Omnichannel ordering: Why you should take (back) control of your dining experience

Before we tell you more about omnichannel ordering, it’s worth noting how dining has changed. In the past, restaurants had complete control of the dining experience. They chose everything from greeters and lighting to how and when to serve each dish. Nowadays, there are third-party solutions that provide convenience in exchange for reduced control and higher costs. In other words, restaurants have less to worry about, but at a cost.

Delivery and takeout solutions and third-party apps were vital for restaurants’ survival during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. But now the tides have (once again) turned. In-person dining is back, and guests have more ways to dine than ever before. And now, restaurants have the opportunity to take back control of their dining experience with omnichannel ordering.

What is “Omnichannel Ordering”?

The term “omnichannel” is most commonly used in the fields of inventory management and retail. Nevertheless, when it comes to restaurants and foodservice, omnichannel takes on the same meaning. Simply put, “omnichannel ordering” allows customers to enjoy a consistent ordering experience (online, in-restaurant, from their mobile devices, from apps, etc.) no matter how and from where they are ordering (takeout, delivery, dine-in, etc.). Omnichannel ordering creates a seamless, customer-centric experience that does not impact the guest experience no matter where they are ordering from.

Let’s put this into a real-world example. Let’s say you own a burger spot that supports omnichannel ordering. If a customer wants to eat at your restaurant, they have many options. They could:

  1. Dine-in and access the menu, order, and pay all from their mobile device
  2. Order takeout from your app, social media, or website and pick up it themselves
  3. Order delivery your restaurant through your website/app

Each of these options is controlled exclusively by your restaurant. Also, most importantly, the quality of food, ease of ordering, and level of service are the same.

Benefits of Omnichannel Ordering

The benefits of omnichannel ordering vary from place to place. Nonetheless, here are some benefits that apply to most restaurants:

1. More satisfied customers

With omnichannel ordering, you can put your customers back at the centre of your business. How? By giving them options when it comes to where and when they want to order and eat. Ever since the pandemic, people have loved the ability to enjoy normal activities from safety of their own home. In other words, flexibility and convenience are essential. According to Restaurant Business Online, 39% of people prioritize ease of use when ordering takeout, and 50% prioritize ease of use for delivery. Overall, Food in Canada reported that 33.8% of Canadians ranked convenience as the top reason for ordering food online.

By giving customers the power to order for themselves, ordering mistakes decrease, and guests can have more time to explore menu options. All of this leads to more satisfied customers and money in your pocket.

2. New revenue streams

Without a doubt, a segment of guests love the traditional dining experience. Yet, some customers enjoy the comfort of eating at home more than eating out. In fact, PYMNTS has even found that 55% of people prefer ordering food without having to interact with a person. Even more, ordering food helps customers who may not have the time to sit down and eat, but enjoy outside food.

Reach all of your potential customers by offering them multiple ordering options to suit their needs. Omnichannel ordering opens up new revenue streams and attracts new customers. In fact, Skip the Dishes Canada found that 81% of customers ordered from a restaurant in 2020 that they’ve never been to in person. According to Restaurant Business, 60% of restaurant operators have reported that offering delivery has generated incremental sales.

3. Better control of your operations

One of the main benefits of omnichannel ordering is that it allows restaurants to take back control of the experience. By managing the ways customers get your food, you can have a better say in how everything operates. For example, by offering your own takeout and delivery service, you get to choose what branding goes on the packaging, how much to charge for delivery, how fast to deliver the food, and more. (If you want more on this topic, read Takeout and delivery: Why you should offer your own (and how).)

Customers also like when restaurants control the experience because it’s what made them successful in the first place. It increases trust and greater customer loyalty. CitrusBits reported that 51.5% of customers want their food delivered with the restaurant’s own app. Likewise, they found that 52% of diners trust a restaurant’s mobile app over a third-party delivery service, and 74% wished more restaurants would offer a delivery service of their own.

4. A seamless, consistent dining experience

Altogether, omnichannel ordering means guests get the same experience everywhere. Regardless of where the food comes from, what they order, and how they receive it, the goal is consistency. Repeat customers can enjoy your food multiple times from different channels, with a good experience every time.  Plus, since you won’t have to pay high commission fess (like with third-party apps), you can charge lower prices, offer larger portions, or both!

How to Implement Omnichannel Ordering

Omnichannel ordering can fit well with your business model. Third-party ordering apps are a pivotal part of many restaurants’ business models and with good reason. They are excellent marketing tools that help you acquire new customers, but why should you pay high customer acquisition costs more than once? With an omnichannel strategy, it’s up to you to decide how much you invest in these marketplaces.

With new revenue from increased orders and better margins, you will need to ensure that you have the resources to mange these different ordering streams, but luckily there are many tools that can help. As well, omnichannel requires investments in technology. QR or NFC beacons, social media management, and responsive websites are all good examples. What’s more, you will need ensure your customers know how to order from you, which could require the use of social media, windows displays, responsive, digital menus and more. For some tips on social media marketing for restaurants, check out 5 tips for optimizing your social media to increase online ordering.

If you’re interested in exploring omnichannel ordering for your restaurant, App8 can help. We provide everything you need to implement omnichannel in a way that brings out the best in your establishment.

App8 brings digital dining expertise to foodservice ordering

In the foodservice industry, customers demand digital payment options now more than ever before. App8 brings an expertly-crafted omnichannel approach to foodservice ordering, allowing brands to keep up with a quickly changing industry.

OTTAWA, ON — App8 is formally upgrading its service model following its emergence as a leader in the foodservice ordering space. The company, which produces a contactless dining and omnichannel ordering solution, will formally launch their new service package, called Order Anywhere, this summer. has emerged as a leader in the food service ordering space. The company, which produces a contactless dining and omnichannel ordering solution, is gaining prominence due to the accelerated adoption of contactless dining tools and increased expectations for transparency and convenience. App8’s Point-of-Sale (POS)/Integration-first approach has enabled them to integrate their seamless digital dining experience into some of North America’s largest foodservice brands.

When App8 launched in 2018, the company developed a service for restaurant guests to quickly settle their bills from their smartphones — without waiting for a paper receipt or a payment machine. For restaurants, this resulted in greater guest satisfaction during lunch and dinner rushes, more money from faster table turnover, and time saved by service staff.

In January 2020, App8 raised US$850,000 in Seed financing to expand its integrated mobile payment product across the U.S. and Canada. Following the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020, many restaurants shifted their on-premise dining to a contactless experience while greatly expanding their online and takeout presence. Being well-positioned in this space, App8 quickly aligned its product offering with the new market requirements.

“We had a deep understanding of foodservice operations and the integration capabilities that could seamlessly facilitate both on-premise and off-premise digital experiences,” says Elias Hage, CEO, and co-founder of App8. “We knew where the industry was heading, and we had the right team and product to serve the future of dining.”

Throughout the two years that followed, App8 evolved its product into a scalable, omnichannel ordering platform that could support dine-in and takeout ordering, menu management, powerful integrations, and restaurant analytics, all within one solution. This versatility enabled App8 to serve traditional foodservice establishments, such as restaurants, diners, and bars, and non-traditional dining establishments and entertainment centres, such as bowling alleys, stadiums, golf courses, and hotels.

Today, App8 is working with some of the largest national brands, representing hundreds of locations across the U.S. and Canada.

ABOUT APP8

App8 is a leading omnichannel ordering solution for foodservice brands that enables guests to view digital menus, order dine-in, pickup, or delivery, and pay for their meals, all from their own smartphones. App8 works with some of the top restaurant and entertainment brands in North America to deliver value beyond contactless transactions with guest feedback, advanced reporting, and actionable insights.

View this press release on PRWeb.com.