The digital menu is a more modern development that we can increasingly observe due to hygiene measures. Whether interactive order terminals, self-order kiosks, or digital or mobile tablets: the variety of options for displaying menus on digital media is almost endless. The trend indicates a shift from classic ordering at the table with printed menus to digital media. Discover seven advantages of equipping your restaurant with digital menus in our blog:
Adaptation To New Consumer Behavior
Even if the traditional paper menu does not disappear shortly, consumers increasingly want to order digitally and contactless. A survey by the booking website OpenTable found that strict hygiene measures are essential when choosing a place to eat for more than two-thirds of the customers surveyed (72%).
Another survey conducted by Lightspeed found that 6% of Swiss believe that ordering via a digital menu or app is essential in the new post-Covid era. However, disinfecting printed, laminated menus after each guest is time-consuming and can lead to forgetting. In addition to reducing the risk of infection, the digital menu has the advantage that it helps to save resources in the long term and can also be more cost-effective: you keep the costs of printing and laminating paper with every change or creation!
Increasingly Important Flexibility
Another unique feature of the digital menu is its modularity. This enables flexible adjustment at any time. Did you forget to add a dish or drink to your menu? Are there delivery problems, or is a vital ingredient no longer available so that individual words cannot be offered? With a digital menu, you can adjust your menu at any time without having to reprint your menu.
In addition, you don’t have to disappoint your guests by explaining that the dish or drink they want is no longer available on the menu. With a digital menu, you can overcome the technical limitations of paper format and change the menu regularly depending on the season, your customers’ preferences, or advertising campaigns. With a POS system like Lightspeed Restaurant, restaurateurs can easily create and edit their menus on the go. It only takes a few minutes to add, delete or edit dishes. All menu changes can be managed remotely.
Faster Service With More Dedicated Service Staff
Of course, catering establishments of all kinds try to keep the waiting times of their guests short. In the course of this, a digital menu appears as an ideal tool to improve the speed of the service. Using these, the serving staff avoids running back and forth to hand out printed menus. On the other hand, the card does not have to be disinfected after each table change. This saves time that can be invested in other tasks with higher added value for your staff and guests! Training, preparing for the next shift, or providing a more personal service to the guest are just a few tasks your service staff can focus on.
Your servers also have more time to advise your guests on the choice of food or the combination of food and wine. This shows the attention that will please your customers and usually pays off in higher sales. Integrating your digital menu into your POS system automatically sends the orders to the kitchen. This avoids the risk of input errors and running back and forth between the kitchen and the hall. Your customers no longer have to wait for their turn to place an order. The order is placed with just a few clicks from the terminal, tablet, or phone where your customers view the menu. A time saver for your staff and your guests!
Prevention Of Staff Shortages
Are you understaffed at peak times? Taking orders via a digital menu is one way to meet this challenge and reduce your labor costs. Letting your guests order via the digital menu may reduce the use of servers and allow them to take their time with the order: a win-win strategy!
A Detailed And Personalized Menu
Whether at a self-order kiosk or via an online ordering tool, the display of your digital menu is not limited in size or a specific format. So, with the help of a detailed menu, you can enrich the menu with the following information:
- product origin
- Certifications (e.g., organic, vegan, halal, etc.)
- nutritional information
- preparation time
Collect information about your guests’ preferences as part of a customer loyalty program. Then offer a returning guest to log in with their profile. This allows you to personalize your guest relationships by highlighting past orders and, thus, guest preferences. Alternatively, discounts on their favorite dishes can also be offered. A digital menu allows you to increase your average order value via upselling and cross-selling based on artificial intelligence. Highlight the best-selling food or drink combinations.
Display popular extras or side dishes with every dish or drink ordered. You can also offer a volume discount such as “buy two dishes, get the third free,” etc. And finally, you can adapt the language of your menu to the language of your guests: is your restaurant located in a tourist hotspot and regularly attracts guests? Their digital menu allows these diners to switch from one language to another with one click. You also save yourself the trouble of printing out physical menus in several languages.
Accurate Real-Time Data On The Sales Figures Of Your Dishes
A digital menu allows you to automatically track the most popular dishes by day, week, and month. So you know precisely when these dishes were sold the most. With such data, you can better predict future demand and ensure your food and beverage offerings never run out. This not only helps you order just the right thing but also the correct quantity. This reduces food waste and the cost of purchasing ingredients.
A Higher Turnover
As mentioned, a digital menu can speed up your service. Faster service means orders are taken faster. The average time spent at the table decreases, and the table is turned over more quickly. This, in turn, means more coverage and higher income. Another advantage is the higher average order value. Our data has shown that Lightspeed customers in Australia who order via QR technology or a digital menu spend, on average, 25% more than customers who order via traditional table service.