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Bots serving up at Restaurants!

Chatbot technologies are improving how customers experience dining (and growing revenue)

· chatbot,AI,RPA,restaurant,Food and beverage

Conversational agents and Artificial Intelligence (AI) are rooting themselves into many industries and changing the way that customers and staff interact with businesses. Notably due to the productivity increases within industries and departments, the adoption into widening applications are now a reality and that's probably what your customers are now expecting.

But what about the use of Chatbots in Restaurants? Of course, they are still in the infancy stages of gaining the ability to clear tables or refill empty drink glasses, but much can be looked into how Chatbots aid restaurant businesses to improve staff productivity and efficiency.

Non-human interactions have since become standard in everyday customer activities, the technology has landed and is in the midst of expanding. Food outlets are no exception, with the millennial generation more likely to prefer digital communication over a telephone call, these technologies in food outlets will soon be the expectations.

Starting small...

Using Bots complimenting your service staff seems to be quite a new concept in restaurants, and to many restaurants deploying a Best in Class Bot may erode margins significantly. Hence, core to our envisioned future at Su-Ette, our intent is to allow restaurants to be able to quickly build and deploy Bot through our subscription-based Bot platform. All without the hefty cost of upfront development. Many restaurants owners ask: " How much to get my own Bot?" It's a simple $99/Month reply. Importantly, we don't want limit features, messages, platforms to integrate with our subscribers, hence our clients attain feature packed capabilities to not only engage in customer queries but also to embark on the era of mobile messaging marketing, which comes standard to all our subscribers.

It's really that simple to start deploying your digital workforce, and the sky's the limit in terms of creativity of humans.

A Client of ours kept getting hundreds of questions per day from their customers asking about the WiFi Password and this really disrupts their service staff. All their tables come with their Bot's QR code and voila! The bots handle the customer's queries without disruption to their operations.

“Customers prefer mobile messaging as a means of communication and interaction”​

Charles Golvin, Research Director, Gartner (Source: Gartner)

Besides gaining efficiency in operations, what this client got is the "Stickiness" to get their customers to return. Because of having a chat relationship with their bots, the owners were able to deliver marketing campaigns and broadcast which had high success in getting returning customers.

Their chatbot is not just a faster experience for the customer, it also benefits your in-house team. Busy waiters and waitresses will no longer have to balance phone calls with all of those trays full of food and drink.

The ease of access to our subscription chatbots also lowers the barrier to entry. Brands are no longer just on the high street. They’re a part of our everyday lives on social media, too.

Thinking Big...

Seeing the success of how our subscription bots are serving their customers, that's where the exploration of moving beyond just conversations and how can our Bots move into transactional work for their restaurant. (Due to our strict NDA with them, we won't openly discuss the problem we are trying to solve for them with our Bot technology).

What we have learned from this project was the possibilities that is now open when we continuously listen to their "Pain Points" to scale the Bot solution that is aligned more closely to resolving problems, not delivering headaches.  

Our learnings...

From what we have seen and partnered for this client, there were multiple benefits a Chatbot brings to their productivity:

1.) Ease of access - Used to be many scenarios of "waiting on hold" for their customers who called in. Leading to frustrations and drop off by callers. Now traffic is driven to their Chatbot to handle queries and get their staff to focus on what matters.

2.) Freeing their staff for a better experience - Their staff now shifts their attention to giving their patrons a fantastic dining experience without the distractions (Of asking for the WiFi password...)

3.) Order assistance - Due to the turnover of their causal (part-time) staff, the knowledge of their food menu was not properly trained, leading to a poor inclination of wrong food suggestions. The Head Chef was part of curating the bot programming and he was able to curate food recommendations for their customers. We are training the bot to do cross-selling of their wine selections at the moment (^.^)

4.) Integrated marketing through Bots - Special promotions, new menu items, and branding all wrapped into one through their bots. Campaigns and broadcast to their customers were run through our platform and the engagement analytics are at the owner's fingertips. Giving them a greater ability to plan for their marketing efforts. Through them, we also learn about their needs to monitor URL link performance, which we have developed it as a standard feature on our subscription Bots.

Whether the usage of Chatbots was driven but additional conversations due to novelty or from conversations that would have normally dialed in via phone, it does go to show that the demand and preference are there. And Chatbots are going to be part of our new Customer Experience (CX).




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