It is the worldwide repercussion of the novel Coronavirus crisis that sees the Food & Beverages industry suffering the most amongst other industries. As per a data report released by EAT APP, the largest restaurant reservation platform in the Middle-East, there was a sharp 60% decline in customers while Dubai itself had a 30% decline in the restaurant business leading to the restaurants’ complete shutdown amidst lockdown. However, the post lockdown phase is seeing restaurants bouncing back with new sets of offerings triggered by adopting digital technologies to their ecosystem. Let’s see how restaurant technology is helping scaling business like never before –
1. Food Delivery Aggregators
Food delivery aggregator service is the service catapulting the whole definition of technological intervention in recreating the restaurant-specific business model in the UAE. The concept of aggregators is helping business restart journey in a slow but forward-moving direction. A restaurant aggregator can be understood as an organization that gathers the details of various restaurants and gives an online service for each of them exclusively. The restaurant aggregators do online booking, online ordering, and just like TALABAT, MUNCH, a Dubai-based delivery app, ZOMATO, etc., these food delivery aggregators are helping leverage the mobile application technology enhancing restaurant business ultimately.
2. Drive-Thru Mobile Service
Social distancing, minimal social interaction are few terminologies we all can identify nowadays. How come we not opt for a touchless technology medium that is a necessity now? Although most of the F&B businesses do not support this system, they are gradually picking one as people, or customers, are preferring this mode of service in their areas. For example, McDonald’s Drive-Thru, DRIVU are few drive-thru stores based on mobile-based services. The result is QUICK and CONVENIENT meals to the customers concerned.
How it works – A drive-through restaurant or drive-thru mode of food delivery is the type of restaurant service where customers can pick-up their ordered food without stepping out of their cars! Usually, a drive-thru restaurant is a building that has a driveway wrapped around it. Customers (drivers) drive to a small window and place their orders. Then they drive to the other window on the other side of the restaurant and pick the orders.
3. Direct- Brand -Delivery-Platform
Restaurants are opting for personalized food delivery solutions or launch their food delivery customized apps. The scenario is that these restaurants are facing tough competition from the delivery aggregators who charge commissions as a part of delivery service (this is how the latter’s business model works).
So, if you are a restaurant owner, your foremost goal is to launch your own, specific food delivery application (web & mobile, both).
The CEO of GoFood, Naveed Dowlatshahi, says thus, “Imagine the pressure that restaurants face when they are offering anything up to a 50 percent discount, in addition to the 30 percent commission – what is left for the restaurant?”
A group of restaurant operators has created a home-grown-delivery-app as well as a website called GoFood. These restaurant operators are the actual owners. Now the question is, as a restaurant owner, how will you decide which solution is most suitable for your business?
4. Touchscreen POS Terminal & Contactless Payments
Restaurant POS software solutions are helping the restaurant business by creating an easy to understand, seamless, intuitive interface. Touchscreen POS terminal is proving to be simplifying the process of order-taking, managing customers as per COVID regulations (maintaining social distancing, sanitizing the area and machines on regular basis, and so on)in the UAE.
Even these POS terminals can accept credit card payments, mobile payments, via some readers directly integrating with the POS machines.
Digital Wallets, EMV, and MSR, NFC are a few terms that you can relate to while dealing with your restaurant business payment segment. Contactless payments are something that customers are welcoming for a dining experience in the current contextual scenario.
A note from the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry
According to Mohammed Bin Sulaiman, Senior Manager, Business Relations, Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry, “Smart solutions such as convenient delivery apps and contactless menus and payments are now becoming the new norm, complementing the traditional restaurant experience and creating value for industry players and customers alike. Food businesses in the UAE are now rethinking their business models, and focusing their efforts on adapting to new market conditions and innovating, as they plan for the post-COVID recovery.” (source – Entrepreneur Middle East)
Find out how our leading client from Bahrain utilized mobile application to increase its customer acquisition cost by 5 times. If you are a business owner or startup engaged into food business, do reach out and explore with us what’s possible with Digital!