Self-service technology for restaurants
Customers of quick-service restaurants have higher expectations than ever before. They want to be served quickly, but also receive a high standard of customer service. Self-service technologies (SSTs) help restaurants meet these needs by allowing customers to order their own food. But until now, these technologies have been unaffordable for small – and medium-sized businesses.
We believe that businesses of all sizes should be able to use the latest technology and remain competitive. This is why we’re excited to announce that Lightspeed Self-Order Menu (available in Europe and coming soon to North America), the first self-service technology of its kind built for SMBs, is now available for users of Lightspeed Restaurant – our cloud-based management platform designed to help restaurateurs efficiently run and grow their businesses.
Self-Order Menu is a self-service app that brings value to both restaurateurs and patrons. In addition to enabling restaurateurs to increase sales and reduce labor costs, Self-Order Menu also meets customers’ modern needs by giving them control to order their own food and drinks from a touch-screen menu on a stationary iPad kiosk (Kiosk mode) or an iPad on their table (Table mode).
What can Lightspeed Self-Order Menu do for your restaurant?
Enhance the customer experience
1. Reduce customer wait times
Customers don’t want to wait around to get served, especially when visiting quick-service restaurants where, as the name says, service should be quick. Service in these restaurants is actually getting slower – with more complicated menus and bigger orders being a few of the reasons why.
With this application, you can get rid of queues or long waits in your restaurant. With either a self-service kiosk or an iPad interface on their table, customers no longer have to wait in line or for a waiter to assist them – they can place their own orders when they want and pay their bill from a user-friendly interface. By cutting down on wait times, restaurateurs make a visit to their establishment more enjoyable and enhance the overall customer experience.
2. Improve order accuracy
The accuracy of a food order is a benchmark of customer satisfaction. But order errors don’t just risk disappointing your customers; they can even be dangerous where your customers have food sensitivities or allergies. When orders are taken manually, there’s no guaranteed way to mitigate order errors. Orders can get misread, lost and even the most attentive waiters and waitresses can make mistakes when writing or typing them manually.
The good news for restaurant owners is that the Self-Order Menu app can significantly improve the accuracy of your orders. For one, customers order their own dishes, giving them full control of what they order. For another, orders are sent directly from the customer to the kitchen, removing a step from the order process and reducing the margin for error.
3. Increase guest satisfaction
This application can help restaurateurs improve the overall guest experience. First, by having customers place their own orders, wait staff have more freedom to spend time on delivering high-quality customer service. Instead of rushing around the restaurant floor or behind the counter to take the order of every waiting guest, they can take their time with every guest, answering any questions and offering advice on the menu. And they can do this without having to worry about memorizing orders and keeping customers waiting to place an order. As a result, guests receive a higher standard of service, which is both more thorough and more personal.
Second, modern, user-friendly self-service software can help restaurateurs enhance the look and feel of their restaurant for patrons, and give the latter more control over personalizing their order. Not many restaurants, independent establishments in particular, allow customers to walk in and place their food and drinks orders straightaway from an iPad. For many customers, this is an exciting new concept that adds a modern touch to their in-restaurant experience – something which could even drive them through a restaurant’s doors.
What’s more, research has found that millennials, for whom modern technology is an integral part of their daily lives, “appreciate the speed, order accuracy, and convenience of touch screens”. So if millennials are your target customer, this technology will help you satisfy their expectations.
Offer greater control over operations
1. Increase revenue
There are several ways that self-service technology can help businesses increase customer spending. Since deploying the Lightspeed Self-Order Menu app, one Lightspeed customer generated 15% more revenue in beverage consumption. Customers are more likely to buy on impulse when in a self-service environment because they can place an order at any moment on a touch-screen menu without even having to speak to wait staff.
Also, with Self-Order Menu, upselling no longer has to be an afterthought. Without the task of order taking, wait staff has more time to upsell, which involves talking to customers to understand their needs and propose menu items that meet these needs.
2. Help you become a smarter business
Self-Order Menu helps restaurateurs streamline their spending and increase productivity. Hours that would have been spent on taking customer orders can now be used not only to deliver better customer service (as above), but also in other areas of the business, such as in the kitchen, back-office or on marketing the restaurant. Plus, by enabling patrons to place their orders themselves, restaurateurs can offer the same great service with fewer wait staff and save money on increasing labor costs. With the Self-Order Menu, restaurant owners can better allocate their financial resources where they are most needed and get results more quickly, without compromising on any area of their business.
3. Reduce labor costs
The restaurant environment today is known for its fast-paced and customer friendly setting. In the US, the cost of labor is gradually increasing and is expected to hit an all-time high this year. In tandem with rising food costs, businesses look toward reducing operating costs while maintaining a consistent customer experience. The Self-Order Menu Product will be able to assist restaurateurs in streamlining their spending and increase productivity. Hours that would have been spent on taking customer orders can now be used not only to deliver better customer service but also in other areas of the business, such as in the kitchen, back-office or on marketing the restaurant. This way, restaurant owners can better allocate their financial resources where they are most needed and get results more quickly, without compromising on any area of their business.
What do our customers think of Lightspeed Self-Order Menu?
La Ferme Blanche d’Asie is a unique restaurant, based in Belgium, that serves up both Asian and European cuisine. Diners are attracted by the high-quality service and food on offer, and by the unique ordering system. Thanks to the Lightspeed Self-Order Menu they can order their food from an iPad on their table.
La Ferme Blanche d’Asie has found that rather than taking away from the in-restaurant experience, the self-service application, in fact, enhances it. As well as attracting customers through the doors, the application allows customers to see photos of their food prior to ordering. This not only helps customers make the right decision about which dish is right for them but also enables the restaurant to tempt customers to order certain dishes by displaying attractive imagery.
Self-Order Menu has also enabled the restaurant to accelerate the speed of service while continuing to be attentive to customers. All this without the need for additional staff.
“We don’t need a lot of waiters on the floor to offer great service.”
– Ding Zhong Zhang, owner of La Ferme Blanche d’Asie
This is largely down to the fact that customers can now order their own food as quickly as they want and the order is sent directly to the kitchen. This is a real step-up from the previous order model, which involved waiting for a waiter to take an order and then pass it onto the chefs.