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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!

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. 

How is technology helping restaurants increase reservations and revenue?

 

Your restaurant has finger-licking good food, great ambience, and you have also managed to get an excellent location for your restaurant, but so have the other 10 in the industry.

In such a highly competitive market, it’s imperative to lock-in as many customers as possible.

How can you do that, you ask?

That’s what we have technology for – to make your life simple and operations more efficient.

Whether you like it or not, technology is impacting your business, both inside and outside your restaurant’s walls. With Restaurant Technology evolving at a rapid pace, new trends are coming your way every week. It is essential to keep up with these to cater to your smart customers and remain at the top of the game.

In today’s fast-paced world, 45% of regular customers in restaurants are becoming more and more used to technology that is expected to simplify and speed up the entire transaction procedure. 

While there are hundreds of products in the market, it is vital to identify the products that are making an impact on the industry while being a good fit for your restaurant. Here’s how you can leverage Tech-based Restaurant Management products to bag more revenue: –

Leveraging Customer Data to Boost Sales

With applications like reserve and feedback, one can tap into customer data and map customer trends.

With this data, you, as the restaurant manager, can analyse customer behavior, preferences, patterns, and profitably utilize them by curating precisely the type of customer experience your diners are seeking.

Reduce Table Turnaround Time to Maximise Footfall

Reserve apps allow restaurants to manage their reservations and walk-ins most effectively from a single screen. Furthermore, 

  • There is no need to run around across the floors to find out the status of tables &
  • These apps create an efficient restaurant staff, thus saving a lot of time.

The restaurant can now seat more number of diners per day by improving the table turn around time, thereby increasing revenue.

Switch to Digital Menu to Save Costs & Cross / Up-sell Items

By switching to a digital menu from a paper menu, the restaurateurs can save a lot of cost.

Here’s how:

  • Each time you have a small change or a seasonal menu change, it saves on reprinting cost.
  • You can increase sales by cross-selling and up-selling through combos and offers.
  •  Table turn-around time is improved, so you can now seat more diners per day.

The smart menu recommends diners the dishes that the restaurant wants to sell specifically, and by strategizing it right, the restaurant can influence the customers’ decisions and sell them their most profit-generating items.

 

Instant Grievance Redressal to Avoid Bad Word of Mouth

With the digital feedback forms, the top management can instantly be notified of the feedback and the table number from where it has come. If it’s a bad review, the manager can instantly gratify the diner by giving him a discount or sending a free beer at his table.

How can a happy tummy spread bad word of mouth on social media or otherwise?

You just bagged yourself some happy customers!

 

Running the Right Loyalty Program to Keep them Coming Back

If your restaurant is on your diners’ favourite list, you must make them feel that they are important to you too. When you reward them, you give them a reason to visit you again!

And that’s how you can make your new customers your regulars too!

With the Campaigns Module, spread the word about your special offers and deals so they won’t be able to resist coming back. Who doesn’t like discounts, right?

 

Upgrading your technology may feel daunting, but it’s more than necessary for the success of your business.

You need to identify the correct management solution or a combination of them for your restaurant, and nothing can stop you from being on top of the charts.

You will thank us later!

Why Your Loyalty Program is Not Creating Loyal Customers?

As consumers, haven’t we all gone crazy over black Friday sales and discount coupons on our favorite brands? That’s exactly what your customers are seeking when they visit your restaurant for their favorite food! Hit their right spot, and they become loyal to your brand forever. And choosing the right loyalty program is your way to go!

In 2016, the restaurant market was worth more than 3.09 lakh crores, and the food-service industry is expected to grow to a whopping 5 lakh crores in 2021, at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 10%.

In a booming market, losing customers is a cold pie nobody wants to eat. Given that, retaining customers can  actually boost profits by 25%, which makes it doubly crucial to retain existing customers. This is where the loyalty programs sweep in.

Steps to create an engaging loyalty program:

Loyalty programs have proved to be a good way to make customers visit your restaurant over and over again. They have to appeal to the customers on a personal level.
The tech-savvy generation might not be quite thrilled with the coupon loyalty programs as much. So how does one build an upgraded loyalty program that appeals to the customers and drives sales?
As per the statistics of Aron Allen and Associates, coffee giant Starbuck’s ‘My Starbucks Rewards Loyalty Program’ was launched in 2010. It later added a digital component and went on to garner $1.2 billion in customer funds as of the first quarter of 2016. In 2017 the second quarter rewards accounted for 36 % of US Starbucks sales.

Identify the Right Program

Loyalty programs impact profits and need to be structured in a way that suits your business model. Be it visit based, spend based, or a combination of the two.

The QSR Magazine reports say that Panera introduced a tech-driven ‘integrated guest experience’ at an outlay of $42 million in 2012. The tech boosted sales, reduced the food receiving time to less than five 5 minutes from 6-9 minutes, and saved 1 – 4 minutes per order.

Make the Best Use of Data

There is nothing like the effective use of customer data to make a good loyalty program work great for your business.
Guest and Reserve apps, available in the market, enable you to deep-dive into the customers’ past visits and orders, their preferences in terms of dish preparation, seating arrangements, and so on.
You can also tag your customers in your system so that the arrival of a priority customer does not catch you on the wrong foot. Customers who visit your restaurant also receive promotional offers and feedback communications.
These apps have the analytics feature to generate insights on average waiting time, optimal table layouts, and more to help your brand get a competitive edge.

As per the statistics provided by the National Restaurant Association, tech is the rage for millennials with 32% factoring it in their choice of QSRs and 28% factoring in for their choice of full-service restaurants.

Keep It Easy with Feedback Apps

Feedback Apps cut out paper hassles and let you focus on the feedback that is valuable for your business. With these apps, you can get better insights on customer preferences. A bad experience can easily be neutralized on the spot with a great feedback app.
A contemporary, seamless feedback app integrated with your loyalty program will be simple, highly customizable, and give you insights on customer behavior for smarter marketing. Further, it will enable you to enhance the customer experience in different ways to win positive online and social media reviews.

36% of diners factor in information from review sites like Trip Advisor and Yelp, while 34% use social media information in their decisions.

Keep Your Staff in the loop

Well executed loyalty programs have one thing in common – a well-informed staff. Even if your loyalty program uses all the bells and whistles that go with the app, you just cannot afford to miss out on the human element.

So, before you roll out your loyalty program, take your staff into confidence, and seek their inputs. Your staff may be able to give you amazing insights into various aspects of customer behavior, preferences, etc., and their suggestions might prove to be extremely valuable for the success of your loyalty program.

Reward Programs are profitable for every business

Reward programs offered by restaurants drive traffic, track customer spending habits, help delight existing customers, and convert them to long-term customers. Be it a massive multi-outlet business or a small stand-alone one, every restaurant should offer a loyalty program to accelerate their business through repeat customers.

A well-planned loyalty program will let your customers relax, knowing that they’ll always earn more rewards – without taking a hit to their wallet. And for you, you can rest assured that your existing customers will be your everlasting ones.