Ryan Williams
Jeremy Julian

Wireless POS. Is it right for your restaurant?

September 13, 2013

wifiicon

Wireless is all the over the news and people are starting to expect to have wireless everywhere. Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg is even trying to find a way for everyone to have free Internet everywhere (www.internet.org) .  With the emergence of the mobile devices in your pocket, its no wonder there is so much talk about how to deploy a wireless solution into your restaurant.

There are some big advantages to having mobile deployed in your restaurant.

  1. Speed  of Service – Food and drink orders go immediately to the kitchen and bar saving the time it takes for a server to get back to a fixed POS terminal.
  2. Quality of Service – No chance the server will forget what was to be ordered.  The entire order is sent through correctly the first time.
  3. Guest Attention – Your staff can spend more time with your guests because they will not be running between fixed POS terminals and tables.
  4. Payment Speed and Security- The payment process is quicker and easier with wireless.  Payment cards never leave the customer’s sight and payment can be facilitated in real time from the table. This also greatly reduces the issue of skimming. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Credit_card_skimming#Skimming)
  5. POS at the Table – Deploying a mobile device at the table or in the entrance to your restaurant allows guests to look up items, pay when they want, order when they want and customize to their hearts content.  Wireless enable you, the restaurant operator, to direct advertising, suggestive sell and upsell.

Some things to consider before you deploy a mobile POS solution

  1. Branding – Does a mobile solution fit your brand? Is your clientele ready for a server to be standing at your table with a mobile device or having a mobile device at the table?  Even if it’s not a fully-deployed solution, consider using it for just specific use cases such as curbside, patios, line-busting and delivery.
  2. Your Staff – Is your staff resistant to change?  Does the staff have the ability to adapt to your new mobile strategy?  Make sure your staff is ready to adopt a solution.
  3. Environment for Wireless – Are you in an older building that will require a significant investment in wireless infrastructure?  Since your POS is the heart of your restaurant, you must ensure that wireless coverage is solid.  Picking up a wireless router and hiring your high school son’s friend to deploy a wireless network is not a wise choice.  You need to pick a professional partner who is versed in wireless networking in a retail/restaurant environment.  Items such as microwaves, refrigeration and television equipment can wreak havoc on the wireless signal
  4. Wireless Coverage – Does your brand or any other brands close to your restaurant have a wireless network for guests?  If so, this can cause congestion in the wireless spectrum. Using a business class wireless tool such as Aerohive, Motorola, SonicWall or Cisco will allow you to virtually segment your network to allow the same access points and eliminate the issue with network congestion.

Overall, mobile POS is a great thing to think about.  Wireless is only getting better and your staff will continue to get younger and will expect to be able to do their job with a device in their hands.  Guests also continue to see more and more technology in their daily lives.  Whether it be at the gas station, airports or their banks, customers continue to expect technology to be part of the experience.  Do you want to be left behind and be seen as a brand that is not giving customers what they want?

Want to know more?  Check out the recording of recent CBS Webinar that we held on “Mobile POS.  What it can mean for your restaurant.”

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