Self-serve kiosk

Why Your Restaurant Needs Self-Order Kiosks: A Comprehensive 2024 Guide

Diksha Adhikari
May 26, 2024
1 mins

Table of Content

Self-order kiosks are revolutionizing customer interaction with restaurants. These systems streamline orders and customize dining experiences. They are commonly found in fast food chains and casual dining spots, and they help cut down on wait times and improve restaurant efficiency.

The self-order kiosk market is expected to expand at a 7.1% CAGR from 2023 to 2030. Big restaurants, like McDonald's, are experiencing a sales surge from kiosk usage, with a notable 6.5% increase in Q2 global sales—the highest in seven years.

Moreover, younger demographics, especially Gen Z, are drawn to kiosks, with 91% stating they would visit a restaurant more if it offered kiosk services.

In this blog, we'll discuss how self-order kiosks can enhance restaurant operations in 2024. We'll focus on their benefits, setup processes, associated costs, and regulatory considerations.

Benefits of Implementing Restaurant Kiosks

Introducing self-order kiosks at your restaurant can transform your service approach. These dynamic systems bring multiple benefits that improve customer interaction and operational efficiency.

Self-serving kiosks enhance the dining experience by minimizing waiting periods and decreasing the chance of order mistakes. Here are some advantages of adopting kiosk technology in your restaurant setting:

Enhanced Customer Experience

Self-order kiosks make dining out a breeze by allowing customers to customize and control their orders. Customers can scroll through the menu, pick their favorites, and tweak their orders the way they like without feeling rushed. This setup is perfect for easing the hustle of a crowded restaurant.

Moreover, these kiosks speed up the ordering process by making it quicker and more straightforward. A study shows that 60% of diners favor using self-service kiosks because they're fast and easy to use. This ease of use boosts customer satisfaction and fosters loyalty.

Increased Ordering Efficiency

Self-service kiosks also improve ordering efficiency. They reduce wait times by allowing multiple customers to order simultaneously. This lets your team concentrate on preparing meals and delivering excellent customer service rather than taking orders. 

With automation handling the orders, your services become quicker. It facilitates faster table turnovers and increases sales. Kiosks also enhance speed and organization to create a smoother, more effective dining experience for your customers.

Accuracy and Reduced Human Error

Self-order kiosks let customers input their orders directly, enhancing order accuracy. This direct input ensures that preferences and dietary restrictions are correctly conveyed. It eliminates miscommunications common with verbal orders and reduces order mistakes. 

Upselling Opportunities 

Self-order kiosks increase sales by smartly suggesting complementary items and meal combos during ordering. These prompts encourage customers to add more to their orders, which increases their average order value. These specific suggestions can also encourage customers to try new dishes or enhance their existing selections, which in turn boosts revenue.

Labor Optimization

Self-order kiosks optimize labor by reallocating staff from order-taking to service tasks. With kiosks handling orders and payments, your employees can focus on food preparation and personalized customer service. They can attend to customer needs more promptly and ensure high-quality service. This efficient use of labor reduces wait times and boosts customer satisfaction. 

How Much Does it Cost to Implement Self-ordering Kiosks?

Investing in self-ordering kiosks requires a substantial initial outlay, typically around $950 for each unit. Additionally, there's always the possibility of technical issues or malfunctions that could interrupt service.

Before moving forward, we recommend you explore the various kiosk models and consider the elements that might affect their deployment and effectiveness:

Types of Kiosks

There are multiple types of self-ordering kiosks, each with benefits, depending on your restaurant's layout and customer flow. Choose the type that fits your space and operational needs best:

  1. Freestanding kiosks are large units typically placed in high-traffic areas. They offer substantial screen space, which makes them ideal for displaying menu items and promotions. 
  1. Countertop kiosks are smaller and can be placed on existing counters. They are perfect for restaurants with limited floor space.
  1. Wall-mounted kiosks are another space-saving option. They are attached to walls to free up counter and floor space. 

Factors to Consider

Here are some factors that influence the choice of self-ordering kiosks:

  • Size is a primary consideration; ensure the kiosk fits comfortably in your designated area without obstructing customer movement. 
  • Internet connectivity is another critical factor. Ethernet connections provide reliability and speed, essential for seamless transactions. However, wireless options offer flexibility and a cleaner setup. 
  • Opt for a kiosk compatible with various payment solutions. Your kiosks should support popular payment methods like Visa, Mastercard, Google Pay, and Apple Pay. 
  • Ensuring compatibility with your existing POS and stock systems can streamline operations and avoid unnecessary disruptions.

Vendor Selection 

A well-chosen vendor supports smooth operations, frequent updates, and robust hardware. Here are some factors to consider:

  1. Responsive Design

The design should be responsive so that the software works across multiple devices without issues. Your customers should have a seamless experience while using the kiosk.

  1. Size and Format Options

Consider the sizes and formats offered. Large free standing kiosks may suit restaurants that encourage customers to self-order, while wall-mounted or countertop options work better in space-constrained areas.

  1. Connectivity Options

Check if the vendor provides both Ethernet and wireless options. This will allow flexibility based on your premises.

  1. Durability

Durability is essential, especially in busy areas. Ask about the hardware's strength and its ability to handle constant use.

  1. Software Updates

Regular software updates are essential for maintaining kiosk functionality and security. Ask vendors how frequently they update their software and seek feedback from other businesses using their kiosks.

  1. Easy Setup

Easy setup is another critical factor. Look for vendors who minimize installation disruption and offer timely setups.

  1. System Integration

Ensure the kiosk integrates smoothly with your existing systems. This will avoid the hassle of changing POS or stock systems.

  1. Payment Options

Ensure the kiosks can handle multiple payment options according to your customer base's preferences. The ability to accept various payment methods will enhance customer convenience and satisfaction.

How to Implement Self-ordering Kiosks?

Here are the essential steps to successfully integrate self-ordering kiosks into your restaurant: 

Planning and Installation

Implementing self-ordering kiosks requires careful planning and installation. 

  • Start by assessing your restaurant's layout to determine the best kiosk locations. Ensure these spots are easily accessible and visible to customers. 
  • Next, select the kiosk type that fits your space.
  • Ensure your internet connection is strong. Opt for Ethernet for stability or wireless for convenience.
  • Coordinate with your kiosk vendor for a site survey to avoid installation disruptions. 
  • Ensure power outlets are available where kiosks will be installed. Once the kiosks arrive, follow the vendor's installation guidelines for a smooth setup.

Training Staff

Training staff is a critical investment that improves service quality and fosters a positive workplace culture. Properly trained employees perform their tasks more efficiently and contribute to a cohesive team environment.

  • Begin with a comprehensive training session that covers kiosk operations. Conduct sessions on troubleshooting common issues and assisting customers. 
  • Ensure your team comprehends the advantages of kiosks, like enhanced order accuracy and efficiency, to communicate these benefits to customers.
  • Create quick-reference guides or cheat sheets for your staff during peak times.
  • Encourage your staff to use the kiosks to gain familiarity and confidence in assisting customers effectively.

Customer Adaptation

Get customers to use self-ordering kiosks by making the transition simple. Use clear signs to show where the kiosks are. Offer discounts for orders placed through kiosks to encourage use. Have staff nearby to help customers and answer questions during the initial phase.

Provide simple, easy-to-follow instructions on the kiosks themselves. To attract customers, highlight the benefits, such as faster service and customization options.

Legal and Regulatory Requirements to Consider 

Ensuring compliance with legal and regulatory requirements protects your business from potential fines and legal issues and enhances customer trust.

Compliance with Regulations

Your kiosks must be accessible to all customers, including those with disabilities. This means arranging kiosks at suitable heights and ensuring the interface is navigable for everyone. 

Additionally, securing customer data is mandatory. To safeguard payment information, comply with the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS). Regular system audits help maintain security standards and address vulnerabilities promptly. Integrating robust encryption methods to protect data transmitted during transactions is essential.

Privacy Concerns

Implementing self-service kiosks in your restaurant involves careful consideration of privacy concerns. These kiosks collect significant data, including purchase history, personal details like names and payment information, and even location data within the store. 

Ensuring that all data collection complies with privacy laws such as the GDPR or CCPA is essential. This means providing clear notifications to users about the data being collected, how it is used, and with whom it is shared. Additionally, offering customers options to opt out of data collection is crucial. Safeguarding this data and being transparent about its use are key to maintaining trust and ensuring compliance.

Ready to Implement Self-Ordering Kiosks for Your Restaurant?

Self-service kiosks enhance your restaurant's service efficiency by streamlining the ordering process and reducing wait times. These systems empower customers to place orders conveniently, leading to faster service. By offering a modern and user-friendly ordering option, you attract tech-savvy diners and free up your staff to focus on other critical tasks, such as food preparation and customer service.

However, successful implementation requires careful planning and execution. Properly train your staff to handle the new system, assist customers as needed, and ensure compliance with the system for a hassle-free experience. 

Are you planning to integrate customizable self-service kiosks for your business? Contact OneHubPOS to explore our solutions that fit your restaurant's specific needs.

How do I figure out how much to charge for food?

Pricing is a balancing act! You need to cover your costs (including the food cost per portion) while offering a price point that feels valuable to your customers. Consider factors like competition, target audience, and the overall dining experience you create.

What tools are available for tracking food costs?

Food cost calculators are great for initial estimates, but consider restaurant management software for ongoing success. This software tracks inventory, automates cost calculations, and generates reports to identify cost-saving opportunities.

Can I use a food cost calculator for different types of cuisine?

Absolutely! Many online food cost calculators can handle various cuisines. Look for tools that consider ingredient types, portion sizes, and even regional pricing variations.

How often should I calculate food cost percentage?

Consider your food cost percentage your restaurant's financial fitness tracker. It's the total cost of recipe ingredients divided by your total menu sales. Ideally, calculate this regularly, like weekly or bi-weekly, to monitor profitability and adjust pricing or portions as needed.

What is the standard costing model?

The standard costing model is like a recipe for consistent pricing. It uses historical data and market trends to predict ingredient costs, allowing you to budget, purchase, and maintain profit margins even when prices fluctuate.

What is food cost per portion?

Food cost per portion is the actual cost of creating a single serving of a dish. It considers all ingredients, including spices, garnishes, and even waste!  This number helps you understand your profitability and set menu prices effectively.

Diksha Adhikari
Content Marketer - OneHubPOS

Diksha, a seasoned content marketer, brings hands-on experience in website management, social media marketing, and branding. Her expertise drives efffective and results-driven digital strategies.

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