Technology is integral to consumers’ dining experiences, according to a study commissioned by ParTech, in New Hartford, New York.

“The results of the restaurant consumer survey highlight just how early technology now becomes involved in the dining consumer’s thought process and how pervasive technology is in delivering an interactive restaurant experience,” says Scott Langdoc, chief technology officer, ParTech.

This illustrates, he says, that traditional marketing, loyalty, and POS systems are not sufficient to remain competitive, and operators who embrace technology “are set up to win in a very big way.”

A total of 1,277 consumers in the U.S. and Canada completed the study last fall to assess the broad impact of current and future restaurant technologies entirely from the view of the paying customer. The study’s findings show that:

  • A very successful shift to targeted restaurant promotions is underway.
  • Technology creates proportionally more opportunities with frequent diners.
  • Social networks are changing restaurant marketing—forever. • Real-time order influence works.
  • The “Millennials” demographic (age 16 to 24) are influenced very differently than the average restaurant customer.

The study also shows that:

  • 52 percent of dining customers have selected a restaurant solely because of an online (banner) advertisement or email offer.
  • 66 percent of frequent diners (5+ times a week) would like servers to use mobile ordering technology.
  • 42 percent of consumers have eaten at a previously unvisited restaurant solely because of information gathered online from user-generated reviews at sites like Epinions, OpenTable, Yelp, or Zagat.
  • 62 percent of respondents said they “might consider” or “seriously consider” changing their order based on a specific discount, combo, or promotional offer made during the creation of a restaurant order (via either POS terminal or server).
  • 72 percent of the “Millennials” demographic expressed serious interest in receiving location-based restaurant offers on their mobile phones.

ParTech says that a new business strategy combined with the latest supporting technology will be at the heart of restaurants staying ahead. It also points out that its analysis of the study shows conclusively that technology’s impact on the restaurant consumer is more effective and valuable than ever.

Industry News, Marketing & Promotions, Technology