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How Leveraging Mobile Technology Can Enhance the Overall Restaurant Experience

By Nick Nayfack

Mobile technology has a stronghold on the development of small and local merchant operations. According to online legal services firm Rocket Lawyer™, 60 percent of small-business owners surveyed said they would consider adopting some type of mobile or contactless payment in 2015. (1)

Of the majority who said their companies would contemplate mobile payment adoption, more than 68 percent said offering customers a better payment experience was the most effective way new system integration could impact their operation. Close to 40 percent said mobile payments could help them reach new customers.

The restaurant industry in particular seems to be moving toward mobility and mobile point-of-sale systems. A separate Hospitality Technology™ study revealed both enabling new payment options and adding mPOS were the top two business drivers influencing POS upgrades in restaurants this year. As consumers continue to use mobile devices for everyday activities, small businesses - restaurants especially - are also making the shift. (2)

Use new tech to get more diners
The mobile revolution has been quick and aggressive. There's a shift in the paradigm of small-business operations, and the central nervous system of SMB production is now predicated on mobile technology and mPOS systems. These new platforms are often quicker, more efficient and cost effective, giving decision-makers something to consider when contemplating making updates to their network and payment processing infrastructure.

Certain industries are growing more quickly than others, which highlights the need to adopt mobile technology at a faster rate. According to the National Restaurant Association™, the industry will reach $709 billion in sales, 1 million locations and 14 million employees in 2015. (3)

Until now, the restaurant industry has been relatively slow to adopt these technologies. However, a recent Forbes® article highlights a number of cutting-edge functions that are making their way into the restaurant industry:

  • Mobile ordering
  • Ordering through social media
  • Tablet POS
  • Tablet ordering and checkout systems at the table
  • Digital menu boards
  • Mobile-friendly websites where diners can place an order
  • Online coupons. (4)

Where technology comes into play
The vast majority of new tech implementations in the restaurant industry are made to improve the customer dining experience. Whether it's a tablet POS system at the table, a social media page where diners can make orders online or on a mobile-friendly website that enables customers to browse the menu and complete a purchase, technology is improving the restaurant industry. 

Restaurant owners seem to be confident of their new investments as well. Rocket Lawyer™ data found just 30 percent of respondents believed customers wouldn't use mobile payments, meaning close to 7 in 10 respondents felt like consumers would embrace any new technological upgrades within the business infrastructure.(1)

Not only does new mobile technology and mPOS help restaurants reach their customers better and in a more meaningful way, it acts as a market differentiator. Thirty-seven percent of Rocket Lawyer™ respondents felt cutting-edge mobile technology would offer new opportunities to compete. The mobile revolution is leading to better diner engagement and higher table turns. (1)

1. Rocket Lawyer, http://www.marketwired.com/press-release/rocket-lawyer-semi-annual-smb-index-reveals-overwhelming-optimism-for-2015-1985205.htm (Jan. 22, 2015)

2. Hospitality Technology, http://hospitalitytechnology.edgl.com/news/POS-Software-Trend-Report-201597065 (Dec. 11, 2014)

3. National Restaurant Association, http://www.restaurant.org/News-Research/Research/Forecast-2015 (Jan. 27, 2015)

4. Forbes, http://www.forbes.com/sites/caroltice/2012/12/07/how-restaurants-are-using-technology-to-deliver-better-customer-service/ (Dec. 7, 2012)

Forbes®, Rocket Lawyer™, National Restaurant Association™, and Hospitality Technology™ are registered or unregistered marks belonging to one or more unaffiliated third parties that do not endorse or sponsor Vantiv Integrated Payments, LLC.


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