There is no denying that technology has had a major influence on a lot of things. It has made everyday life more convenient, entertaining and organized. It has also had a major influence on a number of industries, including the casual dining industry. Although some may feel that it is hard to innovate an entire industry; technology is doing so one restaurant at a time.
Technology is changing the way that customers experience the casual dining industry. Many restaurants have been offering deals and discounts on their apps for quite some time.
However, many modern casual dining locations are now offering in-app purchases and pay-at-table purchases. Many fast food chains now tote kiosks inside of the restaurants as well. These kiosks allow customers to cut the lines and place their order digitally. These features make the dining experience more convenient for the customer. A pizza chain in the UK called Pizza Express found that 67% of customers dislike waiting for the bill. As a result, the UK retail industry suffered a major loss in sales, which totaled out at approximately €16.3 billion. This is a huge amount of potential sales being washed down the drain.
Although it can be hard to tell what the future holds for technology in the casual dining industry, some companies are trying to create their own path. A handful of companies are trying to integrate the Facebook Messenger app into the pay-at-table method of dining. Facebook Messenger has approximately 1.3 billion people using the app monthly. This is an extremely large audience that not many companies are utilizing. However, some are planning on integrating it into the casual dining experience. The UK hamburger chain Byron, is the first company to officially use the Facebook Messenger payment chatbot in the dining experience. Although it is still in its early stages, the program is quite innovative for the casual dining industry.
“We have previously provided our customers with the ability to pay and leave when they want via our own app. This latest innovation using Facebook Messenger further decreases the friction for giving our guests control in how they choose to pay,” said Steve de Polo, the managing director at Byron. “We’re proud to be the first to roll out this service, and are in the process of making it available across our restaurants.”
Technology has an undeniable influence on all aspects of life. We work with technology, we entertain ourselves with technology and we learn with technology. However, many still find it foreign when they put food and technology together when on the contrary, this is not the case. The casual food industry has been highly influenced by technology over the past few years. From convenient kiosks to the future of pay-at-table dining, there is no stopping technology’s influence on the casual dining industry.
For more information about how technology is influencing the casual dining industry, feel free to contact the experts at Spark.