Trends for QSR
Quick Service Restaurants (QSR) are part of a fast paced, highly competitive industry that is always looking for opportunities for innovation. It is essential for such businesses to continually grow to meet consumer demands and trends. They are renowned for their use of innovation and often lead the way with their groundbreaking technology.
Technology forms a vital part of the QSR industry, playing a fundamental role in the evolution of establishments into what they are today. As we look towards the future of QSR industry, technology will continue to change and shape the way forward for the QSR operations.
Self Order Kiosks
Self ordering kiosks are currently the biggest trend heading into the future, with more and more establishments introducing this capability. Whilst many QSR are already utilising the kiosks, the technology in this space has advanced. They are part of a process to further automate operations, freeing up staff to complete other tasks.
The kiosks are introducing facial recognition software, allowing them to recognise a face and ‘remember’ their previous order. As more data becomes available to the fast food giants, they will be able to use this data to predict and influence consumer behaviours. For example, they may use factors such as the weather, time of day, and inventory to display particular items to the consumer, encouraging the desired purchase behaviours. Further to this, integrations such as voice controlled kiosks allow consumers who are vision impaired to take advantage of the convenient technology, ultimately making the entire QSR experience more accessible.
A major advantage of this new POS software is the ability to remove human error. The self ordering kiosks will never be rude to customers and will never forget to upsell. Research has shown customers are more likely to spend more using the kiosk, making them a valuable investment for any QSR.
At Home Voice Ordering
Voice command technology is making waves through many consumer facing industries, as well as in the home. As we move towards a hands-free era, voice enabled technology is being rapidly developed, allowing it to be integrated into more facets of our daily routine.
Software such as Alexa, Google Home and Siri are all being tested to be used for voice ordering, allowing consumers to order their regular pizza from the comfort of their couch, without even lifting a finger. The key target for this technology is millennials, with data suggesting that 25% of 16-24 year olds use voice search on mobiles, and it is estimated that by 2020, 50% of all searches will be voice searches according to the Global Web Index.
Plant Based Offering
Australia is in the midst of a health and wellness boom, and as a result consumers are more informed than ever about the impact of what they are eating to their health. As a result, Australians are becoming more conscious of their lifestyle choices, and many are opting to adopt more plant based options in their diets.
Up until recently, plant based options have been very limited or unavailable throughout the QSR industry, and were only requested by vegetarians or vegans. As consumers eating behaviours are changing, they are demanding more options be available, QSR’s have to embrace this new trend or be left behind. Many restaurants have already started introducing a range of plant based options to their menus. Dominos recently introduced their vegan summer bbq range and the option to add vegan cheese to any pizza, after its overwhelming popularity they introduced it as a regular menu item.
Consumers are becoming increasingly time poor, and are expecting more on demand offerings from the brands they interact with. What was once only available to metropolitan areas, has now expanded its wings and has become available in suburban and regional locations. Food delivery services are thriving, with driver mapping technology undergoing massive improvements, to increase the speed of delivery. By finding the most efficient route, and updating the driver, and showing the status of the driver to the customer food is able to be brought to the consumer quicker.
As we look towards the future, technology is having a massive impact in this area, brands are currently testing driverless cars and introducing drone food delivery services. Drone delivery isn’t as far away as we think, Google, Amazon and Uber are currently doing tests to introduce drone delivery service, with so many deep pocketed companies getting involved we can expect to see this technology being brought to us shortly. Consumers seek instant gratification, they want their food as soon as they order it, drones are much quicker than cars with each delivery averaging around 5-10 minutes, in comparison to a cars 10-30 minute average.
The QSR has already made leaps and bounds with the progression of their technology, looking to the future this industry will continue to innovate to meet the expectations and demands of consumers.