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Mobile Ordering

The State of Online Ordering

  • October 14, 2015
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The Center for Hospitality Research tells us in its Cornell Hospitality Report [Vol. 11,No. 17] that “Consumers are embracing online ordering because of its ease, speed and precision, while restaurants see the potential for increased revenue and fewer errors.”

Indeed, more than one-quarter of those surveyed at the time had adopted online ordering, with more than 42% of the non-adopters planning to implement online ordering within two years. This is important, as the National Restaurant Association (NRA) has stated that 61% consumers have visited a restaurant’s website. They are, in larger and larger numbers, looking for technology that allows them to order online.

The Cornell study showed that all surveyed restaurateurs who had invested in online ordering believe that online ordering has met or exceeded their expectations on ROI,and it uncovered five major benefits to online ordering:

  1. Convenience
  2. Control over the ordering process (big for consumer respondents)
  3. Considerable increase in order frequency
  4. Savings in labor
  5. Order accuracy

But with success, the definition of online ordering is shifting. An oft-cited statistic by eMarketer shows that local mobile searches (85.9 billion) are projected to exceed desktop searches (84 billion) for the first time in 2015. While the number of smartphone users now rivals desktop users, actual online visits from smartphones are twofold that of visits made from desktops.

Restaurants account for the second highest incidents of smartphone use at 64 percent. And more importantly, restaurants have a massive 80% conversion rate from a search to a purchase/visit – the highest across all categories. The NRA says that 52% of customers have said they would use a mobile device for delivery or takeout, if available, increasing the frequency of visits to restaurants that provide the option.

What’s more, a study conducted by the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) and Viggle found that consumers are increasingly using their mobile devices to find out restaurant locations, check out menus and see other users’ reviews, and that 69% of online food ordering is done using a smartphone or tablet.

“Restaurant marketers should consider these insights when planning for future mobile campaigns. Mobile users are clearly looking for benefits to motivate them into transitioning their food ordering experience onto their smartphone or tablet,” said Greg Consiglio, Viggle President and Chief Operating Officer.

Overall, the general consensus is that “online” is mobile when it comes to restaurants, and will continue to be driven that way more and more.

Categories: Mobile Ordering
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