A new year (and new decade) comes with forward-looking lists of ideas, goals and the latest developments — but which matter for your operation? We spoke with members of the Antunes product and sales teams to hear their thoughts on trends that will be important for operators in the year ahead.
Delivery and Pick Up
- Delivery and pick up services will continue to grow as customers desire the convenience of not eating at the restaurant. Traditional pizza delivery has competition as restaurants and third-party delivery services offer customers options from a variety of cuisines — from Mexican, Indian or Japanese to barbecue, Greek, Korean or Cuban. Consumers looking for specific diets, such as organic or vegetarian/vegan, also have increased offerings via delivery.
As delivery and pick up increase, there are also increased considerations on how to get food to customers without compromising the integrity of the menu items. Packaging has to improve to maintain the quality and temperature of food.
To-go and delivery packaging should also be environmentally friendly. Nielsen’s recent global sustainability report states that 81% of respondents feel strongly that companies should help improve the environment. Eco-friendly packaging could be a deciding factor for consumers, especially younger generations.
Apps for Ordering
Data proves that apps that are easy to use by people in various demographic categories and across different levels of experience with technology continue to grow, along with revenues. According to Business of Apps, downloads of the top-five food delivery apps doubled between 2016 and 2018.
- A recent NRN article states that Chipotle’s digital business has increased to $1 billion in sales. Since there will be an influx of digital orders, restaurants may need to plan their kitchens differently so that the dining room business is not interrupted. Chipotle has a separate digital make line set up for this specific purpose.
- In addition to offering convenience for the customer, apps that track consumer choices can be used by operators and chains to identify targets for food offerings at more dayparts.
Companies that launch apps should be prepared and take steps to ensure that the system doesn’t crash with the increased demand. More and more customers expect apps to be available and are ready to use them.
Connected kitchens will start to take off as the technology matures and costs fall. More IoT-enabled foodservice equipment will be offered allowing restaurant operators to upload real time usage data and instantly download LTO recipe changes to all locations.
Additionally, more automated HACCP compliance monitoring — along with improved uptime and lower maintenance costs — can provide savings to operators. Equipment usage data can also be analyzed to improve kitchen operational efficiencies and food quality.
What trends do you have your eye on for coming year? The Antunes team would love to work with you to find equipment solutions to address those trends. Connect with us via this form to start the conversation. We want to help you succeed in 2020!