Restaurants, bars and cafes: is it time you went wireless?

January 24, 2015

For many bars, restaurants and businesses in the hospitality sector, staying ahead in what is often an over-saturated market can seem difficult. But far from investing in a drastic rebrand or another costly marketing campaign, adapting your payment systems may offer a more cost-effective way of distinguishing your service.
With more of us demanding a quicker, more efficient and technology-driven service from bars and restaurants, making the move from a fixed POS terminal to a wireless card machine can transform the way your business interacts with customers.
Far from just an optional extra, wireless card terminals are quickly becoming a vital essential for hospitality businesses. Fail to take the importance of these changing consumer tastes seriously however and your business could be left in the cold.

Wireless terminals – what’s the big deal?

In today’s post-recession United Kingdom, consumers have become savvier, more aware and more demanding than ever before. And in a sector as fiercely competitive as hospitality, understanding and catering to those needs has never been more important.
With leading accountancy firm BDO International recently reporting how restaurant and pub like-for-likes have demonstrated steady growth over the past 12 months, the public’s appetite for hospitality is showing no signs of relenting.
But despite many traditional urban restaurants and cafes looking to maximise this opportunity by serving drinks long into the evening, many are failing to adapt enough elements of their business to cater for this. With Deloitte recently underlining how transactions ‘are becoming simpler, seamless and more intuitive’, it’s important that bars and restaurants are reflecting this in their service offering.

Giving your customers what they want

Adding a slicker payment service to your restaurant or bar might not transform the balance sheet of your business. But with the importance of features such as geo-reviews to consumer choice, going that extra mile to deliver great customer service can help fight off customer churn and increase your bar/restaurant’s reputation.
It’s also important to recognise the growing demand for quicker service in the western world. Just over half of respondents to a landmark Technomic study on consumer-facing technology noted how they expect restaurants to start offering newer tech – principally of it means their payment process speed will increase.
But perhaps most important, is the sheer volume of credit and debit card transactions that the sector is now undertaking. Card spending growth is still showing no signs of slowing down, with restaurant spending hitting the highest level for any period during the last 12 months in March of this year with £1.8billion spent – a £400million increase on the year previous[4]. Adding a wireless terminal will only increase your company’s propensity to accept these payments.
Although the majority of businesses in this sector will already offer a fixed card processing terminal, it’s these changing consumer tastes which ensure wireless technology will soon form a solid part of customer expectations.

A must-have for the hospitality industry

Whether you’re looking to offer late-night drinks to your restaurant’s résumé, or even an al-fresco dining area to your existing bar, wireless machines help you add another layer of outstanding customer service.
Giving staff the opportunity to directly charge consumers at their table or terrace helps allow both your business and its customers another layer of flexibility. In an ever-changing hospitality environment, that extra mobility can give your restaurant that extra something over its competitors.
Don’t forget, Chip & PIN Solutions are of the UK’s leading providers of wireless credit card machines – click here to discover how we can help your bar or restaurant today.