These days, the landscape of the restaurant industry seems like it’s constantly in flux. Whether it’s the changing reality of how we serve our guests or the evolving way technology interacts with food service, there are a lot of innovations your team should be keeping up with.
One of the most impactful advances in restaurant technology in the past few years can be seen in mobile payment solutions. Mobile point of sale (mPOS) systems are among the most dynamic tech tools on the market, and it’s time your restaurant understood their potential.
Mobile point of sale platforms give your staff total freedom in where they conduct transactions, transcribe orders, and monitor tickets. If your restaurant is serious about investing in smart food service tech, you should brush up on the many ways mPOS systems can streamline operations at your restaurant.
In this post, we’ll review the top ways adopting a mobile payment solution can elevate your restaurant by:
- Making transactions more convenient for your business (and customers).
- Streamlining front-of-house features to boost restaurant efficiency.
- Offering you essential back-of-house management tools.
- Strengthening your restaurant’s data strategy behind-the-scenes.
- Giving your restaurant a truly customized payment solution.
Think your restaurant is ready to take your operations to the next level? Then let’s dive into these awesome ways mobile payment solutions can bring businesses like yours into the 21st century.
Making transactions more convenient for your business (and customers).
Above all, mobile payment systems make conducting transactions more convenient for your restaurant as well as its guests.
Since restaurant mPOS systems are mobile, your staff are no longer limited by bulky, fixed POS terminals. Transactions can be conducted anywhere, from the table to the food truck.
Excited to learn more about the potential of mPOS tech? Let’s take a second to review some top questions about mobile payment solutions:
- What is a mPOS system? A mobile point of sale system allows your servers to place orders, process tickets, and conduct transactions all using the same portable system. Typically, a mPOS system is comprised of a touchscreen tablet device with a card swiper.
- What kind of transactions can be conducted? Mobile payment systems can conduct all sorts of transactions. Servers can securely swipe patrons’ cards, dip EMV chips, or even process payments using contactless payment methods.
- What hardware do I need for an mPOS? One great feature of mPOS technology is that it simply requires a tablet to function. Whether you’re an Apple or Android fan, you’ll be able to make the most of your preferred mPOS system.
Since mPOS technology runs on familiar interfaces, your staff will have no problem hitting the ground running with these dynamic devices. Mobile payment tools are simple to master, and your customers will appreciate the fact that your servers have the tools they need to seamlessly record orders and close out checks.
Streamlining front-of-house features to boost restaurant efficiency.
In this past section, we touched on some of the ways that mobile payment tools like mPOS technology streamline restaurant operations from top to bottom.
However, let’s dive a little deeper and focus on the ways mPOS tools can be leveraged to make your front-of-house operations really shine for customers.
Not only do mPOS solutions empower your team to conduct transactions wherever your customers are, but they also offer many additional features to optimize the restaurant experience for your clientele.
Consider some of these useful mPOS features that boost front-of-house operations:
- Customized menus. With a customized menu display in your mPOS system, your team can more easily take orders. By simply clicking a preset button, there’s no confusion as to what menu item a customer has ordered. The easier it is to take orders, the harder it is to make a mistake!
- Order statuses. Instead of simply telling guests that their orders will be ready “as soon as possible,” they can get a real-time readout of the time remaining on their order with order status updates. These track orders from the moment they’re placed in the system throughout the food prep process.
- Bar tab authorization. Perhaps your restaurant offers a happy hour promotion, or a great deal of your business is generated by bar patrons. You can maximize the front-of-house impact of your mPOS by leveraging bar tab authorization features in order to quickly record a patron’s payment method and start tallying drink orders.
The bottom line? Mobile payment solutions like mPOS technology can offer a whole host of features that make customer interactions easier than ever. When your staff are better equipped to serve your clientele, you’re guaranteed to see happier customers.
Offering you essential back-of-house management tools.
Now, mobile point of sale systems don’t simply increase efficiency in terms of face-to-face customer interactions. In fact, these useful tools have a lot to offer behind-the-scenes.
Did you know that mobile payment tools also offer unique back-of-house management tools that streamline everything from staff allocation to inventory management?
When things are running smoothly behind the curtains, you can trust that your customers will be well taken care of by your front-of-house staff.
Take a look at these essential back-of-house management features your mobile payment system should offer:
- Shift scheduling. Instead of needing to invest in additional employee management technology, choose an mPOS platform that has shift-scheduling built in. Know exactly where your staff are allocated at all times using this useful tool.
- Inventory tracker. Similarly, it makes sense to have your inventory numbers automatically update when customers order different items, especially if you have multiple locations (a traditional restaurant venue, a food truck, etc.). Choose an mPOS with inventory tracking tools over one that requires an additional software purchase.
- Order ticketing. Once servers process orders, tickets should seamlessly flow to your back-of-house kitchen staff. They can immediately get started on fulfilling a time-tracked ticket instead of waiting for servers to manually report their newest order.
Your back-of-house staff play such a crucial role in the operations of your restaurant, so why would you want to piece together a patchwork management system of tools? Pick a mPOS that offers all of these unique features to ensure your restaurant has all the management tools it needs.
Strengthening your restaurant’s data strategy behind-the-scenes.
Adopting dynamic tools like a fully-equipped restaurant mPOS system is a smart decision because it makes operating your restaurant easier.
It also helps boost your restaurant’s data strategy by empowering your team to capture the data you need to make informed decisions about how you operate.
Mobile payment systems can help your restaurant’s staff learn more about your customers’ habits and how efficiently your team is operating.
Look out for a robust mobile payment system that offers features like:
- Menu item tracking. Learn what menu items are popular, when, and with which customers. Similarly, you can monitor which items are underperforming to determine when your menu needs to be switched up.
- Monitor the cost of labor. To help lower menu prices, track the cost of labor per employee per shift. You might find that you’re overpaying employees for what revenue you’re bringing in, or you could discover certain team members deserve a raise.
- Manage customer database. As your customers interact with your restaurant, track interactions by recording them in a customer database. Keep tabs on returning patrons and learn more about newcomers by reviewing their data.
The more your restaurant’s staff understands about its operations, the more empowered you’ll be to set a strategy that’s built for success. Invest in a mobile payment system that offers all of these smart data features (and more) to help boost your operations.
Giving your restaurant a truly customized payment solution.
What sets mobile payment solutions apart from traditional payment terminals is the scope of their customizability.
In the past, restaurants often found themselves changing their operations to fit the interface of their payment terminal.
However, what’s special about mobile payment technology is that these tools can be completely customized to serve your business well, instead of requiring your team to build your strategy backwards.
Choose a mobile payment solution that’s:
- Customized to your industry. Not all mobile payment platforms work for all restaurants. Pick a mPOS solution that’s designed for your specific industry, whether you’re an ice cream shop, a bar, or a pizza parlor.
- Integrated with your favorite software. While your mobile payment system offers a host of useful software features, you still want to be able to rely on your favorite tools, including accounting software like QuickBooks.
- Designed for your unique restaurant. Your mobile payment platform shouldn’t simply be a good fit for your business: it should be completely unique to your restaurant. Partner with a mPOS provider who can completely customize9 its software to your business during implementation.
Your business has unique needs, so don’t choose a one-size-fits all mobile payment solution. As you determine which mobile payment platform is right for your restaurant, keep in mind the fact that it should be a perfect match for your business.
About the Author
Lavu is a full-featured point of sale and business management system that improves workflow, communication, and organization. Lavu’s innovative iPad POS system was created to simplify owning and operating a food and beverage establishment.