Canadian Pizza Magazine

Study suggests 3 priorities for restaurants

By Canadian Pizza   

News consumer behaviour deloitte menu payment options restaurant payment

New York – A new study from Deloitte suggests highlighting your menu, allowing customers different ways to pay and making a connection with them should be top priorities for restaurants.

According to the report, entitled The restaurant of the future: Creating the next-generation customer experience, 40 per cent of frequent restaurant visitors prefer to order online, and spend 26 per cent more per online order at quick-service restaurants and 13 per cent more in casual and fast-casual eateries.

The report highlights the options that surveyed restaurant customers want most – such as online ordering, payment flexibility and customization – and how these increase dining frequency, check size, customer conversion and loyalty, Deloitte said in a news release.

“People have come to expect certain conveniences when they shop, travel and handle their finances – such as mobile access, personalization, loyalty tracking and no-touch transactions,” said Andrew Feinberg, principal at Deloitte Consulting LLP, in the release. “More and more, they want their restaurant experiences to feel the same way. The true restaurants of the future will likely be the ones that engage people in a personalized way, even as interactions become more omni-channel.”


Restaurant menu is still king
The restaurant menu is still the most important factor when choosing a restaurant for the first time. Eighty-five per cent of survey respondents said they will view the menu on the restaurant’s own website when making that decision. If a QSR location lets them use technology customers will come back six per cent more often and spend 20 per cent more each time. Also, when they order, the most important element of the menu is the ability to customize the order. 

More ways to pay
Payment flexibility – such as splitting checks – is common practice in a traditional restaurant experience, and more than half of diners surveyed expect the same payment flexibility with take-out (54 per cent) and drive-thru (53 per cent) orders. Many guests on-the-go also want the option to pay by phone: nearly half of drive-thru and take-out guests want to pay by phone, compared with 31 per cent of dine-in customers. Among those who want to pay by phone, half prefer to use the restaurant’s app.

Connections that count
While technology facilitates guest interactions, people still want to be recognized. In the survey, 70 per cent of respondents said they look for apps that deliver personalized offers and convey the sense that a restaurant “knows them.” Additionally, 84 per cent of respondents said that they will return if a restaurant responds directly to their feedback. And while many use their devices to collect and curate information on their own, 80 per cent want to hear about discounts and special deals, preferably by email.

“Restaurants should recognize the distinct preferences that align with each customer touch point and its purpose, from research to ordering to payment and feedback,” Feinberg said. In some instances, the individual prefers to take the initiative; in others, the brand has to push a message out. The mix tends to work better together, as part of a plan that integrates virtual and physical restaurant spaces, rather than focusing on a single channel or one-off tactic.”

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