Technology has and continues to touch every facet of our lives. From the emergence of mobile devise to cloud computing, technology is making more of an impact in our business ventures. It’s nearly impossible to go anywhere without finding a high-tech piece of hardware or software around. These technical advances have made an impact everywhere, but especially in the food industry. At the very least, the innovation of technology plays an integral role in the development of the restaurant reservation system which most food service establishments are utilizing to the maximum.
Key Features of the Best Restaurant Reservation Systems
Digitizing the Food Service Industry
Over the years, we have witnessed the evolution of the traditional dining experience due to the strong technological influence on the restaurant industry. From reserving restaurant tables and chairs, to wine pairing and inventory control, technology is designed to elevate customer dining experience. iPads are progressively being used to order meals and pay the bill while wireless headsets enable staff to communicate better, allowing the entire dining experience to run smoothly. These various technology trends have been seemingly embraced by patrons and restaurateurs alike and are currently being used to upgrade restaurant booking systems among many other things.
Conforming to Hi-Tech Adjustments
Between the arrivals of online reservations, utilization of social media, development of mobile devices on the table and new payment methods, technology has infiltrated and taken the food industry by force to a certain extent. While most of these advances serve to improve customer relations as well as dining experience for both the restaurant and patron, each development presents its unique challenges. And with technologies fast pace evolving nature, these challenges may seem insurmountable at times. Consequently, the success of a restaurant as well as the fate of its business is determined by how the industry deals with these advances and the challenges accompanying them.
A report by National Restaurant Association shows that 40 percent of adult patrons are likely to utilize a smartphone app if it were developed and offered by a quick service restaurant. Similarly, the report also shows that 32 percent of adults would use a mobile or wireless payment option offered to them by a full-service restaurant.
Transfiguration of Restaurant Reservations
Restaurant reservations began with managers, hosts or other staff answering phone calls and penciling, names, times and dates with paper. This method consumed a lot of the host’s and staff members’ time which could have otherwise been used to clear tables and tend to customers. With the convenience of technology, however, internet is more accessible to people and companies are given the incentive to develop several restaurant reservation software to make the process faster and easier. This software allows for the inception of restaurant reservation online systems which many restaurants feature on their websites or made through a third party reservation service. Features of a restaurant system may vary by restaurant, its location, staff, and foot traffic.
Maximizing Table Turnover with Game Changing Technology
From anniversaries, first dates, social affairs, brunches with friends to dinner with family and even business meetings, dining tables seems to invariably bring everyone together. Restaurants have used various methods for making reservations in order to capitalize on the cover count for their restaurant. A restaurant reservation online system is designed to make it easy for restaurant owners/managers to create a seating layout precise with their design and to manage table reservations as well overseeing table service during service. A reservation for all intents and purposes, is an end result of the decision process. Hence, developing and maintaining a reliable and efficient restaurant booking system is crucial for helping restaurant owners and managers keep organized, maximize table turnover, and reduce wait time for guests.
How Apps Effect Restaurant Reservations
With technology saturating the restaurant industry, developers have ignited the idea of creating a restaurant reservation app that could potentially decrease waiting times. When popular restaurants do not accept reservations, customers must arrive in person, register their name on the list, and wait for an excoriatingly long time to be seated at a table which can be frustrating for them. Some of these restaurants have gradually picked up and adapted to paging systems such as Table’s Ready and WaitAway that alert guests of an available table via text message, rendering traditional buzzers useless and obsolete. These programs allow guests to wander away from the restaurant as they wait and remain entertained by the exploring the surrounding area. They also allow restaurants to track and collect data on the number of guests they seat and wait times for specific nights.
These restaurant reservation apps create a win-win situation for owners and patrons alike. First, diners no longer have to stand by the host stand and wait indefinitely for a table. Secondly, they are proven to be more profitable for restaurant owners as they can move the front of the house more quickly and generate data to help with staffing and estimating wait times. Taking matters a step further, finding out wait times at various restaurants prior to arriving is thought to make a smoother dining experience resulting customer satisfaction. Whats the Wait?, for example, is a web application that allows users to search and enter wait times at different restaurants. Comparatively, WhyWait, a restaurant mobile app shows users wait times at restaurant before they arrive.
Beneficial Features of Online Restaurant Reservations
Allowing customers to make online arrangements present many advantages. By offering convenient 24/7 access to them, this method eliminates the need to make a phone call to the restaurant. Furthermore, this system does not require them to wait for a response from a staff member. It also allows them to read restaurant reviews, view prices and compare them to other restaurants. For the owners, online reservations reduce time devoted to accepting calls during business hours. They can confirm or reject reservations via email. It turns website visits into reservations. Lastly, it keeps all reservations in one place. You have a few options to consider when installing an online reservation program on your website. Guestful, for instance, is a reservation widget geared for WordPress sites which enables visitors to make reservations. This particular widget usually communicates to the customer via email and updates them on their status.
On the other hand, if you are looking to advertise your restaurant so that customers can easily locate your establishment’s contact information on their mobiles, adding a click-to-call feature from Google Adwords may be more helpful for you. When your ad appears on Google search , you should notice a clickable call button used to encourage calls from customers on-the-go in need to make last minute reservations. This feature is believed to be very user-friendly, easy to set up and lead to increased click through rates. Only after budgeting your spending costs and determining the importance of the issue on open tables, you can ultimately decide on the best route for your restaurant. Whether you prefer to develop apps or add your own reservation widget, incorporating a reservations system that synchronizes with your business model is essential for the success, if not, survival of your restaurant.