Contactless POS systems are here to stay. They accelerated the digital revolution sweeping the restaurant industry, keep customers at a safe distance from staff, and offer businesses a means of collecting valuable information about their customers and their business.
Restaurant technologists happen to agree. Since the COVID-19 pandemic forced restaurants to adopt contactless payment systems, several companies have created technologies that help customers better control their experience. Some products include mobile payment and tipping systems that sync with a restaurant’s POS system, thereby allowing business owners to turn tables and offer their customer to-go and takeout options.
While products like Lightspeed’s restaurant eCommerce package are designed to help business owners maintain their budgets, they can also be used to increase customer loyalty—something that can help a business thrive long into the future.
Using a digital loyalty plan, restaurants can keep their customers informed of the latest news, expand their to-go and delivery sales, and offer customers a safe and convenient service.
How to Create a Digital Loyalty Program
As more customers turn to contactless payment methods, businesses need to keep up by offering digital loyalty programs to keep connected.
These loyalty programs allow customers to accrue points from each purchase they make at your restaurant and redeem them for experiences or prizes later. Oftentimes these programs rely on QR code technology that connects to a restaurant’s POS system to track the sales and associated data from the transactions.
The way they work is a customer will scan a QR code with their smartphone which then populates your restaurant’s digital menu or website. The POS system can then be programmed to track each time a customer visits the restaurant and scans the QR code.
But, digital loyalty programs are not the only way contactless POS systems can increase customer loyalty for restaurants. Here are a few other ways:
Limit Contact with an In-Seat Experience
One of the reasons customers say they are reluctant to return to restaurants is that they do not feel safe in crowded public spaces. So, it is a restaurant’s job to earn back that trust and offer their customers a safe and healthy experience.
Using tableside ordering systems like TouchBistro or NCR’s Aloha System brings the restaurant experience right to the customer’s fingertips. Some programs offer a completely touch-free experience, allow customers to order, pay, and tip all with minimal interaction.
Expand Access to Mobile Payments
Recent figures show that customers are turning to mobile payments more frequently than ever before. A report by COM, a mobile payment company, found that there were over 441 million Apple Pay users worldwide in 2019, and that number is expected to grow significantly following the COVID-19 pandemic.
Ensuring your restaurant has the ability to accept mobile payments is an easy way to keep your customers loyal. They want convenience and safety. Mobile payment options give them both.
The data collected by loyalty programs and contactless payments help business owners form targeted marketing campaigns that can drive up customer loyalty. It is far cheaper and more effective than traditional marketing means. Gone are the days of sending a delivery driver out on the streets with a car full of flyers. No more newspaper advertisements either.
Increased data collection also allows business owners to increase their engagement with customers. Business owners can send special coupons or deals to customers on their birthdays, for their anniversaries, or provide other perks.
One popular way to use this data is to run contests. Everyone enjoys winning, even if it’s just a free side or drink. Some contest ideas include in-store selfies, taking pictures with your products, and making a popular hashtag on social media. Restaurants that share the user-generated content from these contests are almost guaranteed to see their digital engagement increase.