How important is customer convenience in the grand calculus of the restaurant industry? According to a recent Deloitte survey, 43% of respondents said that being delighted was the key to a great customer experience, while 46% said being engaged by staff was critical to their satisfaction. 45% cited being heard, while 37% said having their preferences honoured was the most important aspect of customer service. In short, customer convenience is at the heart of the food service industry.
The question then becomes, "How do we deliver phenomenal convenience to our customers?" One specific method is through restaurant bill splitting apps. Let's take an in-depth look at how the typical dining experience has evolved over the years, using the emergence of a robust set of payment options, including restaurant bill splitting apps, as the focal point.
Restaurant bill splitting apps and the anatomy of traditional payments
To understand where the industry is headed, it pays to first understand its evolution over the years. Let's begin by taking an in-depth look at the anatomy of the typical dining experience as seen through the eyes of customers and patrons.
How is the typical restaurant visit structured? Think back to the last time you and your friends or family went out to eat. Think about the high points of your experience and the low points. Hopefully food, fun, and the feeling of togetherness were the representative moments. Due to the way that the traditional experience is built, however, there exists the potential for logistical snarls, especially where the meal's pacing is concerned. Let's pick the experience apart.
Even the most efficient, well-oiled restaurant suffers from gaps in the customer experience. For example, between being seated, being provided a menu, and having your drink order taken, there often exists a dead space before the waitstaff comes back to address you and take your food order. A similar gap exists on the back end. There can be numerous starts and stops between the end of the meal and settling the check. Much like quantum physics, the very act of paying using a physical tender can affect the flow of the meal.
If you pay with a physical credit card, you have to wait for the staff to run your card, then bring the receipt back to your table for you to sign. Paying with cash disrupts the flow to an even greater extent. You've got to wait for the employee to make change before moving on to the tip portion.
While none of the above aspects are dealbreakers in and of themselves, there's no denying that they subtly detract from the overall customer experience. Customers come in with a variety of circumstances, and not all of them have the time to wait around for the traditional processes to play out.
Whether it’s colleagues trying to grab lunch and get back to work or parents coming in with a toddler that strongly objects to the entire visit, modern hospitality means being ready to accomodate your guests in these situations. Fortunately, digital payment methods and restaurant bill splitting apps can help your establishment take the wrinkles out of the equation.
What is a restaurant bill splitting app, exactly?
We'd be remiss if we didn't clarify exactly what we mean by a restaurant bill splitting app. This type of tech integrates directly with your restaurant's POS system, enabling customers to not only pay their bill digitally, but also to exert a high level of control over the payment process itself.
With a restaurant tech platform that integrates bill splitting, separate checks are a thing of the past. Customers are free to divide the bill in whatever way they see fit. Whether you split it between two parties or twenty, bill splitting apps give customers control over the process. Advanced bill splitting apps are even capable of handling multi-vendor orders at large-scale venues. Customers make their purchase at whatever stand(s) they desire, then checkout on a single transaction.
Bill splitting apps and how the customer benefits
Restaurant bill splitting apps are a key piece of tech that can help your venue create more efficient processes and workflows. Don't take our word for it, however. Let's spend a minute analysing the benefit that bill splitting apps provide to your customers.
Bill splitting apps are part of a robust array of payment options
Options are part and parcel of superior customer service. The more payment options that you extend to your customers, the better. An establishment that's firing on all cylinders is one that offers both physical payment options and digital ones, complete with a high level of customisation.
They provide the customer with meaningful self-service options
More and more, customers are looking for both a contactless and frictionless dining experience. According to FSR Magazine, 79% of all restaurant goers across the globe have used digital payment methods. Restaurant bill splitting apps take that idea one step further by enabling customers to handle the check process themselves. Not only does this promote the idea of a frictionless experience, it also allows customers to control the pace of the meal at an especially critical juncture.
They are an important element in a positive customer experience
Never underestimate the power of a positive customer experience. It's what keeps customers loyal to your brand.
An experience that addresses the needs and values of your core clientele is one that will leave an indelible mark. Bill splitting apps help accomplish this by giving your customer precisely what they want. They’re left with the lasting impression of a smooth, streamlined experience when they visited your establishment, which makes it an easy decision to return again next time.
Bill splitting apps and how venues benefit
When it comes to customer advantage, there's no shortage of benefits to implementing a bill splitting app into your establishment's tech array, but what about the benefits to your eatery itself? Let's take a look at what you stand to gain by offering customers bill splitting options.
Bill splitting apps increase your process efficiency
Automation of any kind serves one overarching purpose: to improve your establishment's process efficiency. By taking the element of human error out of the equation, you reduce time and effort spent adjusting and settling bills. In turn, this bolsters the quality of the patrons' experience, while improving your brand in the process.
They free your waitstaff to better engage with customers
Speaking of time spend, how would you rather allocate your human resources? Working at a cash register in an attempt to reconcile transactions, or face to face with your customers providing stellar customer service?
Restaurant bill splitting apps help offload mechanical tasks from your waitstaff, freeing them to interact with customers in more meaningful and sincere ways. The result is an improved bottom line accompanied by better customer outcomes.
Bill splitting tech helps attract younger demographics
According to a recent Forbes article, 53% of Gen Z and 50% of Millennials have come to rely on payment splitting functions to help offset the rising cost of goods and services worldwide. They see an improved array of options as a necessary part of their dining experience. Tap into that zeitgeist by offering bill splitting options, and watch as you attract new demographics to your establishment.
It nets you repeat business from your customer base
The more simple and user-friendly you make the customer experience, the more often those customers will return to your establishment. If you address the needs and values of your core clientele, you'll foster an elevated sense of loyalty that will in turn keep your business moving forward and growing.
Implementing a bill splitting app in your establishment
The modern customer prizes both convenience and a superior level of customer service, but today’s dining experience is more than friendly faces and a warm, inviting atmosphere. It is a venue that addresses customer preferences and needs through a diverse array of technological innovation. Bill splitting apps are one such innovation responsible for driving the industry forward. To learn more about how to implement bill splitting technology into your tech stack, contact the experts at Mr Yum today.