Data and AI enabled the digitization of advertising a decade ago. Now, those same forces that drove innovation and transformation in advertising are changing the dynamics between restaurants and delivery service partners. DSPs are becoming more than a lifeline. They’re helping fundamentally change how restaurants and the industry operate while also helping to create the omnichannel restaurant business of the future.
New data from the customer relationship management platform Mobivity shows that text message marketing subscribers visit businesses 44% more frequently than non-subscribers, and once a consumer joins a restaurant’s text messaging program, the guest’s spend increases by 23%. Measured over six months, a single text subscriber can be valued at $12.15 on average in incremental revenue.
Yelp today introduced a new, comprehensive solution for restaurants to manage their front-of-house operations. With online searches for takeout remaining above pre-pandemic levels, the new Yelp Guest Manager is being billed as a comprehensive solution that brings together many of the digital tools restaurants have been using to manage digital ordering, reservations, takeout, guest loyalty, and table management.
Yelp announced that it would be evolving its Waitlist system and introducing new features designed to streamline restaurants’ front-of-house operations.
Businesses can’t ignore that more and more of their success is linked to apps and services they don’t own. They need to get a view of customer touchpoints.
Restaurants, retailers, and other local businesses looking to engage customers in a socially-distant way are giving AR-enabled interactive experiences a try.
Google continues to double down on visual search and navigation. Its latest move came last week with updates to its Live View visual navigation to help users identify and qualify local businesses. This follows soon after its Earth Cloud Anchors that will let users create digital content on physical places.
Both developments tell us something about what may well be the future of local search: augmented reality-enhanced visuals.
We expect to see a continued rise in touchless retail shopping and contactless transactions à la Amazon Go Stores.
But one of the less-discussed technologies in the Covid-advantaged bucket is self-serve mobile restaurant ordering. The idea is that ordering and paying from your table can reduce server interaction — which has Covid and non-Covid benefits considering it can save diners’ lives and their time.
AR’s impact on local is playing out in many ways, including Google’s “internet of places” aspirations to let you point your phone at storefronts to reveal information like business details and reviews. It’s also happening in brand advertising activations to let consumers visualize products in 3D through mobile AR interfaces.
M7 founder Matt Maher tells us there are several advantages to this new flavor of brand marketing. AR’s immersion creates strong consumer engagement, which can be seen in metrics like session lengths. In-store activations mean lower-funnel impact near the point of purchase.
Email is often the primary channel for restaurants to stay in touch with customers and let them know about changes. When email is done right, there are many small ways restaurants can use it to personalize messaging, drive more engagement, and make their lives easier with scalable best practices.
Restaurant chains like Wingstop, Domino’s, Panera, and Round Table have created their own skills to make it easier for people to place orders through voice assistants like Amazon’s Echo and Google Home. But before voice ordering can truly disrupt the restaurant industry, restaurants have to find ways to reduce the friction and eliminate the kinds of errors that lead to the wrong orders being delivered.
Here’s how some of the country’s top restaurant chains are overcoming the challenges associated with voice ordering and developing more frictionless customer experiences.
The numbers suggest consumers might be ready to start ordering food and beverages via voice, and voice shopping via at-home smart speakers is projected to reach $40 million in revenue by 2022. In 2020, we’ll see consumers leveraging this technology at a growing rate. In advance of this increase in adoption, restaurants will need to ensure they will be compatible with connected consumer devices.
In order to keep up with the likes of Dunkin’, Denny’s and Domino’s, restaurants of all sizes need to optimize their tech stacks and diversify their strategies.
On this week’s Location-Based Marketing Association podcast: 7-Eleven launching mobile voice ordering, Adidas testing AR Instagram in London, Amex launching a mobile restaurant booking app, Augmented Reality wine labeling with Winerytale app, Toys R Us first in Canada to use Snapchats Portal Lens, and Factual introducing predictive & loyalty audiences.
For Brandify’s local search consumer survey, consumers were asked to name the tools they’ve used in the last 30 days to find information about businesses nearby. Though a vast majority of 77% named Google Maps over any other tool, there was a significant “second tier” group including Facebook at 38%, Yelp at 35%, and business websites at 32%.
The study also asked consumers about the frequency of searches, the range of businesses for which they searched, preferred devices, and the likelihood of visiting a business after searching.
On this week’s Location-Based Marketing Association podcast: Republican campaign using beacon-enabled lawn signs, &Pizza + Lyft, WeChat battles fake GPS data, Nordstrom will deliver food to you in store, Jägermeister summons “Darke Spirits”, Chick-Fil-A launches dine-in mobile app.
The putative benefits of competing in vertically oriented channels come at a greater cost than was the case when GMB provided a unitary platform for all industries. Simply put, Google is serving the specialized needs of price-conscious travelers or those who want greater assurances when hiring a service professional, and in so doing, the company is creating additional channels to generate revenue through ads. More and more businesses will have to get used to spending their way toward greater exposure to their desired audiences — which is only odd in light of the fact that so much of local marketing has historically been organic in nature.
Ninety percent of consumers research restaurants online before dining—more than any other business type—and the vast majority of those web searches start on Google. The search giant plays an important role in the success of restaurant marketing online, making it a desirable partner for any digital platform serving the restaurant industry.
Partnering with Google often means increased search traffic and a strengthened position within the restaurant vertical, which helps to explain the enthusiasm coming from Olo’s recent announcement that it will be working with Google to allow its restaurant partners to receive orders directly from Google Search, Maps, and Google Assistant.
One area where restaurants have particularly specific needs is in promoting customer loyalty. Vertical-specific loyalty platforms for restaurants tend to have features and capabilities that more generalized loyalty platforms do not. For example, many loyalty platforms for restaurants are tied to reservation systems, so waiters know customers’ preferences before seating them at their tables.
Although the number of loyalty platforms for restaurants is growing every day, we’ve put together a list of seven important players that anyone who is interested in this space should be following.
Pared, the platform matching restaurant and hospitality workers with businesses in need of staff to cover shifts, is expanding to DC. Pared is already live in New York and San Francisco, and it plans to expand to Philadelphia, Boston, and other locations in 2020.
The San Francisco-headquartered startup claims its service offers a prime deal for workers and businesses alike. It says it offers hospitality and food service workers higher wages and flexibility while offering businesses a ready workforce amid perennially high turnover in the industry.