Interview • 15.09.2015

“88 percent of customers prefer to use self-service systems at the table as opposed to at a kiosk”

Interview with Justin Guinn, Market Researcher, Software Advice

Justin Guinn: Casual restaurant patrons are interested in getting in, eating,...
Justin Guinn: "Casual restaurant patrons are interested in getting in, eating, and getting out of there as quickly as possible."
Source: Software Advice
Self-Service is not only a trend in retail, but also in restaurants. We spoke with Justin Guinn, market researcher at Software Advice, a company that offers insights on restaurant POS systems about his recent report on the topic.

Mr. Guinn, self-service POS technology is growing in restaurants who want to offer a different way for customers to order and pay for their food, but do the customers actually want to use the technology?

Customers do indeed want to use self-service POS technologies when dining out at restaurants. Our report shows that a majority (54%) of consumers would use self-service POS systems if given the option. From an age standpoint, the data actually indicates that nearly three-quarters (71%) of millennials (age 18 - 34 yrs old) would prefer to use self-service technology over a traditional dining format.

What do consumers most want from these systems?

In terms of ordering features, our report indicates that the ability to ‘customize orders’ is what nearly half of customers (47%) want to do most with these self-service systems. For the next most preferred feature, over a quarter (26%) of customers want to see pictures of the menu items. Both of these options offer great opportunities for restaurants to upsell products and can really stretch the average amount of a table’s check. Not only could the additional add-ons and customizable options bump sales, but featuring certain sides, sauces, toppings, etc. in the menu item images could entice customers to upgrade.

When looking at payment functionalities of these systems, ‘splitting the bill’ is the most preferred payment feature with 39% and ‘using multiple forms of payment’ is second with 31%. These are common pain points that are often fumbled during the payment process, so enabling customers to tackle these tasks themselves removes the risk from the server and enables customers to get the bill exactly how they want it.

The report shows that casual and fast casual restaurants are most preferred for...
The report shows that casual and fast casual restaurants are most preferred for self-ordering and self-paying features.
Source: Software Advice
Did you see any trends in terms of the type of restaurant where people would like to utilize self-service technology?

The report shows that casual and fast casual restaurants are most preferred for self-ordering and self-paying features. For casual restaurants, 50% of customers prefer to self-pay. This could indicate that casual restaurant patrons are interested in getting in, eating, and getting out of there as quickly as possible. Self-payment systems definitely lend themselves well to this approach. In the United States, this has been growing with popularity amongst some of the largest casual dining chains throughout the country. These systems eliminate the need for servers to drop a bill, wait for a payment, process the payment, then return a receipt. Really, a table could order and then self-pay in a much quicker amount of time.

Was there any other finding from the report that surprised you?

We were surprised to find that 88% of customers prefer to use these self-service systems at the table as opposed to at a kiosk upon arrival. The implication here is that customers want to come in, sit down, and start their dining experience. Also, there’s a learning experience that’s tied to these self-service systems. So having a queue at the front of the restaurant with people waiting for others to finish ordering, may not be the best approach. Not to mention, it’s logistically impractical to have the system at the front as opposed to the table. Table-top systems should lead to much higher tickets with additional, perhaps impulse, ordering that the front of restaurant kiosk just can’t offer.

A majority of consumers would use self-service POS systems if given the option....
A majority of consumers would use self-service POS systems if given the option.
Source: Software Advice
Do you think this technology is something every restaurant should be considering? Even smaller businesses?

These self-service systems can prove to be tremendously valuable for restaurants big or small; the caveat being that it must make sense for the restaurant. If a restaurant’s menu consists of twenty items that aren’t highly customizable, then these systems aren’t the best fit. On the other hand, a restaurant specializing in highly-customizable items like pizzas or sandwiches could really benefit from a table-top self-ordering system.

Additionally, just as the menu needs to make sense for self-service adoption, so to does the target demographic of a restaurant need to make sense. As I mentioned before, our data shows that 71% of millennials (ages 18 to 34), and 57% of 35 to 54 year-olds would prefer to self-order. So these systems make sense for businesses that cater to those demographics. But only 34% of customers 55 and older prefer to use the systems, so it wouldn’t make sense if they’re a restaurant’s primary customer.

The point is, it may be easy to see these systems as a passing novelty in the ever evolving restaurant technology landscape. That’s not the case though. These systems can have very lasting ramifications (both positive and negative) that can make or break restaurants.

Interview: Danuel Stöter, iXtenso

related articles:

popular articles:

Thumbnail-Photo: retail trends: focus Retail Technology
12.02.2019   #mobile shopping #digital marketing

retail trends: focus "Retail Technology"

Omnichannel commerce, mobile shopping, seamless checkout – technology trends 2019

Would you like to find out about the latest retail technologies and hold something tangible in your hands at the same time?We'll be happy to send you a copy of our print edition retail trends: with the focus on "Retail Technology" ...

Thumbnail-Photo: 3D shop and customer analysis with artificial intelligence...
04.02.2019   #customer analysis #Trade fair special EuroCIS 2019

3D shop and customer analysis with artificial intelligence

Product innovation at EuroCIS: Intenta S1000 people counter

Intenta presents the new Intenta S1000 people counter at this year’s EuroCIS – a new 3D vision sensor for fully automatic intelligent scene interpretations. This retail specialist tracks precise data for customer statistics thus giving ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Digital Signage Summit (DSS) Europe
07.05.2019   #digital signage #digitization

Digital Signage Summit (DSS) Europe

iXtenso readers receive a 30% ticket-discount!

The two-day event comprises a comprehensive mix of twin-track conference programme; hands-on workshops; exclusive presentations; numerous networking opportunities and a vendor and service supplier exhibition area.In 2019, DSS Europe returns to the ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Robots in retail: producer and salesperson all-in-one at the fully...
15.03.2019   #artificial intelligence #customer retention

Robots in retail: producer and salesperson all-in-one at the fully automated kiosk

Interview with Matthias Krinke, Managing Director of pi4_robotics GmbH

At Berlin’s shopping mall Bikini Berlin, we meet the robot “Gisela”. The robot’s designer Matthias Krinke sat down with us and explained what she can do and revealed what the retail industry can expect from her and her ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Online inventory management system
06.05.2019   #online trading #e-commerce

Online inventory management system

5 things e-commerce retailers should look for

In order to perform online efficiently as an Internet retailer, one needs to choose the most effective inventory management system. Its main features should include centralised user interface, full automation, automated stock checking and ...

Thumbnail-Photo: APG Cash Drawer: new SMARTtill business development manager...
15.05.2019   #cash management #cash handling systeme

APG Cash Drawer: new SMARTtill business development manager

APG Cash Drawer announces hire of SMARTtill business development manager

APG Cash Drawer, a fast-growing global manufacturer of cash management solutions, announced today the addition of Tony Pusateri as SMARTtill Business Development Manager. ...

Thumbnail-Photo: SES-imagotag VUSION Pulse Software
30.01.2019   #data warehouse management #software management

SES-imagotag VUSION Pulse Software

Improve Profitability and Reduce Waste

For 25 years, SES-imagotag has been the trusted partner of retailers for digital technology in stores. SES-imagotag, the worldwide leader in smart digital labels and pricing automation, develops a comprehensive IoT and digital platform that delivers ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Toshiba spotlights new innovations for empowering retail...
21.01.2019   #mobile payment #payment systems

Toshiba spotlights new innovations for empowering retail

Showcasing its latest solutions, services and innovative concepts at hall 9 booth B42

Visitors to EuroCIS 2019 will learn at Toshiba's booth how every retailer can design his checkout to suit his and the customers' needs. Under the motto "Empowering the Art of Retail", Toshiba will present its end-to-end IT ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Social commerce 2.0: artificial intelligence detects purchase intention...
18.04.2019   #e-commerce #sustainability

Social commerce 2.0: artificial intelligence detects purchase intention

Choosy analyzes fashion trends on Instagram – and redesigns them

The fashion world moves at lightning speed – and more than ever thanks to the rise of social media. In the past, key trends emerged off the runways twice a year during fashion weeks. Now Instagram et al. set the tone daily thanks to feeds of ...

Thumbnail-Photo: E-commerce: AI-powered translations revitalize business...
29.04.2019   #online trading #e-commerce

E-commerce: AI-powered translations revitalize business

Interview with Boris Zielonka, Director Marketing & Sales, Eurotext AG

Retailers who set up an online store can expand their business – especially if they create a multilingual content strategy.As a language and translation service, Eurotext AG supports retailers in this endeavor. From this conversation with ...


Casio Europe GmbH
Casio Europe GmbH
CASIO-Platz 1
22848 Norderstedt
ROQQIO Commerce Solutions GmbH
ROQQIO Commerce Solutions GmbH
Harburger Schloßstraße 28
21079 Hamburg
Intenta GmbH
Intenta GmbH
Ahornstraße 55
09112 Chemnitz
MobiMedia AG
MobiMedia AG
Rottpark 24
84347 Pfarrkirchen
AURES Technologies GmbH
AURES Technologies GmbH
Maisacherstr. 118
82256 Fürstenfeldbruck
CCV Deutschland GmbH
CCV Deutschland GmbH
Gewerbering 1
84072 Au i.d.Hallertau
EUROEXPO Messe- und Kongress-GmbH
EUROEXPO Messe- und Kongress-GmbH
Joseph-Dollinger-Bogen 9
80807 München
Flinger Broich 203
40235 Düsseldorf
Axis Communications GmbH
Axis Communications GmbH
Adalperostraße 86
85737 Ismaning