Restaurant Technologies That Work
There are interesting things going on in the Restaurant World today. The years of hand-written tickets and credit card imprint kits have long since been replaced by POS systems and thermal printers, but what other tools are out there to help restaurants that weren't around five years ago? Here are four tools that we at Kitchify recommend restaurant owners take a second look at if they haven't already.
Opentable Private Dining Leads
Opentable Private Dining Leads provides a steady flow of large party groups looking for a private place to dine. If you have a private room, patio, or area of your restaurant that can or could be used for groups of 15 or more, this paid service from Opentable can prove to be very good at filling those seats. At $99/month, this service pays for itself many times over with one successful booking. With Opentable being the authority on booking restaurant reservations, diners trust the service and the restaurants that are listed on it, making it a worthwhile investment for your business.
We'll be the first to admit that we tried Facebook Advertising a few years ago and it resulted in terrible conversion rates, click through rates, and cost a fortune. Needless to say, we ditched the product. Fast forward to today and we have to hand it to Mr. Zuckerberg, Facebook Ads are the real deal now. The targeting features allow you to drill down to an extremely specific demographic depending on what you are marketing. Want to run an ad that shows up in the news feed of men and women at least 21 years of age between 2pm and 5pm that live within 10 miles of the epicenter of Downtown Denver, have above average monthly credit card expenditures, and "like" seafood boils? Yep, you can do that now, and it works.
Canva.com has to have ad design experts a little nervous. This extremely easy to use design program makes creating professional looking ads, posters, flyers, or social media updates a task that anybody can master. With the ability to upload your own images while also choosing from hundreds of Canva provided images, your own creativity is the limit to what can be designed in a very intuitive drag, drop, and click type of navigation. Canva is free unless you need to purchase premium images, and even if you need to purchase images, they are typically less than a buck.
Ok, the verdict is not in on this one yet, but it does have us excited. Gratafy allows users to "gift" individual items to friends, family, or colleagues straight to their phone via text or email. Restaurants are charged 10% of the sale and Gratafy sends "gift" revenue to the restaurant. Think buying a friend a beer at the restaurant they are at while you're stuck at work right from your phone to theirs. Or being able to send someone a bottle of champagne during their anniversary dinner without the hassle of calling the restaurant and trying to make all of the arrangements. Individual item "gifting" was a pain point in the industry that Gratafy seems to have solved. The only question is whether there will be enough adoption of the service to gain any traction. We'll let you know when we do.