While the on-demand business model was once associated with a small number of large companies like Uber and Airbnb, it’s now a nearly $60 billion market that’s experiencing significant growth every year. As consumers adjust to the convenience and ease-of-use associated with on-demand mobile applications, it’s clear that companies in every industry will need to adapt.
Mobile ordering is already nearing $40 billion itself, allowing restaurants to serve a greater number of customers as efficiently as possible. Yet while many companies have embraced the on-demand model and made it part of their practices, a number of major fast-food chains continue to lag behind the rest of the restaurant industry. Developing iOS apps or Android apps will help these chains stay competitive.
As fast food begins to incorporate on-demand applications, it can learn from the ways these have been implemented in more traditional restaurant settings. With close to two-thirds of fast-casual customers planning to order online this year, it’s clear that fast food needs to adopt the on-demand model if it wants to continue offering customers the most convenient option.
Easily Navigable Menus
If you have experienced ordering online, you’ve likely dealt with restaurants that provide long or unclear menus, making it difficult to order. User experience is a vital component of what makes on-demand applications so popular, and potential customers will likely be turned off by the inconvenience alone.
The best way to avoid this obstacle is by separating each section of the menu, such as drinks, entrées, and desserts, into its own drop-down menu. Rather than displaying everything at once and forcing users to scroll through endless items, this makes it easy for them to find what they’re looking for.
Bring them Back with Rewards
Another common element associated with the modern restaurant business is a strong emphasis on loyalty programs and other rewards. These act to entice customers to come back with unique discounts and deals. Building brand loyalty is a great way to turn one-time customers into regulars.
Companies like Starbucks and Dominos have capitalized on this potential by providing rewards directly through their proprietary applications, making it easy for customers to see when their next reward will be available and encouraging them to continue making purchases.
A focus on convenience and simplicity is becoming more and more important in all areas of the market, especially as millennial audiences become a larger percentage of the consumer population. Customers want to feel that they are being given the best possible experience for their money, and if you don’t provide that experience, another brand will.
Cultivating brand loyalty among your customers will help you build a reliable source of revenue, and rewards programs are a great way to increase sales in the restaurant business (and other industries). Following these guidelines will help you craft an on-demand app experience that brings in new customers and encourages existing ones to come back.
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