The UEAT Blog

The Rise of Restaurant Technology

Posted on
June 21, 2023
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UEAT featured as a major online ordering player in The Spoon’s 2021 Restaurant Tech Ecosystem report 

The Spoon, a news outlet that provides daily unbiased reporting and insight into the food tech revolution, recently released its 2021 Restaurant Tech Ecosystem report. Jointly developed with TechTable and Culterra Capital, and sponsored by Back of the House, the 2021 Restaurant Tech Ecosystem draws an easy-to-understand portrait of restaurateurs’ technology landscape. 

And in the restaurant technology ecosystem report, UEAT has been deemed a major player in online and contactless ordering!

 

A restaurant technology report unlike any other

The global pandemic has definitely taken its toll on the restaurant industry, with lockdowns causing sharp declines in on-premise revenues, an alarming labor shortage even during reopenings, and an uncertain future for many restaurateurs as they navigate the new normal. 

COVID-19 also forced even the most recalcitrant restaurant owners and managers to embark on a digital transformation in order to survive. Some opted to only use third-party online marketplaces, despite their hefty commissions, in order to stay afloat. Many decided to invest in their own white-label online ordering solutions and mobile apps, like with UEAT. Still others adopted a hybrid strategy, leveraging the potential of both approaches. 

As the 2021 report also found, the health crisis also paved the way for next-generation technology providers to optimize and improve many aspects of a restaurant’s business—be it online ordering, mobile-only experiences, kitchen automation, artificial intelligence to streamline operations, data analytics and more. When looking at the 2021 Restaurant Tech Ecosystem map, you’ll be amazed at just how many new entrants are upping the ante so that technology is better put to work for restaurants—not the other way around.

 

Technology: A short-term salvation or long-term business strategy?

As the research firm McKinsey and Company indicated in their 2020 study, entitled How restaurants can thrive in the next normal, “digital maturity—a strong online-ordering presence, digital loyalty programs, and robust customer-relationship-management (CRM) systems have been lifelines for restaurants during this crisis, as levels of digital engagement among consumers have soared.”

While high-tech solutions and services were an undeniable salvation for the restaurant industry during the pandemic, they will become mainstays post-COVID for restaurants to literally stay in business.

McKinsey and Company continues to recommend that restaurants will need to adapt to changing customers preferences, even as the recovery, or new normal, continues. As the study reads: 

“The digital customer experience will be critical to retaining current customers and capturing next-generation loyalty, and the best way to enhance the digital experience is through deep personalization. Engage customers with personalized offers across multiple digital channels; use customer data to make decisions about merchandising, pricing, and promotions.”

Analysts at Deloitte agree. Their analysis, The restaurant of the future, is the fruit of consumer and restaurant brand surveys that provide compelling stats regarding evolving customer demand and restaurants’ business strategies. 

On the customer side, they are “ordering a different experience,” with nearly half maintaining the number of deliveries and take-out they enjoyed during COVID-19…after COVID-19. Convenience, frictionless digital experiences, and omni-channel ordering options are definitely fan faves for the foreseeable future.

How can restaurants respond to these emerging trends? By “focusing on off-premise innovation, regaining control of delivery (to safeguard margins, customer data, and customer relationships), and delivering on digital.

While nobody can predict the future, one thing is for sure: forward-thinking restaurateurs who capitalize on new technology to improve every facet of their businesses will mitigate the short-term pain and ensure long-term success.

Restaurateur crunching numbers

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