According to brand design consultancy Harrison and research company CGA, UK sports arenas and stadiums are falling short of customer expectations, failing to keep up with changing consumer habits and lagging behind the rest of the out-of-home food and drink market. The study revealed that more than half of consumers rate food and drink at sports stadiums as “ok”, “poor” or “awful”.
According to the study, “of the 12.1 million British adults who visited a major sports arena in the past 12 months, the report found more than two-thirds (70%) are male and almost 60% are white-collar workers. Their average monthly eating and drinking outspend is £113.48 – 27% more than the national average – and half of them (51%) drink out weekly, compared with a third (33%) of the wider adult population.
More than half (54%) consider themselves to be foodies, against a national average of 49%, and almost three-quarters (71%) take a keen interest in food and drink. More than two-thirds (68%) of stadium consumers proactively try to lead a healthy lifestyle, while 69% attempt to live in an environmentally friendly way. Despite having more disposable income, more than two-fifths (42%) of consumers cited expensive food and drink as their biggest frustration when visiting stadiums, with 38% citing lengthy queues.”
In the press release, Karl Chessell, business unit director for food and retail at CGA, said: “The data shows consumers have money in their pockets to spend on snacks, meals and drinks as part of their day or evening out but it’s all too often a time-consuming, expensive and poor-quality experience. With more than two-thirds of stadia-goers considering themselves knowledgeable about food and drink, it’s clear menus, service and value in many venues simply aren’t good enough. However, the research shows things are changing. Forward-thinking stadia in the UK and US, as well as dynamic casual dining and bar brands, show it’s possible to make eating and drinking out compelling and memorable, and technology is adding exciting new ways to improve engagement and efficiency even further.”
We have been reading this story with particular interest, given our own work with stadiums and events venues. We’re pleased to say that our clients are just the kind of “forward thinking stadia” that are taking the opportunity to enhance their food and drink offering by using the latest technology.
At Aviva Stadium in Dublin, each season the stadium has seen order numbers, and order values through its Preoday-powered RapidQ app steadily increase and in 2018 the use of the app saw particularly strong growth, increasing revenue by 62.5% and orders by 64.8% from 2017. In February 2018 Aviva turned half of two of its Public Level Bars into a Rapid Q collection point. This has not hindered cash takings at these bars at all and revenue taken through Rapid Q is now a bonus; sales at these combined bars are showing a 125% increase in sales compared to when they were just cash bars.
At our client Bath Rugby’s stadium, it has been a similar story. Following the introduction of preordering before matches and at halftime, Bath Rugby has seen up to an 80% increase in the bar’s transaction values, compared to non-app sales. Moreover, customer use of the app has increased year on year leading to a doubling of revenue and order numbers through the app between 2017 and 2018.
It just goes to show, technology is indeed adding exciting new ways to improve engagement and efficiency even further.
If you would like to talk about how your stadium or sports arena could benefit from pre-ordering technology, get in touch.
It’s not as catchy as: ‘When is a door not a door?’ (answer, when it’s a jar) but it speaks to the idea that in-car collection, and the technologies that support it, are flexible enough to bend to the needs of a business and its guests.
Delivery can be daunting to the uninitiated, and it might be tempting to sign up with a third-party ordering aggregator that offers the service, such as UberEats, but other options could suit your business and brand better. Here we present three different ‘levels’ of delivery, starting with the most basic – and cheapest method: doing it yourself.