December 4, 2018
How The Restaurant Industry Will Be Transformed By AI
By Breck Hapner

Some are loathing its emergence. Others can’t wait to see what it will do for the future of business. What is it? Artificial intelligence (AI) for restaurants. You are probably wondering how the restaurant industry will be transformed by AI.

Perhaps you’ve already heard about how it’s going to affect manufacturing, healthcare and retail. But did you know that there are massive implications for the restaurant industry as well?

The best time to get started with AI is now. Doing so will ensure that you stay ahead of the curve.

You’ll be able to leverage the latest technology services for restaurants to boost your customer service, enhance online ordering, make personalized recommendations, and improve your in-store experience.

 

How Can Artificial Intelligence Help My Business?

 

There may come a day when AI starts making everything on your menu. But let’s not get too ahead of ourselves.

Some of the biggest opportunities for AI in restaurants right now mostly revolve around digital  applications and marketing.

And, we all know how important digital channels are right now, whether it’s applications, e-commerce, web, mobile, video, social media or otherwise.

But let’s get into how restaurants can leverage this technology to enhance their digital operations..

First, we have chatbots and apps. They’ve received quite a bit of coverage as of late, and they have shown to be quite effective. You can have chatbots handle customer inquiries, take orders and more.

Many consumers prefer talking to chatbots over real human beings, and the fact that they are available 24/7 is a huge plus.

Second, there’s recommendation engines for digital ordering. As you can probably guess, using a recommendation engine allows you to upsell and cross-sell to customers based on their dining behavior.

This has the potential to increase the purchase size of every order, which could also boost your Customer Lifetime Value (CLV).

The third category might be one you’re quite familiar with already, and that’s self-serve kiosks for restaurants.

As an example, smart kiosk apps leverage AI for facial recognition, which brings up the guest order automatically, remembering past orders, and recommending loyalty & rewards usage and/or promotions, etc.

Kiosks allow your customers to make orders and pay without having to stand in line. They can then wait by the counter or at a table for their order to be ready.

There are other significant developments emerging in AI and restaurant technology, such as dashboards & business intelligence for restaurants.  

But the previously mentioned three categories are a good starting point if you’re thinking about getting into AI.

 

Getting A Head Start On Your Competition

 

Perhaps the best reason to get a head start on your competition is so that you can stand out from the crowd.

AI may be new technology now. But give it time. Soon, many restaurants will be utilizing it to enhance their customer experience and grow their revenue.

You’ve probably seen AI at work in many popular and growing restaurants already.

If you wait too long, AI will no longer be disruptive or innovative. It will become the norm.

Wouldn’t you like to have a competitive advantage? Wouldn’t you love to serve your customers in a way your competitors aren’t?

Further, wouldn’t you love to be able to offer your customers a consistent user experience (UX) development experience?

Automating customer support is possible with the latest tech. That means you or your team members can be less hands-on while technology handles your customers and points them in the right direction.

That can help you save on staffing costs while delighting and surprising your customers.

 

Final Thoughts

 

We live in exciting times. With the help of AI technology, such as IBM Watson, many businesses will be able to leverage kiosks to increase digital ordering while reducing their workforce and expenses, increasing their efficiency and bottom line.

But the restaurant industry is a competitive one. It can be quite challenging to win over customers and keep them coming back when there are so many options to choose from.

If you want to get a head start on your peers, it’s time to implement the tech that will help you do just that.

 

Marketing Director Breck Hapner handles the development and implementation of Chepri brand strategy, builds content for new and existing services/solutions, and oversees the implementation of campaigns, digital marketing, events, and PR.

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