Mr Yum acquires MyGuestlist and Sprout CRM
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Mr Yum acquires MyGuestlist and Sprout CRM
read more here
Mr Yum acquires MyGuestlist and Sprout CRM
read more here
Mr Yum acquires MyGuestlist and Sprout CRM
read more here
Mr Yum acquires MyGuestlist and Sprout CRM
read more here
Mr Yum acquires MyGuestlist and Sprout CRM
read more here

The impact of mobile ordering platforms on dining establishments

Mobile ordering and payment platforms are more than just a novelty; they're a necessity. We'll look at the impact they've had on the industry as a whole.

QR code menus are an interesting thing, and their rise to prominence is an equally captivating tale. Progress typically moves in a linear fashion; you have a problem that needs to be solved or a desire that needs to be filled, and you develop a solution with a clear goal in mind. 

The history of the QR code is a little more complex. QR codes are the perfect solution just waiting for their moment to shine. That moment has arrived. QR code technology is nothing new, but a thrilling number of new use cases have emerged in recent history, including the need for contactless ordering and payment methods at cafes, pubs, large-scale venues, and other eateries.

Prior to 2020, QR code usage was already on the upswing, but after the sweeping societal changes of the last two years, QR codes have become an integral part of day-to-day life the world over. Globally, QR code usage rose by a respectable 34% during the middle of the 2010s. Across Europe, 72% of all citizens reportedly used QR codes in one form or another at the outset of the COVID pandemic. 

With QR code use rising so dramatically in recent history, it's helpful to look at the true impact that quick response barcodes have had on the restaurant industry in particular. Today we're going to spend some time analysing the effect QR codes have had on a struggling market sector, as well as the dramatic cost of neglecting to integrate them into your business model. 

The positive impact of mobile ordering platforms

QR codes have come a long way since their invention all the way back in the early 1990s. QR codes —otherwise known as quick response codes— were initially conceived by Japanese manufacturer Denso Wave as a means of assisting inventory control in their factories. 

From the very moment they were released for public consumption, QR code technology became a mainstay in the Asian market. Take China for example. For the past two decades, the Chinese have used QR codes as one of the country's primary payment methods. 

Reliance on QR codes in the Chinese market allowed the diminutive barcodes to spread quickly throughout the Pacific region and into Southeast Asia. According to Pymnts.com, 40% of the Indian Peninsula currently uses QR tech, with Vietnam (27%) and Thailand (23%) close behind. It is safe to say that QR codes have had a deep impact on Asia's economy, hitting the equivalent of $1.5 trillionUS per year in combined revenue. Now, QR codes have made the leap overseas. 

In 2020, the United States hit a new milestone regarding QR code usage: more than 11 million individual scans, a radical increase from past years. In a joint study of both the UK and the US conducted the same year, nearly 47% of the populace agreed that QR code usage was soaring. What's driving the sudden surge? QR code menus and ordering and payment platforms. In fact, more than 42% of all respondents stated that they felt comfortable using QR technology as part of the restaurant-going experience. 

Mobile ordering and payments have had a profound impact on the Western World. The result of QR technology's sudden boom? QR code menus are primed to dominate a rapidly changing market. 

Related: The benefits of implementing a mobile web app for restaurant ordering 

Embracing changing customer expectations 

It is safe to say that the food service industry is in a period of great transition. The restaurant experience is changing in ways we never thought possible. Given the industry's current momentum, there's little chance we'll ever return to the way things were. 

QR codes were once considered a novelty, a fun thing that you could do with your cell phone but lacking in a more significant economic purpose; however, the lines have now become blurred. Through the use of digital menus, mobile ordering, and payment platforms, QR codes have changed from a novelty to an expectation.    

The idea of contactless payment has become so enmeshed with the restaurant industry that the average customer has come to expect the convenience of ordering —and paying— via QR barcodes. According to the above-linked Scanova article, Industry experts expect that up to 80% of all point-of-sale services will become contactless no later than 2024. Let's take a look at the benefits of using QR codes and a mobile ordering platform in your venue.  

Hygiene

Right off the bat, QR code menus are more sanitary than their hardcopy counterparts. Given the temperament of the post-COVID world, that's a huge benefit to your business. 

In this day and age, customers have come to expect a sanitary and hygienic experience no matter where they eat. The fewer physical objects —namely menus and money— that change hands, the less chance that patrons and the waitstaff will spread communicable disease. 

Whether you run an intimate cafe, a boisterous pub, or a large-scale franchise, the modern customer expects your establishment to abide by stringent health standards. Contactless ordering and payment via QR codes help you deliver on that promise. 

Increased efficiency

If you were to analyse your day-to-day workflows, what would you say occupies most of your waitstaff's time? Greeting guests? Taking drink orders? Reading daily specials? Order clarification? There are dozens of small transactions that take place over the course of a single meal. And while customer interaction is never a bad thing, too many visits to a patron's table can be disruptive. 

QR code menus help eliminate a good portion of those tasks. Through the use of a mobile ordering and payment platform, customers are given personal agency to order drinks, appetisers, and entrees themselves. In turn, your waitstaff will spend less time clarifying customer orders, meaning fewer mistakes overall. The bottom line? Customers have come to expect staff who focus on deeper, more meaningful customer interactions rather than administrative tasks.  

Additional advantages 

In the current market climate, the technology you use is just as important as the products you offer to your patrons. Not only do patrons come to your establishment looking for a modern, seamless dining experience, but they also expect to receive custom treatment from your staff. The customer experience is, after all, at the heart of the food service industry. 

A robust mobile ordering platform can deliver the exceptional service and attention that your customers have come to expect by linking your QR code digital menus to your customer relationship management (CRM) software.

Each QR scan and resulting interaction can net you an incredible amount of customer data, from purchasing behaviour to in-depth demographic information. In turn, you can run customer loyalty programs and targeted promotions in order to drive repeat business through your doorway.   

Related: How advanced order batching has kicked goals for Little Creatures UK

Maintaining market agility

QR code technology is nothing if not resilient. QR codes have continuously cycled in and out of the public eye since their inception nearly three decades ago. The technology keeps returning because it is both solid and adaptable. It’s easy to find new use cases when the technology beneath is first-rate. 

That said, the winds of change continue to blow through the food service industry. While people still visit restaurants, cafes, pubs, and other types of venues for the same core reasons, i.e. service, a novel experience, and social interaction, the way in which we dine out has changed irrevocably over the last few years. Where the waitstaff once controlled the flow of the meal, the customer now has complete agency.

Through the power and agility of QR codes and mobile ordering platforms, contactless ordering and payment has become the law of the land. These are more than just futuristic novelties; it's what the public expects.

In this context, maintaining market agility means maintaining parity with the competition and preserving your establishment's market share. Businesses that fail to harness new tech, namely QR codes and fully-featured, web-based platforms for ordering, paying, and interacting with their customers, run the risk of being left behind during the next market shift. 

In order to thrive in the post-COVID landscape, it is necessary for restaurant owners to use ALL the tools at their disposal. From QR code digital menus complete with ordering functions to contactless payment methods and beyond, QR code menus have become an indispensable component of the modern eatery. Ready to add a mobile ordering and payment platform to your daily operations? Mr Yum can help you integrate QR technology and more into your existing suite of solutions. Contact us today for more information.   

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