While restaurant patrons love the convenience and efficiency of self-serve kiosks, the advantages are even greater for restaurant owners. In addition to the significant benefits satisfied customers brings to a business, a kiosk yields a high ROI, substantially increasing sales and reducing operating costs.
Once only used by giant chains such as McDonald’s and Panera, kiosks have become increasingly affordable. Now the same technology, but at a fraction of the cost, enables small to medium-sized restaurants to stay competitive and offer the best and most efficient experience for their customers.
Studies show that when customers have time to peruse a kiosk and don’t have to interact with a sales clerk, they buy more. In fact, ticket sales for orders placed on touch screens are 10 to 30 percent higher. Why? It may come down to simple psychology. Perhaps the person taking the order doesn’t want to take up the customers time (or make others in line wait) by suggesting add-ons, or is reluctant to give a “sales pitch.” However, a kiosk never forgets to upsell, and with add-ons and promotions easily visible to customers right on the kiosk, customers add on more, resulting in higher revenues.
Kiosks also offer a restaurant’s customers a seamless transition to mobile ordering. Once a kiosk is integrated in a restaurant, it’s easy to introduce a mobile app as an added benefit to customers, opening a new sales channel and source of revenue.
Because of the increase in ticket sales that using kiosks yields, restaurants can make a quick return on their investment. Restaurants can typically expect to see increased revenues of $20,000 to $40,000 within several months of use. Thanks to this increase in sales, in a short period of time, the system has paid for itself and the profits are going straight to the restaurant’s bottom line.
In addition to making more money through increased ticket sales, kiosks provide savings in numerous other ways. They make square footage more efficient by automating the ordering process, freeing up counter space. Restaurants can place kiosks in strategic locations, directing traffic and freeing up more space for dining in customers. They also allow for less staff (a significant benefit since, in 2019, seven out of ten restaurants experienced a labor shortage) and free up existing staff for higher value services that matter more to the customer, including the preparation of their food and keeping the restaurant clean.
Thanks to innovative technology, kiosks are easy to use for both customers and merchants, increasing efficiency. Many can be customized to reflect the restaurant’s brand. Menu items updated on the POS will sync with kiosk, and orders made on kiosk display in real-time on the main POS station.
Again, it’s all about the bottom line. Happy customers equal returning customers, which means more revenue. Increasing customer retention rates by 5 percent increases profits anywhere from 25% to 95%. And according to the Harvard Business Review, it is five to twenty-five times more expensive to acquire a new customer than it is to keep one. In light of these statistics, investing in a kiosk, which pays for itself within two months and increases customer satisfaction and revenue, is a smart business decision.
Food service kiosks also help restaurants learn valuable information about their customers and their spending habits. Merchants can use this date to target promotions, increase sales, deepen customer satisfaction, maximize discounts and add-on offerings, plan more efficiently, and serve their customers more accurately.
In today’s market, an eagerness to embrace technology such as self-serve kiosk to take orders, manage and reduce costs, process payments, and make data driven decisions will equal greater customer satisfaction, increased profits, and financial stability.
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