Why Use an Online Ordering System for your Restaurant?

Ian Said at Hostex 2020

In March 2020 I was fortunate to attend Hostex and to launch our new product KOUNTER. Aimed at anyone looking to improve their stock taking, particularly bars and restaurants that count so many different items, but that is not the subject of this writing.

I often wonder what the reception would have been had I been invited to speak at one of the forums. Imagine I had stood up and announced that the single biggest disruption the industry could ever imagine was just a few short weeks away.

Imagine I had stood up in front of a group of industry professionals and announced that restaurants would simply not be allowed to sell food for months, and then when they were finally allowed to, it would be by delivery or collection only?

I would have been laughed off the stage.

Here we are, almost one year later, and the industry is reeling. Many restaurants that stood for years may not re-open and those that have, have had to re-adjust their trading model considerably.

One thing is certain… food delivery and online ordering is here to stay!

There are a multitude of different platforms to choose from in South Africa. This blog is not to assist you in choosing which one is best for you, but to help you navigate the pros and cons of online delivery and to ensure it works best for you and your customers.

Related: Preparing your Restaurant for Opening after Lockdown

Why use an Online Ordering system for your restaurant?

  • Stay connected to your clients – during this difficult time with so much going on around us, so much news clogging the airwaves and so much on your customer’s minds, it is important to stay connected and remind them that you are still here now and will be when things settle down again.
  • Lead the pack – stand out as an innovator, as a company that understands the needs of their clients. When your client base is struggling to come to you… go to them! Put yourself and your business in their line of site and in their minds
  • Transition into the new technology – either that or be left behind! With the leading delivery services already way ahead of the pack, it is time to play catch up, with or without them.
  • Expand your customer base – an opportunity exists for you to talk to and connect with a large section of the market that you may previously have been ignoring. Be it gender based, age based or demographic based a number of restaurants become “comfortable” with their client base and seldom venture outside of this. Now is the time to expand that. You are going to need it.

How to choose an Online Ordering system?

  • Put your customers first – what works for them? What are they expecting and how can you make it as painless and seamless for them as possible? What technologies are they using? What platforms are they accessing? Do some research and find the most effective way to speak and communicate with your target market
  • What works for your restaurant – what can you afford? How technologically advanced are your staff, your business, even your customers? Which platform will work best for you?
  • Are there multiple channels you can use – explore, examine, ask questions. Do some research among your peers and your customers to see what is working and what is not. Don’t restrict yourself to one platform if you can help it. Explore third party delivery services, your own drivers, customers collecting. Look into Whatsapp, systems like www.myownorder.co.za and the third party options too.
  • Point of Sale Integration – the most effective system will be the one that has the least touch points, the one that allows the system to communicate as seamlessly as possible with your Point Of Sale and Stock Control system.

We, at Ideal Software, appreciate this! We have developed a number of solutions to ensure that our clients can take orders, execute them and ensure payment as easily as possible.

The video below gives a demo on our fully integrated Online Ordering system, now available with Ideal Point of Sale

If we can assist you in anyway to make this transition easier, please do not hesitate to contact us and we will gladly run through your needs and expectations with you.

Watch the video below on our fully integrated Online Ordering system, now available with Ideal Point of Sale

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