Successful restaurant operators understand that squeezing out a one or two percent profit margin depends mostly on the level of customer service. Although many restaurant operators devise ways to enhance customer service, they inevitably create more steps for their servers. The goal of a restaurant operator should be to minimize service steps, whether the operators eliminate running sidework or update seating charts to consolidate server stations. One recent service enhancement innovation involves upgrading restaurant point of sale systems to incorporate mobile computing technology. Mobile POS trends in the restaurant industry not only produce faster payment processing, but also include the capability of customers to find and review restaurants from their mobile devices.
No More Waiting to Pay
Nothing turns off restaurant patrons more than having to wait to pay for their meals. Servers drop off the bills in stylish checkbooks and do not return for several minutes to pick up the payment. Then, it takes servers another five or more minutes to process the payments. Immobile POS terminals that restaurant operators strategically locate throughout their restaurants represent the primary cause of slow payment processing times.
The Most Significant Trend: Paying at the Table
On a busy Saturday night, servers can run three or four deep at each POS terminal waiting to place orders and process payments. Mobile POS systems allow servers to accept, process, and present payments to customers at each table in the restaurant. They no longer have to wait to use a POS terminal and they save time by not having to walk all over the restaurant. Mobile POS systems provide servers with handheld devices that include a magnetic strip reader to process credit cards. Moreover, paying at the table ensures customers that their credit cards never leave the table. Restaurants that utilize mobile POS systems report their servers spend more time doing what is most important: providing impeccably timed service and selling more menu items.
How Management Benefits
Freeing up more time for servers to interact with customers means restaurant managers can expect their restaurants to grow sales. In addition to more customers walking through their doors, restaurant managers benefit from implementing mobile POS systems in other ways. Mobile POS system software often includes the latest data that tracks hourly sales, daily and monthly inventory, and shift labor costs. Managers also receive more accurate real-time data counts by using mobile POS systems. Restaurant managers can expect future innovations to include data that describes customer behavior. The data should prompt savvy restaurant owners to inform their servers and bartenders of customer menu preferences and special service requests.
According to a comScore report released in February 2013, nearly 134 million Americans owned a smartphone. That number represents a staggering 10 percent increase since November 2012. This means a vast majority of potential customers find your business by accessing your website via their mobile devices. According to recent research released by Limelight Networks, over 80 percent of customers abandon a mobile website because they had horrible user experiences.
How Mobile Customers Find You
Mobile restaurant customers search local online business directories to find restaurants that appeal to them. Your restaurant should rank high in local searches, as well ass present a comprehensive listing in several prominent online directories. Once customers find you online via their mobile devices, they want full access to your restaurant website, as well as the capability to navigate quickly through the pages and download apps that include current menu promotions. Your mobile restaurant website should include less content, more white space, and little, if any, animation. Since most restaurant customers on the go want to know what you have to offer, your menu should be the focal point of your mobile website.
Mobile devices also give users an outlet to post restaurant instant reviews. The moment they walk out the door, they go online to describe their dining experiences with you. Ensure your restaurant receives the highest compliments by installing a wireless mobile POS system in your restaurant. Our team of highly trained professionals knows exactly what features to suggest that meet the needs of your operations. We teach you how to upload your floor plan to your mobile POS system, track bar inventory in real time, and receive instant customer feedback. Consult with one of your mobile POS experts today to learn how your restaurant can turn an unhappy customer into a loyal, lifelong patron of your business.