24 Oct 2019 | Blog
Instant gratification is an attitude that we, as a society, have gotten used to. With technology giving us the option to get things done in half the time, we crave for more of that convenience in almost all aspects of our daily life. And that includes banking, shopping, booking reservations, communicating, and dining. In Australia alone, tolerance for waiting is on the decline due to its growing “need it now” economy, especially in the foodservice industry. But amazingly, it is one area of our economy that has been slower to adopt innovative technology. This could be put down to the unsustainable options on offer that businesses simply can’t afford to get on board the digital train. However, what restaurants can’t ignore, is that the demand for convenience in ordering food continues to grow. The good news is, there are options starting to emerge which take into account what the restaurant can afford to offer. For instance, an aggregated digital marketplace is one option that easily connects buyers and sellers to meet on one platform to exchange in goods and services. This concept is no different for food… we have seen it already through the delivery platforms, but if you are looking for something that suits the foodservice industry more broadly than just delivery, there is a food digital marketplace called TableTime that is designed to improve dining experiences by offering a convenient ordering and payment solution that doesn’t cost the restaurant. So how does it help reduce wait times for customers?
Tabletime allows customers to order ahead
As they walk through the doors of the restaurant, customers have the option to have already ordered and paid before even arriving. They simply have to open the app on their mobile device, choose where they wish to dine, select their order from the menu, and pay for it. Once the transaction has been processed, they can get on with other things while their food is being prepared. Of course, there is still a wait for food but the ability to pre-order means customers can occupy their wait time doing other important things. Gone are the days of lining up to order and pay, then sitting around twiddling your thumbs waiting for it to be prepared. Even those times when people have chosen to dine out with friends and aren’t in any rush, the ability to order from a mobile device means more time is spent catching up with friends at the table rather than lining up to order and pay.
TableTime allows the vendor to manage time expectancy
As the orders come in, vendors can input the time the customer can expect to receive their meal based on how busy the kitchen is at the given time. When customers are unsure about the wait time, they can often be disappointed if the wait is longer than they had expected. This can have a very negative impact on customer service and it may turn the customer off coming in again. In many cases now if a customer sees a long queue, they will decide not to wait and instead, simply make for the door. With TableTime, customers are given the certainty of the wait time before they place an order, plus confirmation after their order is placed. Vendors, at the same time, get to sort customer orders for a smoother and more systematic operational process.
TableTime removes customers from the queue at your counter
We’ve all experienced it, I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, when customers see a long line, they will often just turn away and head to another venue instead. As this happens, vendors lose potential patrons, which could have resulted in sales if they had only solved the queueing problem. TableTime addresses this problem by transforming the physical queue into a digital one through the digital marketplace. The menu is already loaded to the app so in a few quick taps, the customer will have placed their order and paid for it. By removing the manual labour from the staff, they can be freed up to assist in processing the orders efficiently through the kitchen.
True enough, companies switching to digital tech is a sign of the times—we are now living in a world that wants to get everything fast. When used correctly, it can transform customer experiences into something much more satisfying, at the same time, if the right platform is used, it benefits the vendors’ business as well.