At this point, almost every restaurant owner has heard of online ordering. And for thousands of business owners around the world, online ordering systems have already boosted revenue, increased ticket prices, streamlined ordering, and added a host of other benefits. But that doesn’t mean that some restaurant owners aren’t wary of adopting the new technologies and practices associated with online ordering. Every business owner has a right to choose how to run their business, and lots of restaurant owners simply don’t choose to look into an online ordering solution.
However, for many restaurant owners, the choice not to sign up for an online ordering system is based on some persistent myths about the technology. Every business owner should be able to make whatever choices they see as being best for their business, but it’s best when those choices are based on solid facts rather than myths and misconceptions.
So, for all of the restaurant owners out there still on the fence about a service like Orders2Me, here are the 3 most persistent myths about online ordering.
For many restaurant owners, it seems like common sense that a service as new and revolutionary as online ordering would come along with a huge price tag. But for most business owners, adopting an online ordering system will actually lead to big net profits.
Unless your POS comes natively with online ordering (like NorthStar Order Entry), there are two main pricing models for online ordering systems. Most big vendors like Eat24 and GrubHub take a percentage of every ticket that you process with their systems, essentially cutting down on your profits per dish. And for these types of online ordering systems, prices can indeed be prohibitive; your dishes probably already have a narrow profit margin, and the percentage that Eat24 or another big company skims off of the top can mean that your orders barely make you anything after labor costs, or even result in a small loss per order.
But there is a second type of online ordering pricing system, which vendors like Orders2Me think is a little more realistic. Using a pre-built, user-friendly portal, restaurant operators pay a small monthly fee for as many orders as they can process. With a pricing model like that, restaurant owners can quickly get ahead, since the more orders you sell to online customers, the smaller per dish fee you really pay. If a restaurant owner chooses the right system for their goals, utilizes a service with a small monthly fee and brings in even a humble number of orders, online ordering can end up being very profitable. It’s no myth that some systems are too expensive, but choose the right one, and expense concerns are squashed.
Restaurants can be chaotic, and for the business owners that manage them, it can seem like a daunting idea to throw in any variable that will shake things up. Specifically, restaurant owners often shy away from adopting an online ordering system because they think that online ordering systems will take a lot of training to adopt.
For most online ordering systems though, there is very little impact on restaurant staff, and very little training required for adoption. From the server and front of house staff’s perspective, there are really no big changes. In fact, your server staff may not have to field as many phone orders, giving them time to focus on their guests in the dining room. As for the back of house staff like chefs and cooks, there isn’t too much change either if you choose the right system. Eat24 integrates with your existing order printing system, and allows your kitchen staff to process online orders in stride with the ones that come in from servers. Generally, there’s little to train your staff on when implementing online ordering.
It’s obvious how much online ordering does for customers, but for many restaurant owners, it doesn’t seem like online ordering will do much for their business. This is a big myth, and a hard one to unpack. But restaurant owners should know that if they pick the right online ordering system, they will see some immediate benefits to their business. From increased ticket prices to more take-out and delivery orders, you’re putting your menu in front of hungry internet users who are just waiting for you to satisfy their hunger pangs in a hurry. This ultimately means more profit for your restaurant and a much more efficient restaurant to boot. If you want more info about why this myth is false, browse the rest of our blog.
Is online ordering for every restaurant owner? Not always. But for those that want to put their menu to work online to help feed hungry browsers, the benefits should very much outweigh the myths. And when clear decisions are marred by misconceptions, your business may be missing out on a major slice of the pie!
Rafi Cohen, a graduate of Baruch College & Brooklyn native is the Co-Founder at Orders2Me, an online ordering platform that gives restaurant owners all the features they need to grow their business in the digital age.