As online ordering continues to gain popularity in the restaurant industry, it’s easy to see why so many restaurants are choosing to focus their operations on online ordering. It’s simple and effective and it’s exactly what customers want restaurants to offer. The following are some of the top trends in restaurant online ordering for 2016.
Social media is one of the most popular trends in the world today, and it’s not hard to understand why so many businesses and restaurant are choosing to increase their presence on social media. More and more restaurants are using social media to promote their business and connect directly with their customers. It’s a great way to advertise your specials and show off pictures of the food.
It comes as no surprise, but for just about everything in the world today, there exists an app to help you do it. When it comes to online ordering, apps help make it so much easier for both the customer and the business. Since the majority of online ordering takes place on phones, it makes sense to offer an app for your customers to use instead of making them go on the website. This helps speed up the ordering process for the customers and it makes it easier on business to have the orders sent directly to them.
After your customer has ordered with you a couple times or even just one time, you can start to look at their orders to learn what they like to order. The more times they order from you, the better idea you’ll have of what exactly they like. Once you know this, you can start to suggest different things for them to try based on that. If you notice somebody orders a type of breadstick every time and your restaurant just launched a new breadstick type, then you can suggest they order that.
Predictive ordering is a complete game changer for restaurants because it allows you to suggest food to your customers like you would usually do in a store. But this time, you’re doing it through a website or app without any face to face interaction and you can suggest something that you know they would be interested in. Predictive ordering is a great way to drive sales.
Decline In Phone Ordering
As technology advances and more and more people start to use computers and mobile technology, there’s been a huge decline in phone ordering at places. Most people prefer to send in their order via a website or an app because it makes it so much easier to place your order. You don’t have to worry about your order being misunderstood and getting the wrong food and you don’t have to worry about actually talking to someone. Simply hop on your computer and just like that, you can place an order.
Increase In Delivery Orders
There has also been a trend in ordering that leads to a lot more delivery orders than people going in the restaurant to pick up the food and it’s not hard to see why. Online ordering has taken off due to the convenience and ease of the process. What’s more convenient than having food delivered to your door? Well, nothing really. People are so busy now that they don’t like to take time out of their day to do things they don’t have to do. So when it comes to ordering food, they’ll gladly take the option of having it delivered to their door.
Lower Prices Due To More Competition
With more businesses entering the online space, there’s a big increase in the amount of competition that restaurants face on a daily basis. With more competition and more places to order from, there has been a big decrease in prices to try and stay ahead of the competition. Once one place offers a discount, the next place decides to offer the same (or better) discount to attract more customers. As a result, the prices continue to drop over time and benefits the customer.
It seems as if you’re hard pressed to find a restaurant that doesn’t offer a loyalty program of some sort. Whether they offer you a reward after spending a certain amount of money or give you a free food item after you buy so many of that food item, loyalty programs are increasingly popular. The reason for that? They work. On average restaurants who use a loyalty program see a 20% increase in the frequency of visits to their restaurant and a 7% increase in the total sale price when those people come into their restaurant. Simply put, loyalty programs are a great way to drive sales.
As you can tell, there are a lot of different trends when it comes to online ordering for restaurants and there is a huge shift of businesses switching to online ordering. If you closely pay attention to these trends and begin to adapt your business to them, you’ll experience more success than you thought possible.
Rafi Cohen, a graduate of Baruch College & Brooklyn native is the Co-Founder @ Orders2me, an online ordering platform that gives restaurant owners all the features they need to grow their business in the digital age.
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We are on a mission to help local restaurants thrive in the new digital economy. Our blog is designed to give local restaurants best practices from some of the top restaurants in the world today.