From XU Magazine, 
Issue 29

Discover the New Self-Ordering Paradigm of the Restaurant Industry

From an independent cafe to a QSR chain, discover how digital self-ordering kiosks and QR code ordering solutions facilitate multi-channel revenue, operational automation, and a beautiful customer experience.
This article originated from the Xero blog. The XU Hub is an independent news and media platform - for Xero users, by Xero users. Any content, imagery and associated links below are directly from Xero and not produced by the XU Hub.
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Over the past decade, there has been a paradigm shift in the F&B industry – not only in the way restaurants serve their customers but also in the way customers would like to be served. Technology solution providers have been quick to innovate solutions that adhere to this evolving behaviour while disrupting the industry.

Digital self-ordering offers guests the ease and convenience of ordering independently with just a few taps. Kiosks allow guests to skip lines, and simply order and pay in minutes, on a beautiful, intuitive interface. Through QR code ordering, guests can scan a QR code at the counter or at their table to browse a digital menu, and order and pay directly on their own phones. Contactless, hassle-free! While these self-ordering solutions weren’t entirely new, there’s no denying that the pandemic was a catalyst that accelerated their popularity and growth in demand.

Leading POS systems offer a fully-integrated solution to automate the merchant’s operational workflow – from order placement to fulfillment. Plus, they facilitate the ease of opening a new revenue channel in a matter of minutes, and saves time and costs. Furthermore, these solutions have a high focus on the customer experience, empowering guests to be in total control of placing and customizing their orders.

Create a beautiful ordering experience

With digital self-ordering channels at your restaurant, you can empower your customers to place orders independently and customize them at their own pace and liking. They can order and pay with just a few taps on a beautiful and intuitive Kiosk. Or can scan a QR code to browse your digital menu, and order and pay from the convenience of their own phones. No menu cards or paper receipts; no contact, no hassle. It’s quick, convenient, and contactless. 

Reduce waits times and bust queues

Bust queues at the counter during busy hours by offering guests the ease and flexibility of self-ordering. Let your customers avoid crowds and skip long lines to place orders quickly and conveniently at their fingertips. Give them the assurance of safe and socially-distanced ordering, while reducing wait times, increasing overall customer satisfaction and keeping them coming back.

Increase throughput and speed of service

With faster turnaround times, you can serve more guests in less time. Restaurant self-ordering solutions tremendously increase speed of service. Thus increasing your sales and throughput. Plus, your customers will love being in control of their ordering experience–from placing and customizing orders to fulfilment. It’s a win win.

Improve order accuracy and efficiency

Self-ordering significantly reduces the risk of errors. With guests ordering independently through the Kiosk or on their own devices, there’s no back-and-forth with cashiers. This saves time, eliminates the risk of missed orders, and improves order accuracy and customer satisfaction.

Empower staff to add more value to your business

As customers place orders on their own, your cashiers can focus on the overall customer experience. Free up staff from manual order taking and empower them to add more value to your business by channeling their efforts towards tasks that boost sales and customer experience. 

Plus, save big on labor costs. With self-ordering solutions, you can serve more customers in less time without the need to increase your headcount, and keep your labor costs and operating expenses in control.

Maximize revenue with strategic marketing levers

Grow your restaurant revenue with strategic marketing levers, advertising opportunities, and more. Increase average check size with intuitive upsell and cross-sell prompts such as upgrades, extra paid toppings, combos and add-ons.

Drive sales with fun and effective ads displayed during checkout to promote a new item or introduce a special offer. With a custom idle screen image, you can strategically display eye-catching offers and promos to attract customers and elevate in-store branding.

Automate operations with a one-stop solution

Leading self-ordering solutions are fully-integrated with the POS and complete restaurant management suite for an automated operational workflow. Orders placed on the Kiosk or through mobile phones are sent directly to the Kitchen Display System (KDS) and Token Screen for effortless order fulfilment.

It also works in sync with the Inventory system, so stock is automatically deducted in real time and is always up to date. And if you need to update your menu or mark an item as unavailable, you can easily make changes in real time.

Gain business intelligence & analytics

With a one-stop solution, sales data from your self-ordering channels are in sync with your Dashboard. You can get insights and analytics into your restaurant’s multi-channel performance in one powerful LIVE dashboard, eliminating end-of-day manual reconciliation.

Best-selling items, item profitability, outlet profitability, are a few of the many insights you gain – even on the go. With comprehensive reports and daily business summary, you can identify and analyze trends, compare in-house and self-ordering channel performance, and make informed business decisions.

Seamlessly integrate with Xero

Leading restaurant management systems are integrated with cloud accounting software like Xero. This means that daily sales data from your POS and self-ordering channels are automatically synced to your Xero accounting system. The out-of-the-box integration simplifies and streamlines your restaurant accounting and removes the need for manual entry and end-of-day reconciliation. So you spend less time on your accounting, and more on growing your business.

To summarize, digital self-ordering through Kiosks and QR codes is more than just a trend of the new normal F&B landscape. Not only does it align with the ever-evolving consumer behaviour for its unparalleled flexibility and convenience, but it also empowers merchants with new revenue channels and future-proof business solutions.

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