Mobile payment technology and some even more innovative solutions are quickly gaining popularity in America’s restaurants. Due to increasing consumer demand for speed and convenience, casual sit-down restaurants are struggling to maintain ground in their battle against fast-casual chains like Chipotle, Panera Bread, and Five Guys Burgers and Fries. Technology offers a lucrative opportunity for restaurants to reduce the time it takes to seat guests, serve them, and accept payment.
At the same time, consumers are becoming ever more willing to use technology before, during, and after their dining experiences. This trend allows restaurants to experiment with apps that save even more time. Some restaurants use third-party options, while others develop their own apps.
One restaurant taking advantage of technology is Poquito Mas, a small California chain of 10 Mexican-style restaurants. Poquito Mas offers not only in-store smartphone payments, but also mobile ordering and payments over a third-party provider. According to Owner Kevin McCarney, “[Technology] has become part of everyone’s daily life, and this is just the beginning.”
“We are in the hospitality business, and today our guests use technology to connect to friends, to the world and to us as restaurants,” McCarney said—and he’s not wrong. According to the National Restaurant Association (NRA) in its 2015 Restaurant Industry Forecast, 35 percent of customers are more likely to use technology while dining than they were in 2014, while only 12 percent of consumers never use technology while dining.
In the same NRA report, 24 percent of all adults and 33 percent of those ages 18-34 say that technology is important while choosing to dine at a table-service restaurant. That’s an important demographic that your restaurant may not be able to afford to lose.
What should you do about it? Follow the lead of restaurants like Poquito Mas and BJ’s Restaurant and Brewhouse, which we wrote about in this article. Begin offering NFC-supported terminals for smartphone users. You may even want to develop and app like BJ’s Restaurants, or at least take advantage of one of the many great third-party app.
It’s easier than ever for restaurants to take advantage of technologically advanced service, so why not begin now? Visit www.PayProTec.com and talk to a representative to find out how we can find the perfect solutions for your business.