This weekend I finally experienced the ‘normal’ way of ordering a drink and I must say it has put me off going back to a business I used to visit on a regular basis.
Prior to July 19th they used a QR code ordering system that allowed me to pick my drinks, snacks, food, choose my table and pay. I could remain seated and after 10-15 mins, depending on how busy they were, drinks would arrive and if food was ordered that usually came a little while later.
I visited the Sunday just gone, to find they have ditched the table ordering and gone back to what feels like the 1980’s. Rather than me take a seat at the outside seating, I am now required to walk 300 yards to the main building, where you must queue through the very small and tight bar area. I then pay and stand and wait in another queue to get my drinks.
Queuing aside, rather than being able to sit down and relax, the first 20 minutes of my visit were spent mixing with people I don’t know, this doesn’t set you up for a great time.
From my point of view the whole experience was time wasting, uncomfortable and unnecessary and I wondered why the owners had decided to get rid of a system, that whilst wasn’t perfect, it worked and did so a lot better than what they had reverted too.
When I asked a member of staff why they had got rid of the table ordering they said, ‘the owners weren’t too keen on it, and they had issues with food ordering’.
This to me says they felt they were forced in to doing it by covid, had issues because they probably chose the cheapest option and never really investigated what the benefits should be. I had experienced an issue when they ran out of food previously, but this was a process and functionality issue, with their chosen provider, and could so easily be solved.
At App4 we know from our existing customer feedback and data that table ordering has some huge benefits to the end user and the business.
For the end user, it saves them on average 15-20 minutes in ordering time, it allows them to be uninterrupted by people having to get up and order and they are 50% more likely to place a second order.
For the business it improves staff efficiency by as much as 20%, it increases the average consumer spend by 20-25% and turns tables 15-20% faster.
Table ordering done right offers some massive benfits to hospitality businesses and it is something customers want to use, and just like delivery services, customers will even pay extra to use it!
My advice is not to ‘chuck the baby out with the bath water’ and actually find a serivce provider that can work with you, to supply a solution that works for you and your customers, just like App4 do!