With advancements in recent technology, restaurants have been evolving in the ways they operate their business. One current service enhancement includes the improvement of changing point of sales systems to integrate mobile POS systems (mPOS). In fact, a recent study conducted by industry magazine Hospitality Technology found 47 percent of respondents said adding mobile POS systems was a primary business driver in influencing restaurant point-of-sale upgrades. There are several positive benefits of utilizing mobile POS in the restaurant industry:
mPOS is a Cheaper Option
In the past, traditional POS systems were very expensive for merchants to purchase and maintain on top of being bulky in size. Mobile POS systems are transforming the way payments are processed and are a significantly cheaper and more accessible option for merchants to use. Dave Kaminsky, an analyst from Mercator Advisory Group, predicts that within the next three to five years, most of the larger and pricier point-of-sale systems will be replaced with iPads. Using iPads and mobile POS systems will save merchants thousands of dollars up front for the initial cost, therefore benefiting the merchant financially.
mPOS Enhances Customer Service
One particular restaurant that has implemented a mobile POS system and has seen a positive growth is Chili’s. In 2014, Chili’s installed over 45,000 tablets at over 800 locations throughout the U.S. These mobile tablets allow consumers to be in charge of various services right at their table during their dining experience – from ordering food and beverages, playing games, paying for their meal, and even printing or receiving their receipt via e-mail. Although customers still receive service from a waiter, the mobile tablet helps alleviate and expedite the dining process much faster. Moreover, customers will now no longer have to wait to pay and are able to control the wait time to pay for their bill.
mPOS Allows Collection of Data
Having a mobile POS device also allows restaurants to track and analyze customer data. Instead of paper surveys being handed out to customers to ask them about their dining experience, mobile POS systems can now record and track this information quickly and accurately. Chili’s has taken advantage of this system by including a brief customer satisfaction survey on their mobile tablet device during check out. This can be beneficial to the restaurant as the data collected from the surveys can be transpired digitally into spreadsheets for monthly reports.
Another restaurant that has taken advantage of using a mobile POS system is Chuck’s Wagon, a local restaurant located in Bowie, Maryland. “The mobile POS allows us to capture valuable data that gives us a better idea of our customers’ spending and buying habits,” spoke Charles Smith, owner of Chuck’s Wagon BBQ. “For example, we know that if offered the opportunity to use a card versus cash, the card user is likely to spend more.”
mPOS Creates a Digital Interaction
Smartphones are also beginning to implement opportunities for consumer-to restaurant interactions. Nearly 134 million Americans owned a smartphone in 2013, according to a comScore report. With mobile POS technology advancing and so many consumers now using their smartphones for every day use, restaurants will have the option to send consumers coupons with an “opt-in” option via text or e-mail. They will also be able to leverage mobile-based loyalty programs via social media platforms, creating a digital interaction between the restaurant and the consumer.
Restaurants can clearly directly benefit from using mobile POS systems. Between being a cheaper option, enhancing customer service, allowing restaurants to collect data, and creating a digital interaction with consumers, mobile POS devices offer a win-win situation for all. Consult with a mobile POS expert today to get started on utilizing these services for your business.