Digital Ordering

What to Look for When Choosing an Online Ordering System

Discover the essential ingredients for a sumptuous online ordering experience.
Trace Mannewitz

In an era where convenience is king and digital reigns supreme, the right online ordering system can be the crown jewel of your restaurant's operations. As we delve into the art of selecting the perfect system, let's embark on a culinary journey, exploring the essential ingredients needed for a sumptuous online ordering experience.

Understanding Your Restaurant's Needs

Before you set the table, know who you're serving. Your restaurant is unique - be it a cozy café or a bustling pizzeria. Each has its flavor and needs. Identify what tickles your customers' taste buds: Do they relish a quick takeaway or savor a leisurely dine-in? Understanding these nuances helps in choosing a system that's tailor-fit to your restaurant.

The Importance of UX

The perfect recipe for an online ordering system? Start with a dash of simplicity and a sprinkle of elegance. A user-friendly interface isn't just the cherry on top; it's the whole dessert. It should invite your customers in with its appeal and keep them coming back with its ease – like a favorite comfort food.

The quickest way to lose your customers' interest is to have your online or mobile app ordering be a headache to use. Test your online ordering with people of varying technical know-how to make sure that anyone and everyone can use your system.

Integration Capabilities

Think of your restaurant as a symphony and the online ordering system as one of the instruments. It needs to harmonize with your current POS system, creating a melody that resonates efficiently. Ensure it integrates with your CRM software and inventory systems so the business runs as smoothly as possible. 

White-Label Opportunity

Online ordering is typically associated with delivery services such as Doordash and Uber Eats. While these are great and provide a myriad of benefits for restaurants, they don't carry the same level of design and branding that you would for your own system. 

Your online ordering system is your chance to change that. The system should mirror the personality of your restaurant. Customize it to reflect your brand's ethos – whether it's classic, chic, or avant-garde. This customization extends to your menu, too; it should be as dynamic and updateable as seasonal specials.

Data and Payments

Payment Processing and Security

In the world of online ordering, the transaction is the final act of the show. Ensure it's secure, swift, and versatile. A system that supports various payment methods while guarding customer data is non-negotiable.

Analytics and Reporting Tools

Data is the secret ingredient of your restaurant's success recipe. A robust online ordering system offers analytics that uncovers trends and patterns like a sommelier understands wine. Use these insights to adapt, evolve, and tailor your offerings.

Customer Support and Service

Even the best kitchens need support. Choose a system backed by a team as responsive and reliable as a seasoned waitstaff. Whether it's a technical glitch or a user query, timely assistance ensures your digital dining experience is always top-notch.

Pricing Structure and Hidden Costs

Talk money before you set the menu. Understand the pricing structure of the online ordering system. Is it a subscription model or a one-time setup fee? Be wary of hidden costs lurking like unwelcome dinner guests. Ensure the investment is justified by the return, much like choosing ingredients for a signature dish.

Reviews and Reputation

Finally, do your homework. Just as diners check reviews before picking a restaurant, read up on what others have to say about the system. Reputation in the digital world is as important as in the culinary one.

Choosing the Right Online Order System For You

Choosing the right online ordering system for your restaurant is like crafting a fine meal. It requires thought, understanding, and a touch of creativity. With the right system, your restaurant isn't just serving food; it's delivering experiences. Remember, in this digital culinary adventure, the right tools make all the difference between a good meal and a great one. Bon Appétit!