Mobile order ahead isn’t just about convenience. It’s about creating a comprehensive customer experience that encourages brand engagement, loyalty, and repeat business. In other words, revenue!
But QSRs have their work cut out for them these days. Digital outreach strategies are making things more competitive, with more businesses vying for a limited amount of market share. If QSRs want to compete, they need to know which strategies contribute the most to customer engagement—and how to promote those strategies to their customers.
1. Fast Pickup In-Store
The biggest thing Square customers love about PoppinPay (a web and mobile order ahead solution integrated into Square’s point of sale system) is just that—ordering remotely and saving themselves the hassle of lengthy in-store pickups. Square’s in-store pickup features make this a breeze.
Merchants can accept web orders online or via the mobile app (powered by PoppinPay) prep them for pickup, and make customizations the customer needs. This allows for an omnichannel experience for the customer.
Compare this flexibility with other methods of ordering (such as phone or waiting in line) and the benefits are obvious. Communication is quick on both sides, taking place entirely through the app. It’s a great system where both the customers and the QSR have visibility, and control, in the ordering process.
2. Skip The Line
With all the above in mind, let’s point out another key benefit of mobile order ahead: Skipping the line!
From a customer’s standpoint, this is probably one of the biggest selling points of mobile order ahead. Nobody enjoys waiting in line for service, particularly when they have other places to be. And even the very presence of a line can be a determining factor in whether they’ll stop in. (For example, if they have only a few minutes to grab a quick coffee before work.) In situations like these, mobile order ahead can be a significant driver of revenue.
From the QSR’s standpoint, mobile order ahead is a type of line busting strategy. Lines might indicate that business is good, but their presence is problematic when customers expect the quick-service restaurant’s service to be, well, quick.
3. Ability to Re-order Favorites
QSRs have a unique advantage in eCommerce retail: customer re-ordering. Generally, customers who leverage mobile order ahead, app-based purchasing, and other tools like these have visited the QSR a few times and have a feel for what they like. And unlike other types of eCommerce (like retail), these consumers are likely to order the same things again and again. And if they do, you can bet that they love the ability to re-select their favorite options from their order history.
And the benefits don’t stop at convenience. For some customers, the option to re-select their favorite choices may even result in higher sales. Research into UX testing shows a clear correlation between complexity in the checkout process and willingness to go through with the order. In other words, the more steps they have to go through, the less likely it is that they’ll buy. Giving them the option to re-order their favorites is a simple step that any QSR can take to push the value of their mobile order ahead strategy.
4. Loyalty Programs
Loyalty programs work. There’s no getting around it. Customers love earning rewards for purchases they were going to make anyway, and the right incentives can encourage regular purchasing from a brand.
According to research, over 90% of customers claim to be equally or more loyal to their preferred brands than they were a year ago. And in terms of the biggest drivers of loyalty, two aspects came out on top: having a great product (55%), and offering great deals (25%). And fortunately, Square’s Loyalty program makes this process easy.
QSRs can tap into Square’s system to track loyalty status for each customer, including their personal details, point aggregation, history of purchases, and more. The customers love it, to be sure—but its real value (from the QSR perspective, at least) comes from the data it provides. It’s a win-win. Square will be integrating loyalty into their mobile API later this year.
5. Saving Payment Details
Given that mobile order ahead is all about the customer experience, it makes sense that customers love the choices to save their payment details in-app. It’s the ultimate convenience; rather than needing to fumble through their purses and wallets for every purchase, all it takes is a couple clicks to complete a transaction.
And while this might seem like a double-edged sword in today’s climate of data security, it turns out that many consumers aren’t deterred: Two out of every three online shoppers have their card information saved on at least one site, and 10% claim to always save their card info online, no matter where they are. Clearly, consumers have no problem handing their info over to trusted brands, and the brands that earn this trust stand to benefit more from the relationship in the long-term.
Planning for Mobile Order Ahead
Customers love the simplicity and features of Square’s POS. But the brands behind Square’s system are the chief drivers of the customer experience, and these companies shouldn’t be satisfied with simply meeting their customers’ expectations. They need to go beyond the basic and explore new solutions that encourage participation with the enterprise. And in terms of mobile app-based solutions, there’s no better option than mobile order ahead. Reach out today to talk to PoppinPay about getting your web and mobile order ahead solution for your business!