Everyone and their mother has a smartphone now, and we use apps for everything. Considering these apps sit on our phones which we take everywhere with us, this is a superb marketing tool that many businesses can make use of.
Restaurants are no different – in fact, apps can be incredibly useful for both restaurant staff and diners.
Booking and reservations
Having a booking system in your app is an excellent way to fill more tables. The app will give people the ability to book a table within just a few seconds – and you won’t have to do a thing other than watch your tables fill up.
Increased customer loyalty
Firstly, having your restaurant’s app on their phone will be a frequent reminder to eat there, without them even opening it.
On top of this, you can have discounts and offers which are only available to customers who download the app, thus encouraging more people to download it.
Even better, you can use push notifications to notify app users of new deals. Customers are much more likely to redeem offers and coupons which are ready and waiting on their phone. Imagine how many people could be out and about wondering where to eat, when they realise that they can get a good deal at your restaurant – and all they need to do is get their phone out!
You could either incorporate reviews in your app, so people can leave and read reviews in the same place, or you could direct them to review sites of your choice.
You can ask them to review your restaurant on sites such as TripAdvisor and Facebook using push notifications after their visit.
Stand out from your competitors
A remarkably small number of restaurants are making use of apps. Particularly if your business is in a small town, you’ll benefit from being one of the first to have an app that will make your customers’ dining experience easier.
As far as your customers are concerned, all restaurants should have an app, but they rarely do.
Build your brand
Getting an app is an easy way to show people that you are a serious business ready to embrace the 21st century. It will also send customers the message that you are a popular and thriving restaurant that requires an app to organise the large number of customers you get through the doors each day.
Your app’s design is also an opportunity to really piece together a consistent brand image, by using enticing photos, your brand’s colours, and content with personality.
Designed for mobiles = easier to view on mobiles
It’s much easier to make your content look fantastic on mobiles on an app than it is on a website. Websites can be optimised for mobiles, but they don’t offer as much flexibility – apps are like building a whole new website just for mobiles.
This way, your food menus can be made easy to view while on the go, the most important information can be the first thing customers see when they load the app, and customers can easily get in contact with you with features such as ‘click to call’.
Ordering food is made easier
For your staff, giving customers the ability to order food on your app makes life much easier. Orders are much clearer when customers have chosen what they want on the app, rather than over the phone. Additionally, if customers choose to collect their order, as they will have ordered in advance on the app, there will be less people hanging around waiting for their orders to be ready. You could even have an alert system set up to inform them when their order is nearly ready.
It will be a much more enjoyable experience for customers too – and not just because of the reduced waiting time. The app can give them the ability to pay as they order, hassle-free. Having an interactive menu with different options is also nicer than having a static online menu or a paper version to choose from, as they can see exactly what changes they can make to the meal, and what’s included.
Social media integrations
You can encourage your customers to share their experience on social media using your app too. By setting up a timer on a push notification, you can ask them to recommend their experience online a certain amount of time after they’ve finished their meal.
You can also let them know that others can get the deals that they’ve enjoyed if they have the app too, encouraging them to tell their friends and followers to download the app too.
If you’re pretty convinced, and think it’s about time your restaurant got its own app, feel free to get in touch with us – we create bespoke, affordable apps for all industries.