These days we’ll find an app for almost anything, from monumental social tools to addictive mobile games and fitness trackers. Restaurant business owners might be of the opinion that mobile apps are only useful for a number of industries, but there are inspiring examples of innovative restaurant apps that will change their minds.

According to a recent survey, of the 11 restaurant clients participating we can assume that 40% of all visitors to your website are happening via their mobile phone.

If we had to single out one reason why restaurant owners should invest in mobile apps for their business, it’s geofencing and location targeted marketing. This software allows businesses to set up a small device in and around your business location that will send push notifications to prospective diners or visitors entering your proximity in order to lure them into action.

It’s all about location and using this to your advantage for both listings, search, promotion, and communication. A mobile app for your restaurant also allows you to inspire customer loyalty and create app only discount deals.

According to recent research, 61% of restaurant customers would be willing to download a restaurant’s app if you promised them exclusive offers and deals from time to time.

Still not convinced? Let’s learn more about these inspiring real Restaurant Apps.

Domino’s Pizza

International franchises like Domino’s Pizza also understand the power of mobile apps for business growth and marketing. Building your own pizza has never been this easy. Choose from toppings from presets and place and track your order. The app also featured a map where the restaurant locations are geotagged. Their smooth UI and simple UX makes for one of the best examples of food and drink mobile applications.

Rhino Coffee

People love their coffee, and Rhino Coffee is well aware of this need. That’s why their app is used as a reward system and loyalty program. The mobile app enables you to pay with your phone and earn rewards by doing so. It also shows you the menu and locations available in your area. Rhino Coffee is a great example of how you can use your restaurant app to inspire loyalty and returning visitors.

Starbucks

If it’s statistics you’re looking for to be convinced of the power of mobile apps for your restaurant, Starbucks is your proof. They were one of the first companies to use the mobile app channel for business growth. Back in 2011, they spent over $1 million to accept QR-code payments, and it paid off.

About 21% of Starbucks transactions are done via mobile app, with an estimated 11 million people currently signed up to the Starbucks mobile application.

Mini Bar

As we know, e-commerce is all the rage. If your institution also offers online purchases, a mobile app can really boost your sales. Mini Bar is a great example of a niche service and product that utilizes the power of mobile. This company understands the need for people to have liquor delivered to their homes, whether they’re throwing a last minute party or want to have a gift delivered to a friend’s home. The company delivers to various locations, showing they understand the need for a mobile app to reach their demographic. The design is user-friendly and aesthetically pleasing.

Chipotle

Chipotle shows that ‘easy does it’. The application itself isn’t complicated and the interface isn’t overpowering. This restaurant understands our culture of instant gratification, so instead of standing in line, you can place your order in advance. This is ideal during rush hours and you’re able to skip the queue to pick up your order.

Designing a Mobile App for Your Restaurant

Restaurants that do offer a take-out menu should jump at the opportunity of having their own mobile app. One study revealed that 73% of takeaway owners agreed that phones being engaged at peak times was a significant issue for the business.

After viewing those examples and reading the statistics, it’s almost shocking to note that only 4.8% of retailers have a mobile specific application for their establishment. Isn’t it time to give your customers what they want?

Consider the following benefits of investing in a restaurant app:

  • Gain more reviews and testimonials
  • Offer convenient solutions for your customers
  • Increase your reach and access to guests
  • Make use of geotagging for push notifications
  • Simplify the order process
  • Lighten the workload of your in-house staff
  • Build an army of loyal customers
  • Offer rewards and incentives to increase returning visitors
  • Gain the competitive edge in your area
  • Allow in-app purchasing of merchandise and products
  • Collect valuable marketing data
  • Increase the number of orders and bookings

Millennials are the largest generation at 80 million and have a tremendous amount of buying power. This includes spending money on eating out, of which Millennials spend about $174/month, which is $21/month more than other generations.

Building an app for your restaurant doesn’t have to be a complicated process. There are numerous design companies and agencies that can assist. If you trust your own hand at creating your mobile app, you can also make use of App Builders and Templates.

Of course, your mobile app will be representative of your brand and can either boost or damage your restaurant’s credibility.

Although possible, it is advised to go against creating your own product. Professional developers specialize in creating the appropriate accounts, order systems and accurate geolocation for your restaurant. The rise of app development also means that the process can be cost-effective.

Consulting with app developers will also give you insight into the industry and how to effectively manage your application and profit from the software.

As a restaurant owner, you want to give your customers what they’re hungry for. Take this opportunity to increase brand visibility, gain access to nearby customers, showcase images of your delicious menu, build a rewards program and track valuable data for your marketing strategy.

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