, Australia

Digital transformation for your QSR business

By Mia Sisko

When the Covid-19 pandemic hit, it massively impacted thousands of restaurants in the world as well as the whole foodservice industry. The impact has resulted in falling sales, bankruptcy, and job losses for employees. Many restaurants were forced to close down as they faced rapid changes in the foodservice industry. 

As people choose to avoid in-house dining due to Covid protocols, restaurants and fast-food chains are struggling to survive. Even with reducing employees and staff, food business owners are still not able to cover rent and operating expenses. This has brought to light the need for a  change in the business model for QSR businesses in order to survive and maintain business growth. 

However, with the help of digital transformation, restaurants can stay relevant and thrive. Tapping into the power of online solutions, QSRs can improve operational processes, customer reach, and food orders. 

Here are the benefits of digital transformation in the food and hospitality industry.

1. Contactless Ordering
Even post-pandemic, you cannot change people's views on hygiene and food safety. They are becoming more aware of food establishments and contact with other people. With digital transformation, consumers prefer making orders online through a website app or social media. 

This change allows QSRs to enhance the restaurant's cleanliness and sanitation. Dine-in services are limited to a few people, while the majority can pick up their orders or get them delivered to their homes. Many restaurants are now also starting to use QR Code ordering systems. There are QR codes on the table that people can easily scan and make an order. Other foodservice businesses are implementing robots that serve as waiters and deliver the food.

With minimised interaction with other people and contactless payment, consumers find that it is easier and more convenient to use digital transactions instead of waiting in a long queue. 

2. Connect with Customers Better
Though physical interactions have been minimised since the pandemic started, there are still ways for QSRs to reach their customers better. In fact, by shifting online, restaurants are now having a better understanding of what their customers like and want. 

Foodservice businesses now have apps where customers can easily scan the menu and place their orders. This data enables QSRs to determine what meals are most appealing to customers and what factors attract customers to buy. Collecting customer data helps business operations improve by adjusting the menu and keeping costs under control. 

3. Increase Efficiency
Digital transformation enhances the operational management of the food industry. Instead of handing out the menus to the customers and answering their questions, people can now browse the website's online ordering page. Common questions can be quickly answered by FAQ pages. 

The staff work such as cleaning the tables and chairs and washing the dishes are lessened. With digitalisation, the restaurant business can focus more on preparing the food and marketing them online. It increases efficiency and productivity by bringing down manual processes and automating repetitive tasks.

Another improvement QSR businesses can adopt is the use of smart cooking equipment. By modernising your commercial kitchen, you can reduce monthly power and energy bills. Although new kitchen equipment comes at a cost, they are more efficient and energy-saving than the traditional and old equipment. You don’t have to deal with frequent repair costs and equipment breaking down during operation. This makes upgrading to a modern kitchen a great investment. 

4. Futuristic
The future is online. As technology and communication continue to improve, more work and transactions will be digitalised. We now have Shopify, Amazon, and e-commerce stores for online shopping. We have PayPal, Amazon Pay, Apple Pay, and other digital payment options for online transactions. We also don't have to commute to find the best hotel - we just browse TripAdvisor and Airbnb to look for them.

Even without the pandemic, the food and hospitality industry will embrace digitalisation. It provides convenience both to the business owners and consumers. Customers can make orders wherever they are with just a few clicks on their smartphones. On the QSRs owners' side, they can track day-to-day operating costs, sales, and marketing performance more efficiently. Implementing a digital system in the food business is a surefire way to boost revenue and growth.

5. Asset Management Software
Managing a restaurant involves handling your QSR assets. Doing this manually can be time-consuming and confusing. By implementing asset management software, you can take complete control over your assets in real-time. It allows you to monitor your equipment, vehicles, inventory, and day-to-day operations.

A centralised software solution such as menrdhub provides detailed asset data to monitor any equipment repair work, costs and maintenance, and asset utilisation. This gives restaurants more profitability and keeps the business running smoothly with minimal operational downtime. With kitchen, inventory, accounting, and table management solutions in one software package, the operational process becomes more streamlined, benefiting both the restaurant business and the customers.

Conclusion
In today's digitally-driven world, it is crucial for QSRs to have an online presence. Not just to cope with the pandemic but to widen its customer base and strengthen customer service. Digital transformation is a cost-effective and profitable solution for the long-term survival and continued growth of businesses in the food industry's competitive landscape.

Clover Marketing helps QSR businesses embrace digital transformation by implementing the best online marketing practices. This involves gathering data on your business industry and target market and developing strategies that will help your business thrive online. We design specific campaigns aligned to your business needs and revenue goals. Partner with us and achieve the optimum results and potential that your business deserves.

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