When a company first looks at adding mobile or online ordering to its customer service offering, it’s often because it wants to reduce queues, streamline orders, or find a more cost-effective way of presenting a mobile offering than Just Eat, Deliveroo or other providers allow.
However, the benefits that a mobile or online ordering service bring go beyond operational. Pre-ordering can make a deeper impact on your business.
Supporting customer acquisition
As well as being well received by an existing and loyal customer base, mobile ordering opens businesses up to new streams of customers and therefore, revenue potential. McDonald’s recently launched mobile ordering in the USA with the hope that it can gain new customers and increase growth.
It’s generally assumed that it is the millennial and younger generations which will sample and stay with a brand if it offers a mobile ordering service. They are internet and mobile-savvy, yet often pushed for time, so will look around for new opportunities to order great food, fast. However, as the gap in smartphone penetration and app usage between younger and older generations is closing you might be surprised about the demographic of new customers attracted.
One company we spoke to has a small chain of restaurants and has been offering mobile ordering for a year. It commented that it had been surprised by how many new business cards it was sending out each week (a card with a discount offer is sent out to each first-time customer upon their first mobile order). It also confirmed that it was gaining much of its new business from the older generations.
Help you grow your business strategically
Through the data pre-ordering provides, you have the opportunity to learn more about both your business and customer base, and the impact that the technology is having upon it. It’s very easy to review the data your platform gathers, for example, what is the customer’s average basket size and how does this compare to the average in-store order? Is there an upward trend in spend?
While data like this is great, it’s just the beginning. Why not go further and take a look at in-store service speeds; are they improving now staff aren’t held up taking telephone orders? What about stock levels? With the ability to spot ordering trends through the platform, can you reduce waste and therefore improve profit? If one area of the menu is proving particularly popular, might there be an opportunity to expand it? These in-store metrics show how mobile ordering is impacting your customers’ experience as well as demonstrating further avenues for business growth.
Support industry objectives
Within most hospitality industries there are government and association-set objectives that businesses are under pressure to support. The coffee/drinks market is a relevant case in point.
Recent studies have caught the attention of the media which has reported coffee lovers in the UK are getting through 2.5 billion disposable cups every twelve months, yet only 1 in 400 is recycled. Stores are being encouraged to push reusable cups at customers yet uptake has been slow. But what if you could use you mobile ordering platform to provide an incentive to customers?
Consider this: what if the customer could pre-order their drink, walk in and collect it in a reusable cup? Then, next time, all they need do is swap their used cup for a fresh drink, in a fresh cup. The store would take the dirty cup back, clean it, and hand it out with the next pre-order that comes in. It would save the customer time and money (if they received a small discount for using the service) and it would dramatically reduce the need for paper cups.
We have developed a white paper on this subject, so if you’re interested in this idea, download it, we’d love to know what you think.
Mobile ordering opens up a world of possibilities for hospitality businesses, and they are not limited to those mentioned here. If you’re curious about how mobile ordering can benefit your business, get in touch on Georgina.Miller@preoday.com, we like to chat.