they have a base kitchen that delivers food to the customers with no dine-in facility. At any given point, a cloud kitchen uses at least 5 to 6 varied tech products, including Point of sale systems (POS), CRM, Loyalty, Campaigns, and more. All technology platforms give out data but are not interlinked. Managing a variety of technology solutions individually can be a little challenging.

 

Cloud kitchens operate for the benefit of the customers who just love App-based and easy ordering. They are discovered online through various mediums like Facebook, Web discovery, delivery aggregators, and more. With orders pouring in from multiple online platforms (Thanks to digital being so successful), it becomes virtually impossible to keep up. It requires more labour, more work hours, and eventually results in increased cost and overworked employees.

 

Now let’s understand a restaurant’s plight – A customer orders regularly; however, the restaurant has no history of billing, order channel, dining pattern, order preferences, etc. because somewhere the system falls short. It is difficult for the restaurant management to track all of the above manually. Restaurants, especially cloud kitchens, require integrated software that can streamline all the operations for them. 

 

Let’s paint a beautiful picture where all orders land directly into your POS dashboard, you can assign a delivery executive from the POS itself. Turning off all aggregator portals happens with a click without accessing each platform. Further to this, let’s erase the manual & tedious task of house operations, i.e., raw material requirement assessment, routing orders to suppliers, distribution of semi-prepared dishes from central kitchen to outlets, and more. Now let’s bring this picture to life because, with inresto POS, all of the above is possible.

Instead of dealing with multiple software vendors, cloud kitchens can use integrated software like the one inresto has, with all the restaurant management solutions at one place. This allows kitchens to focus on their core business without worrying about a stack of technological solutions. 

 

All frontend and backend operations such as managing online orders from different aggregators- (Zomato, Swiggy, & more); enabling menu changes, customised pricing, assigning delivery executives, raw material requirement inventory management, data analysis, and more can be controlled from a single dashboard. 

 

Statistics tell us that Inventory management is one of the biggest challenges that our Cloud kitchen partners have faced in the past. Space being a limitation, cloud kitchens can only store two to three days of stock, which makes it imperative to have optimum inventory to avoid negative impact amongst customers and wastage. With inresto’s SCM and POS integration, past sales can be analysed for trend recognition, which further enables our cloud kitchen partners to make stock and item exchange effortless.

 

Since the Amazon for Business integration into our SCM module, we have curated a marketplace with items listed at the best possible price. This enables our partner cloud kitchens and restaurants to access quality and affordable raw materials. More perks being- timely deliveries and the option to convert payments into EMIs.

 

Everything is jargon unless backed by data – Our cloud kitchen partner, and fitness-focused cloud kitchen chain has witnessed a 9% reduction in cost and over 120-man hour decrease. Another leading cloud kitchen in India started by using our Tech at one of their outlets now seamlessly bringing that number to 50+

 

Over 70% of the restaurants are turning to technology. Make your switch today!

 

The Restaurant Affair- Bengaluru Chapter

Introduction

The Restaurant Affair is a series of events for restaurateurs to get updated on the notable insights and ongoing trends that are shaping the restaurants of today.

The Restaurant Affair- Bengaluru Chapter was the first edition where about 100-150 Restaurateurs and Industry icons of restaurants and chains like Vapour Pub and Brewery, Theobroma, TOIT, Byg Brewski Brewing Company, Conrad, and more of the likes gathered. It was an opportunity for restaurateurs to reconnect with their industry folks and meet new ones.

Here’s what happened:

1. Panel Discussion

When our panelists got to talking, secrets were spilled, and the audience was all ears. The restaurateurs were exposed to insights, and business ideas, no book or classroom lecture will tell you about yet! There were talks about how restaurant technology is changing the face of the industry and how the technology product suites like the one inresto has to offer, helped established restaurants and newbies make a mark.

2. Dineout’s journey

Among various restaurateurs’ stories, there was ours too! Our co-founder Mr. Vivek Kapoor took to the stage, and the audience was thrilled and inspired to hear the journey. From being just a reservation platform to being restaurant enablers, we have come a long way. 

The B2B arm of dineout – inresto aims at enabling restaurants to achieve maximum efficiency through the valet to valet, cost-effective, and plug & play product suite that has helped 10000+ restaurants boost their business, globally.

3. Technology Workshops

After being introduced to technology solutions and dynamic innovations, we took the restaurateurs through the working knowledge of the products. Our audience got to try their hands on the latest technology solutions. 

If you missed being a part of the event or happened to miss this session, you can experience our entire product suite here

We topped it all off with a happy hour of wine, dine, and unlimited conversations!

If you are enticed to be a part of a restaurant affair like this, let us know at info@dineout.co.in so that we can meet you while we’re on the road. We are city hopping, and our next destination is Hyderabad. We can’t wait to hear that city’s restaurant story! 

 

How to Choose the Right Restaurant Management Software

No matter what the size, scale and spread of your restaurant operations may be, the right set of restaurant management solutions is your most reliable source when it comes to both efficient management of operations and optimal planning for long-term growth and expansion.

Understanding the Complete Restaurant Management System

A complete restaurant management software is your solution to every possible challenge your restaurant faces in its day to day operational activities. Solutions that are developed and customized to fulfill the specific needs of the F&B Service industry. It lets you manage your restaurant without hassles, saves human effort and costs.

The complete restaurant management solution includes the following functional modules:

  • Point Of Sale 

    A Billing and settlement system that works across all conceivable payment modes.

  • Supply Chain Management (SCM)

     A tailored, ingredient-level solution for recipe and inventory management.

  • Digital Menu

    A digital ordering system that simplifies KOT management, and enables automated direct-to-chef orders through a smart Kitchen Display System or kitchen printer.

  • Reservations 

    A technology system that efficiently manages Table Bookings and walk-in Reservations.

  • Digital Feedback 

    Customer Feedback is taken on your smart device which stores all the customer data and also enables instant grievance redressal.

  • Customer Relationship and Loyalty Management 

    You can do targeted marketing by running customized campaigns and loyalty programs through an automated programmatic approach.

  • Reporting & Analytics

    There are relevant modules to analyse data for continuous cross-functional improvement.

  • Digital Presence 

    Developing an informative website and mobile app for your restaurant.

With the emergence of multiple restaurant management software-as-a-service based solutions, and a mushrooming of online software providers, the solution is now not only accessible and affordable to the smallest and newest players, but there is also a plethora of choices. Today’s cloud-hosted solutions cater to your restaurant’s every possible need. 

Criteria Of Selection

Considering we have a vast pool available to choose from, you might need a guide to select the best of the options. Here’s that:

1. Customizability 

It’s best if the software you choose can be tailored to suit your restaurant’s specific requirements. In some cases, open-source software allows for customization at a coding level.

2. Compatibility 

The solution has to be compatible with your restaurant’s legacy software, with other commonly-used software and with the hardware devices in your restaurant.

3. Scalability  

Choose a solution that seamlessly supports volume growth and geographic expansion, as well as the diversification of operational models within your business. You don’t want to keep changing your software as and when your restaurant expands. Remember, these software are meant for you to save costs and not raise them further.

4. Flexibility

A solution that allows you to pick and choose, add to or delete modules within the overall software package, based on stage-of-life-cycle needs, is the optimal solution. A smart software for you to make smart choices is what you need for your restaurant.

5. Usability 

When the customer interface is friendly, instinct-driven, and informative, it is easier to use, and you don’t waste too much time figuring out how to operate the system. 

6. Advanced Analytics 

When the solution tracks performance, provides insights and indicators, one can analyse and make continuous improvements and optimize operational performance.

A restaurant that is customer-friendly and has revenues flowing is every restaurateur’s dream and you don’t want to compromise on that. And you don’t have to! Now that we have created a guide for you to choose the correct solution which can make it happen, you don’t have to wait any further!

Ways to Go Green at your Restaurant: Make it an environment-friendly space

Don’t you think the world looks good in green? The restaurant industry definitely thinks so, and the last decade has witnessed some efforts by restaurants to go green. The movement has gathered steam, and ‘Go Green’ is fast becoming the new mantra. Some restaurants have even adopted eco-friendly themes as their principal USP.

The Indian Food Service industry will be worth Rs 6 lakh crore by 2022-23, with a CAGR of 9%. While the industry does much to sustain the growth impetus for the economy, in terms of its impact on the environment, it leaves much to be desired. 

Here are a few guidelines for restaurateurs who sense the winds of change, but remain unsure about how to get the ball rolling: 

1. Ethical sourcing

One of the best secrets to keep an eco-friendly environment lies in your own backyard. Grow your own or source organic foods and follow a strict farm to fork policy.

You must ensure that suppliers follow ethical crop production and animal welfare norms.

2. Ditch Paper, Log in with Technology

Cut down on paper usage. Living in the digital age and time, this can’t get any simpler

We know that the billing systems are all on your computers. Gone are the days when you had to sit at the counter writing bills on paper. 

Adopt digital Menus. This upcoming concept has been adopted by many restaurants- Lord of the drinks (First fiddle restaurants), Slay coffee and Pind Balluchi being a few examples. And guess what, you don’t even have to invest in a computer system or tablet. The diners can open the menu on their phones by just scanning a QR code and you can also cross-sell / up-sell, through these, easily.

3. Water conservation and efficiency

Recycle used water for cleaning and watering plants.

Fix leaky fixtures and install low-flow faucets in toilets and kitchens.

And the most simple way in which you can do your bit for water conservation is by joining NRAI’s initiative called #GlassHalfFull, which instructs the waiters to fill glasses half-full unless otherwise requested by customers.

4. Waste reduction and management

Invest in a tailored and analytics-based inventory management software that is smart enough to inform the management about the excess stock in inventory to maintain efficient inventories, particularly with perishables.

The advanced data analytics solutions in these software help the management to study consumption patterns and arrive at optimal serving solutions and portion sizes. 

Follow government guidelines in segregating and managing waste efficiently to minimize greenhouse gas emissions and reduce your carbon footprint.

And don’t forget to donate the leftover food to local shelters. 

5. Ditch plastics. Go eco-friendly.

Explore alternatives to plastic for packaging, straws, stirrers, bottles, tumblers, and cutlery. The alternatives could be bagasse packaging and cutlery made of wood – just like JustBe café in Bangalore. 

Use eco-friendly paper towels in bathrooms and kitchens.

Consider going back to our roots with banana leaf plates, clay tumblers, and papaya leaf straws.

6. Sustainable interior décor

Use furniture made of biodegradable wood, such as bamboo.

Buy organic cotton only from local sellers. 

Use all-cloth linen, such as tablecloths and napkins.

 

Remember, going eco-friendly is not just the right thing to do. It’s responsible, noble, and selfless. It can also pay-off tangibly. It helps you connect with your millennial customers over a shared cause, to earn their appreciation and repeat patronage. 

According to a recent green dining survey, a total of 65% of customers said that they are willing to pay 10% more to dine at an eco-friendly restaurant. 

Who thought being eco-friendly can result in hiked revenues too? You cannot not go green after reading this.

 

Restaurant Industry Trends that Shaped the Past Decade

This decade saw an array of new trends, from theme-based restaurants and cafes to rise of restaurant tech, third party dining out and food delivery aggregators. Further, emerged many unheard concepts like buffets and cloud kitchens which uplifted the industry and spoiled the consumers for choices, especially in metro cities. 

Trends that dominated the industry in the past decade: 

Online Ordering & the Rise of Food Delivery Aggregators 

 

Keeping up with the smartphone generation, emerged online ordering which offers varied menus & live-tracking. While direct delivery from restaurants is popular, the online food delivery aggregator app space has interesting deals and offers to attract new diners to their platforms. 

Another set of aggregators is the dine-in food aggregators who promote restaurants, cafes and more. These aggregators allow customers to rate and post reviews for a particular restaurant, helping other customers to choose where they want to dine out. Fortunately, food aggregators also allow restaurants to launch offers and discounts online to attract more customers.

Traditionally, dining out was an occasional affair and a luxury for many. Now, it is a trend and at-your-disposal service. This has sprouted the rise of food aggregators and the services they offer. 

Growth of Restaurant Technology

 

With customer centricity being the disruptor, restaurants aim to provide a delightful experience to diners and restaurant tech companies do the same for restaurants. 360-degree restaurant management solutions have emerged as a valuable tool for restaurant owners and managers as they help elevate the customer experience and restaurant sales. Here’s how: 

  • POS software can help  manage billing, order queues, online orders and more
  • Supply Chain Module can help manage inventory, vendors, and minimize wastage
  • Reservation Applications allow customers to book a table from anywhere and arrive later to avoid waiting time
  • Feedback Applications aid in collection of customer feedback and instant grievance redressal 
  • Automated marketing campaigns enable engaging customers online, based on their demographics and other preferences.

Digital Menu Solutions help customers place orders at restaurants directly from their phone and simplify menu alterations, cross-sell and up-sell  for restaurants

Having all this and more in a single connected ecosystem gives the restaurant insights on customer preferences and behaviour to take their experience to the next level.

Casual Dining became the Preferred Dining Choice

 

In the last decade, dining out has become more than an occasional affair. The decade caught glimpses of friends partying and families catching up on gossip at casual dines the most.

Casual dining has emerged as an informal way of eating food and creating memories. Mostly preferred for after-work outings or by college students, these restaurants not only provide scrumptious food but are also easy on the pocket.  People can go out anytime, eat all-day food, and they don’t have to follow a dress code. 

Wellness Warriors Enter the Industry

The restaurant industry has seen a rise in health-conscious consumers following which a trend of wholesome and clean menu choices have emerged with dedicated health-based restaurants. Restaurants can easily take advantage of this trend by modifying recipes and offering options to their customers. And the best part is the food is still tasty!

With so many healthy eating restaurants opening up, dining out is no more equal to counting calories later, but only counting memories! Catching up with the healthy eating trend has never been this easy.

Staying on top of restaurant and food trends will give you an edge over the competition. Whether it’s focusing on healthy ingredients or implementing technology in your restaurant, the bottom line is all about giving consumers what they want. While the growth of the restaurant industry in the past decade may have been unanticipated, it has shaped the way we dine out. Now, it is easier to order in or go out for a meal.