Our Self Service Technology Blog

Standalone self-service food kiosks are changing the restaurant industry, improving operations and impacting customers’ purchasing habits. Just ask McDonald’s. The fast-food giant has started adding standalone self-service kiosks to its restaurants – a lot of them, in fact. The company says it will add 1,000 every quarter for the next two to three years. Business Insider reports that most of the 14,000 McDonald’s locations in the U.S., will have ordering kiosks by 2020.

Food & Beverage self-service kiosks are a big part of the $717 million kiosk market

Beverage self-service kiosks account for 14 percent, and food self-service kiosks account for 16 percent of the overall market – and those number are growing.

That’s for good reason: Self-service kiosks in restaurants can increase revenue, reduce customer wait times, process orders quicker, and ensure ordering consistency. And, of course, a kiosk never, ever forgets to upsell and promote.

In some cases, kiosks can reduce customer friction: When one liquor store replaced clerks with self-service technology, market share of items (such as wines) with difficult-to-pronounce names increased 8.4%. Customers could avoid feeling unsure of themselves and embarrassed when trying to correctly pronounce Comte Vogue Musigny Vielles Vignes (and 2012 study found that people will pay more for wines they can’t pronounce).

People also seem to spend more at self-service kiosks

Merchant Max Girl Food BeverageAccording to the same article in the Harvard Business Review, about 10 years ago, a study of McDonald’s kiosks in use at that time revealed average check totals increased by $1 when customers used kiosks – at the time a whopping 30 percent! Cinemark’s self-service kiosks increased per person concession spending for 32 fiscal quarters in a row.

While it may seem like self-service technology would spell doom for human workers, that isn’t the case. Having the technology handle certain tasks allows restaurants to focus on other things such as back of the house operations and customer service. Customers can enjoy better quality and shorter wait times. And the data gained with the technology can help further improve operations overall.

Beyond fast-food ordering, there are other ways self-service technology can be used in the food and beverage industry:

  • Payment transaction processing
  • Corporate cafes and lunchrooms
  • Cafeteria self-serve ordering
  • Table reservations & queuing
  • Menu and specials promotion
  • Vending machines
  • Beverage dispensers

The uses are limited only by the imagination.

Before you get started, however, Harvard Business School Assistant Professor Ryan Buell told HBR that there are several things to consider when introducing self-service technology:

  • The customers are taking on a greater share of the work, so the design of the technology is critical to providing an easy and seamless customer experience.
  • Customers must know what’s expected of them – and they must be capable of doing it
  • Customers have to understand the value of their efforts to make them want to engage with the technology.

Meeting challenges and third-party integration is no problem for Advanced Kiosks

Advanced Kiosks offers a wide array of custom kiosk software packages with built-in functionality to help our customers meet their self-service needs. With a development staff in-house, we have the capability to integrate with third party food & beverage software vendors and customize both the kiosk hardware and kiosk management software (Zamok) to meet customer needs and ensure the final product is user-friendly. Not many kiosk manufacturers can boast about having an in-house engineering staff, but we believe it’s necessary to be able to provide complete self service solutions for our customers.

American-Made and Backed by Our Guarantee

American MadeWith over 16 years in the industry, Advanced Kiosks has provided thousands of self-service kiosk solutions spanning dozens of industries, making the company a leader in the field worldwide. While we serve a global market, we’re proud to say our business is a local one: our hardware and software is designed and engineered in-house, right here in New Hampshire.

Our kiosks are all American-made by local workers using commercial grade hardware. We never compromise on quality. Whether a tribute kiosk or a food/beverage kiosk, we test our products thoroughly and we will never ship an order to you until everything passes a rigorous evaluation.

We back everything we sell with a 3-year warranty. That’s unmatched in the industry. The warranty covers not just the metal housing, but every component within your computer kiosk. And we offer world class support because our name is on the product you buy and that’s our promise. We believe that the customer experience doesn’t end after the sale but continues for the life of your product.

Advanced Kiosks has built a strong reputation in the industry because of the quality of our products. And our reputation in the marketplace continues to grow as more and more businesses find that our products offer the quality they want with the value and reliability they need. We call it the Advanced Kiosks Advantage.

Interested in entering the growing food and beverage self-service kiosk trend? Contact us today! We’re happy to answer your kiosk hardware and software questions and to help get you up and running as soon as possible!


Written by Tami Brouillette, contributing author

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