The impact of technology in the gastronomic and hospitality sector
Today we are very used to being able to choose between millions of Options and have it all at the moment with just the effort of a click. In a digital world like the one we live in, waiting long lines to eat at a restaurant, or not being able to access infinite information, photos and comments about it when choosing, is somewhat crazy.
Digitization has had an impact on user behavior and this has affected the way in which restaurants must communicate with them, the channels to use, the models of management of reservations, etc. to meet your expectations, meet your needs and stand out from the competition.
What is the new digital consumer like?
La technology is changing the way that restaurants they work, both internally in the processes, and working models, such as facing the public, in the way in which they publicize, communicate and interact with their public.
Today, customers are volatile, curious, and looking for unique experiences. They know what they want and have a lot of options to find it, so they are very demanding and not very loyal. Also, the way in which they search, reserve or communicate with restaurants It is totally different, being very common today that they do it through social networks or mobile applications.
How has this new behavior affected restaurants?
Technological platforms for management reservations and other processes
Calling a restaurant asking for availability and booking is part of the past. Today it is very common that it can be done directly from the web or a mobile app, in no more than several seconds. The user wants ease, agility and security when making their reservations.
With the new software for restaurants, all the reservation processes, management inventory, reporting, etc. can be done centrally, automatically and efficiently, to staff to focus on what's really important: offer a unique experience and service to your audience.
POS (Point of Sale Terminal)
POS terminals are digital devices that help manage everything related to sales, such as card payment, tickets and invoices, inventory management, etc.
These devices streamline sales processes, allow greater control over them, have more reliable data on business profitability, better stock management, more precise monitoring of the tickets made by each worker, etc. Implementing a POS is really beneficial, since they facilitate and speed up tasks a lot, thus offering a more professional image and better customer service, and above all, helping the business to be more efficient and profitable.
Online communication tools and mobile apps
According to a recent Expansion article, 43% of users order online from the comfort of their home, and this percentage is increasing. More and more people use apps to access products and services, as they make order management much easier, not only for the user but for the restaurants themselves.
Among other benefits are being able to be more productive, since orders are received directly in the kitchen without the need for human interaction and without waiting. The apps also serve to connect with the customer through offer notifications, new menus, etc.
Another communication channel on the rise is social networks, which play a key role in the user experience. The RRSS are an excellent way to promote your business and connect with your audience, being able to segment and reach the one that really interests you. It is an open communication channel in which you can establish a dialogue with the user, allowing not only you but they also report on your brand or with your brand.
The millennials They live glued to the phone and it is natural for them to instantly share their experiences and opinions about them. It is not strange to go to his Instagram and see it full of brunches, dinners and drinks in the fashionable restaurants and bars of the city.
If these posts have positive connotations, it may be the action of marketing more effective for you, a “digital tip”. Users highly value the publications, references and reviews that their friends or acquaintances leave in the RRSS and it will be what drives them to also go to the mentioned establishment.
The biggest challenges for restaurants
Being able to adapt a business to this new digital environment also faces certain challenges, among which stand out a lack of budget to implement tools, the difficulty in finding qualified staff and lack of time or again, budget, to train current workers.
There is also resistance to change, and many businesses prefer to continue with a pen and paper so as not to face the insecurity created by changing habits and by not having a guaranteed return on that investment ...
What does the future hold?
In the restoration, as in other sectors, the benefits that the implementation of technology brings to the business are being demonstrated, and there is an increase in investment due to the implementation of digital tools.
In a competitive market, keeping up to date in terms of innovation is key to being ahead of the competition, implementing those tools that favor cost reduction, increased productivity and business effectiveness, and improved communication, relationship and customer loyalty.
Of course, in the process we must not forget that identity, values and business authenticity is also very important to differentiate ourselves in the market, and therefore it is important to implement changes that respect them and progressively.
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