Tech integration is key for hospitality beyond the pandemic

Chief commercial officer Josh Franklin explains how integration will continue to assist the hospitality industry beyond the pandemic. This interview was originally written and published by QSR Media.

The food delivery boom, furthered by the pandemic, resulted in a multitude of platforms of apps that customers can use to get their orders.

Cloud platform Doshii looks to help chains focus on kitchen efficiency by syncing such information platforms and apps into partnered POS systems. This, according to them, results in operational efficiency, reducing labour cost involved with rekeying orders, and minimising mistakes that lead to product wastage and unhappy customers.

Speaking to QSR Media, chief commercial Officer Josh Franklin explained how integration will continue to assist the hospitality industry beyond the pandemic.

QSR Media: The pandemic delivery boom made a case for businesses to streamline how they handle third-party ordering apps. How are chains utilising the synced insights and data from Doshii?

Franklin: With Doshii, chains are able to clearly understand which channels are driving the most revenue and profitability to them, for example in-venue ordering habits versus pick-up or kiosk and device orders. They can then optimise those channels’ offerings.

They can also look at less successful channels and assess how their results can be improved. They can see what is selling best and when, and look at modifying the menu accordingly or instigating other sales and promotional activity. Doshii also provides unique and tailored insights for each store. This means that menus and channels can be optimised, to ensure sales are being maximised for each location.

Doshii has a full menu management system to allow operators to manage their menus from a central platform. All styles of operator will benefit from less time managing menus across multiple apps. They’ll also be able to avoid costs incurred through rekeying orders into the POS, and removes human error associated with missed or incorrectly rekeyed orders. Ultimately it will improve revenue, reduce operational costs and increase efficiency.

What has the delivery data been telling you about QSR customers?

Our experiences from the past 12 months have shown that ordering from apps – in venue, at home or on the road – is surging; customers spend up to 30 per cent more when they order from their devices.

Another trend we’ve seen emerge is that once consumers have ordered from their device the first time, they are far more likely to want to do it again.

Some areas of the Australian hospitality industry, including on-site dining, were badly hit during the pandemic. As a result, we’ve seen venues looking for unique ways to offer delivery, pick-up and app-based ordering to attract and retain customers.

Food delivery services thrived through the lockdown. There was a massive demand from customers wanting to pay for their meals with credit cards or some form of mobile or contactless payment. We also found customers preferred to order from a digital menu on their phones, even if they chose to collect the order themselves. This was, in part, due to adhering to COVID-safe rules, but this type of mobile ordering and payment preference hasn’t changed, even with the easing of restrictions.

What’s your take on what’s now happening in the industry? Any predictions on where it will go?

As restrictions ease considerably across Australia, we’ll continue to see a strong demand for food delivery services among consumers. We believe that in-venue digital ordering, while in its infancy here in Australia, will be a trend that will continue to gain popularity over time.

We’ll also see new apps in the marketplace that will harness artificial intelligence capabilities, making them more intuitive. They’ll offer consumers greater customisation and preferences in their choice of menu options and ‘healthy’ food items.

How has take-up differed between chain stores and smaller independent businesses?

It’s been rewarding to see the benefits for both styles of business. Many of the smaller, independent outlets and businesses have needed Doshii simply to be able to operate efficiently and to ‘tech up’. We’ve helped hamburger stores, for example, that may have previously been predominantly cash businesses with no delivery partners be able to quickly open up these new channels, streamline their business, and keep them focussed on making and serving good food.

We’ve helped franchised stores tap into their unique markets in a way that wasn’t previously possible. While they have the advantage of having processes and procedures in place, they’ve managed to save money, time and effort with our data insights that lead to less wastage and the ability to maximise and tailor their offering across their different channels. Integration means running business smarter and gives operators the opportunity to capitalise on accurate and insightful data.

What does this mean for consumers?

Happier customers lead to a more vibrant hospitality industry. We think giving customers more of what they want, streamlining the ordering process and minimising any opportunity for order errors will provide a more fulfilling experience all ‘round. In turn that will lead to return business and glowing reviews and ratings for the venue operator. It’s a win-win for everyone involved.

End.

Hospitality can bank on Doshii success

Doshii is helping hospitality venues revolutionise their operating systems is generating big interest of its own after being added to the Commonwealth Bank’s venture scaling business ,x15ventures,.

As the fifth venture to join the x15 stable, Doshii is a unique middleware cloud platform for the hospitality sector, helping thousands of venues cut through the app chaos and blitz the surge in mobile ordering brought about by the coronavirus pandemic.

Proud partner, Commonwealth Bank
Proud partner, Commonwealth Bank

Designed specifically for the hospitality industry, Doshii integrates venues’ multitude of food ordering, business management, data and customer loyalty program apps and point of sale (POS) functions into a single system.

Doshii CEO Justin O’Donnell explained that the ‘one-stop-shop’ seamlessly syncs all the information and apps required to efficiently run, oversee and grow restaurant, café and bar businesses.

“During last year’s COVID-19 restrictions there was much commentary about people having Zoom meeting overload, but ask anyone who works in hospitality and they’ll tell you that app overload is an ongoing headache,” O’Donnell said.

“Doshii allows you to access all the apps you need from your POS terminal, with real-time updating, so you always have the information you need without messing around with a mishmash of different systems.

“The feedback from our clients is Doshii reduces labour, improves efficiency and accuracy, and allows them to focus on what they’re actually good at – be it making and serving burgers or mixing cocktails – without distraction or delay.

“Customer service and satisfaction is improved, which generates return business and glowing reviews and ratings.”

 

Justin O’Donnell
Doshii CEO, Justin O’Donnell

x15ventures Managing Director, Toby Norton-Smith, said Doshii was an exciting digital platform with a strong business proposition backed by leading technology.

“When we launched x15ventures last year, our mission was to bring new solutions to market that empower customers as never before and Doshii allows us to do just that. 

“Doshii will allow hospitality businesses to streamline and digitise multiple, cumbersome tasks that have, for many of our customers, been done manually until now,” Mr Norton-Smith said.

Mr O’Donnell said COVID-19 lockdown saw an astronomical 220% spike in food ordering and delivery throughout Australia, with 95% of customers paying via credit card or another form of mobile payment.

“As restrictions have eased, uptake of in-venue digital ordering and delivery continues to rise; Doshii allows businesses to harness this opportunity by allowing them to focus on what they do best – deliver great food, drink and service to all their customers,” he said.

Mr O’Donnell said being chosen by the Commonwealth Bank to be its fifth business acquisition under its venture scaling business was a huge endorsement of Doshii’s offering to the hospitality and small business industry.

“It’s great validation to the industry that we have gained the faith and financial backing of Australia’s leading bank, which sees Doshii as the market leader in this space to help streamline, digitise and improve hospitality businesses.” 

DQ and Doshii help Billboard bounce back after lockdown

 

Billboards Saturdays

Victoria had just announced it was coming out of lockdown and every restaurant and bar was working out how to open back up, stay covid-safe and give a good experience to returning customers. 

For Melbourne icon Billboard, this suddenly meant a very different type of operation with only table service allowed, not to mention significant limits on capacity. 

Now for non Melbourne based readers, Billboard is a unique nightclub – a venue surrounded on three sides by bars – so moving to table service was always going to be a big shift. 

But, with the help of DQ, the contactless ordering app that lets guests browse menus, order & then pay instantly at their table, Billboard adapted to the ‘new normal’ quickly. In fact, DQ was the only ordering mechanism for Billboard until standard service was permitted to resume across Victorian venues. 

However, with multiple orders coming through every minute it was essential for Billboard to be able to consolidate all records directly into their connected POS, something made possible with Doshii. Now, leveraging the Doshii API, the Billboard team could amend pricing and menu items on the fly whilst keeping track of every order via the DQ app.

“In those first few weeks after lockdown the last thing we wanted to worry about was all the complexity that can come with managing new tech and systems, but Doshii and DQ together made it all a breeze. Not having to rekey orders from the app into our POS system, Impos, saved us crucial time and labour costs in those early days especially, and it ensured perfect record keeping whilst we focused on getting our venue up and running, serving customers and kicking goals,” said Nev from Billboards. 

Any venue that leverages the DQ app is instantly able to extend its service capabilities and improve labour productivity. With the Doshii connection, orders are seamlessly delivered to a connected POS and menu items are synchronised in real-time, reducing double handling and error.

“Our turnaround time was a max of two minutes for every order – that just wouldn’t have been made possible without Doshii and DQ for us,” added Nev.

If you’d like to talk to the Doshii team about connecting DQ for your venue, get in touch today, or reach out to us at hello@doshii.io.

Optimising delivery operations for restaurants

It’s no secret that online delivery operations for restaurants have been high on the hospo agenda this year. Restrictions and the proliferation of ordering apps in 2020 has accelerated customer adoption and demand has been met with a wealth of choice.

This has obviously become a hugely important revenue stream for hospitality in trying times, growing significant amounts this year with revenue growth projected to continue at 12.1%* into 2021. 

But revenue growth for the industry doesn’t always translate to profits and margins for merchants. Whilst lots of restaurants have jumped onto delivery platforms to open up a new revenue stream, there’s still a lot of cash left on the table if operations aren’t optimised and it can quickly become overwhelming for owners. 

However, having seen some awesome Doshii clients really get to grips with online ordering and delivery we’ve been able to identify some of the best tactics for keeping things simple, streamlined and profitable. Here’s a few of our favourites.

Get to know your timings

Timing is everything in this game. Not only do you need to have a clear gage on how long it takes to prepare an order, but also how long it will typically take to deliver. This second component is essential because there’s no point having an item on the menu if the delivery time-frame will be a hindrance to the quality of the dish. Wherever the customer is, at home or in a venue, you want them to taste the best of your restaurant so make sure you set your delivery radius smartly. 

Set up your kitchen for success

It might sound simple, but with most kitchens being designed and set up for serving in-venue customers it’s worth taking that principle and applying it to delivery operations – i.e. redesign part of your kitchen set up and workflow to support this new line of business. Make sure your prep, packaging and dispatch is optimised and consider hiring specific team members for delivery only. What can feel like an investment now will likely translate to long-term efficiency gains.

Data led menu optimisation

With everything being digital, make sure you can easily track the trends. Being able to analyse both what your customers are ordering and when they are ordering it across multiple ordering apps can be a huge advantage for menu optimisation and stock logistics. Apps like TabSquare can even personalise menus to customer preferences. This analysis can take time but when you use an integration like Doshii you can ensure that all the key data can be centralised into one dashboard via your PoS. This simple connection can save you hours of analysis paralysis meaning you can make better strategic decisions, and faster, when it comes to your restaurant delivery operations… 

Delivery route optimisation

Lastly, make sure you’ve considered whether you’re going to leverage the big power app’s delivery operations or build your own last-mile delivery team. Doshii has some incredible apps like Yello and iHound in the Doshii app marketplace that can help you assign orders and manage a fleet of drivers. Through the Doshii integration, all of the critical data can again be centralised, meaning you can optimise over time.

Ultimately, as a restaurant owner, you’ve got to work out what’s best for you and your business, but online ordering and delivery isn’t going away, so focusing on ways to optimise is critical to driving better profits.

If you want to chat to the Doshii team about the right delivery operations strategy and solutions for your restaurant, reach out to us at hello@doshii.io.

Hospitality’s coronavirus fight back means mastering tech

This article first appeared on QSR Media.

There are years where it feels like only weeks of change takes place, and then there are weeks when it feels like years of change take place. The latter seems to aptly sum up the state of play in the hospitality industry as whole right now.

No doubt many of us are mourning huge losses and will do for some time to come, but the green shoots of a new future I have seen so far have been encouraging. Human instinct is millenia old, especially our instinct to provide hospitality to others, and the creative ways businesses have adapted to do just that during coronavirus-plagued times is worth celebrating.

Digital transformation drives new ways to provide hospitality

Specifically, the way in which ecommerce and digital operations have been embraced or sharpened has been fascinating. The sense I get is that merchants will not be thwarted when it comes to providing hospitality and staying connected to patrons wherever they are.

Take a typical mid-market QSR player right now, say with 10 to 20 venues across each major city. It’s highly likely that they now have a suite of ordering and delivery apps they’re using to reach customers beyond the one or two major global players we’ve grown accustomed to over the past couple of years. They’re also probably investing in their own ordering and ecommerce solutions, especially if they’ve got a strong brand, to sell anything from their usual menu to meal-kits and merchandise.

And as for customer loyalty programs, these have no doubt become more sophisticated as a result, alongside these new ways to transact overall.

Now for most QSR players this isn’t really new, but it is still do or die, especially if they want to come out of 2020’s constrained economy with a chance of kicking on in 2021. In particular, for large players this is a journey they’ve been on for some time yet still have a lot of work to do to overcome the legacy systems already in place. At least medium and smaller players can be more agile and make the tech changes required to thrive quicker.

Essentially, embracing digital and new tech is about opening up new revenue streams, which also leads to more data and insight on customers wherever they’re transacting with your business, leading to more opportunities to adapt and grow.

The whole is greater than the sum of its parts

Whilst this digital transformation has been accelerated due to COVID-19, it was always coming. And it’s clear right now that the winning food and beverage businesses are the ones who are (or have been) investing wisely in digital operations, marketing and tech & apps because it results in more choices for consumers, and diversified incomes for the venue.

Clearly, in a post-COVID world people will still want food on a plate in a bustling restaurant, surrounded by friends. Some things will never change. But other things might, especially if it grants more choice to consumers. Being able to offer that choice in a sustainable way is critical – it takes more than just piecing together some apps, venues need everything integrated so the tech whole can become greater than the sum of its parts.

For example, whilst a presence across more ordering apps means more opportunity, it also means more work for the restaurant. Don’t get me wrong, there’s a lot of digital opportunities out there for everyone, even if you haven’t started the journey yet, but if you don’t master the tech it can get out of control. I’m sure any restaurant team that’s spent a heap of time re-keying digital orders from multiple apps into a POS or updating menu items across multiple apps will testify to that, and that’s not even mentioning their own digital ordering and ecommerce.

We’ve all read reports recently across the industry of big increases in digital commerce for cafes and restaurants. Some suburban cafes I’ve spoken to are reporting that up to 80% of their business is now coming in via apps! Whilst this increase paints an exciting future, there’s no doubt plenty of operators out there won’t have the tech stack required to increase their digital revenue without impacting their operational costs though.

For example, just removing the manual re-keying of orders from apps to POS with a tech solution can reportedly save a busy restaurant upwards of $20,000 a year in labour.

If there’s one thing we’ve all been taught during coronavirus, it’s that having all your eggs in one basket isn’t a good idea, so new digitally enabled revenue streams are here to stay and likely to grow. But for this creative and digitally led coronavirus fight back to drive sustainable growth across the industry into the future, QSRs of all shapes and sizes need to make sure they have the right tools in place to simplify the technology ecosystem that surrounds them.

Once the tech is mastered, it’s back to the simple stuff, the human instinct, the bread and butter: providing awesome hospitality experiences to consumers, wherever they are.

Five tips for setting up a Dark Kitchen

The strange idea of restaurants serving hundreds of meals without tables, chairs or waiters would have been quite a bizarre concept to many of us just a year ago. 

Those in the know will have seen this trend coming as a new development in the future of food for some time, but for any Australian who has suffered long periods of social lockdown in 2020 (that’s certainly you Victorians) and turned to the many ordering apps to get a taste of the restaurants they’ve missed so dearly, the idea will now make sense: dark kitchens.

A ‘dark kitchen’ is a restaurant that only exists digitally, creating meals exclusively for the booming online delivery market. 

For merchants the opportunity with ‘dark kitchens’ is to unlock a new revenue stream, optimise a menu specifically for delivery and ultimately meet customers with new food products in interesting ways via a range of online delivery channels.

Here’s five tips from the Doshii team for setting up a Dark Kitchen: 

1. Location, location, location

One of the biggest attractions of a dark restaurant is that you don’t actually need to rent an expensive building in a premium location. Your location isn’t what’s going to attract customers, just your menu, so choose somewhere that gives you a good reach but ultimately allows you to focus on getting the product right. 

2. Optimise for delivery

Not all great food is delivered equally but this is your chance to create a menu that will travel well. Think about items that can withstand a journey on the back of a motorbike and look into optimised packaging that can keep your tasty deliveries kitchen fresh for as long as possible – ultimately this will be what keeps customers coming back. 

Equally, whether you’re leveraging an ordering app with it’s own delivery service like Deliveroo or creating your own last mile delivery strategy using solutions like Drive Yello, it’s critical that you step through the what and the why to make sure it works for your business. Optimised routes built from data and insights can make a huge difference to margins for example.

3. Cut out manual processes

If you’re running a dark kitchen you want to be operating at maximum velocity and given all of your orders are coming through digitally you want to make sure you have a technology stack that eradicated any manual processes. For example, ensuring orders from multiple apps go straight into the one PoS system and print through the same printer in the kitchen. Doshii can help with this, ensuring your not wasting time manually rekeying orders into a PoS or running reconciliations on all orders and revenue at the end of the month.

4. Test & learn from the data

The best ordering apps have one huge advantage – data. Apps like Deliveroo know the latest diner trends and can be ready to pounce with offerings diners didn’t even know they wanted yet. But so can you when running a dark restaurant. Make sure all of the apps you use are seamlessly connected to your PoS, putting all the data you have into one place ready to be used to drive menu optimisations. Even simple things like knowing when you’re more likely to sell out of certain dishes as a trend can help you ensure you don’t leave any dollars on the table.

5. Invest in marketing

Now, with no face to face interactions this might seem counterintuitive, especially when your brand only really shows up in an ordering app, but good brands drive revenue. Think about smart, targeted marketing campaigns you can run, leveraging the diner data you have. Loyalty programs are also great at driving repeat purchases and if you have the right apps to help you manage diner data and loyalty comms you can make sure all of your focus stays firmly on the product.

Dark kitchens, even as hospitality opens up again, are here to stay as online food ordering continues it’s rapid surge. If you want to chat to the Doshii team about the right digital strategy and solution for your dark kitchen venture, reach out to us at hello@doshii.io.

Doshii welcomes venues with Square

Square for restaurants POS Doshii API

Doshii is excited to welcome Square to its ecosystem of connected Point of Sale (POS) systems across Australia. The connection enables any venue with Square POS to connect to the growing range of e-commerce applications available via Doshii App Marketplace to help operate and run their digital business.

Helping more venues connect

Doshii CEO and Founder, Sean O’Meara explains, “With the current COVID-19 environment venues are having to adapt and connect specifically with a range of ordering Applications (Apps) to run and drive digital sales to their business. Directly from Square POS, sellers can enable Doshii and gain access to the growing list of ordering and delivery Apps”

Connect today, Connect for FREE.

As part of the partnership, venues can access Doshii for free for the next six months (until October this year) and connect multiple Apps directly to their venues’ POS. Doshii connects to a range of ordering Applications such as Deliveroo, Mr Yum, OrderUp!, Mobi2Go, me&u , FROLO and WebPOS, through to reservation platforms including Resy and OpenTable.

Doshii GM, Greg Williams explains “Our goal is simple – we want to provide venues with the one platform to manage and maintain all of their digital e-commerce applications to reduce labour costs and drive revenue in a sustainable manner”

Venues can get connected immediately today.

More ordering & delivery options for Australian sellers

A number of venues have signed up to Doshii directly from their Square POS with Todd Gawn, owner of The Bearded Jaffle in Ascot Vale providing some insights:

“I wish all our Apps were on Doshii connected to our Square POS. No more copying over orders from multiple different tablets to our POS means there’s no room for error, orders automatically appear on the POS – instantly! As soon as we view the order it prints to the printers – 100’s of orders means lots of time re-entering orders, from multiple tablets. We are saving 2 minutes on each order coming through, freeing up lots of time and making service flow so much better!”

I wish all our Apps were on Doshii connected to our Square POS

Bearded Jaffle use Doshii to connect Square
Bearded Jaffle use Doshii to connect Square

Doshii essentially removed an entire process for us on every order – meaning we can focus on service and speed up our preparation time. It’s only the first few days, but we couldn’t be happier with Doshii if we tried!”

More resources & support

Square has announced support for businesses during this time, including waiving software subscription fees and offering additional business assistance through their dedicated resource hub.

It’s Doshii’s view that on the other side of COVID-19, merchants and their customers’ willingness to adopt in-venue and out-of-venue digital technology will sky rocket. The Square and Doshii connector, opens the door for even more Australian venues to quickly and easily find, evaluate and manage connected Ordering App solutions for both out-of-venue and in-venue (when it starts again) ordering.

More ordering & delivery options for Australian sellers

“We are excited to partner with Doshii to provide Square sellers with additional options for ordering and delivery, especially during this time,” said Square Australia’s Business Development Lead Colin Birney. “This is an integration we know our hospitality businesses will appreciate, enabling them to use one simple system for all their ordering and payment needs, eliminating the hassle of juggling multiple apps and potentially missing sales.”

Venues using Square POS and want to connect with Doshii can find “Doshii” in the Square marketplace , or simply select ‘Square’ when getting started via our website.

For assistance, get in touch with Doshii directly at support@doshii.io


FAQ

How do I activate Doshii with Square?

What is the cost?

  • As of April, Doshii is waiving all Standard and Premium subscription fees to assist venues digitising during COVID-19, until October 2020.
  • Doshii has a Free plan offering for venues to connect one App for free on its basic plan. Doshii also offers more advanced, Premium and Enterprise starting from $49.90 per location per month. See: doshii.io/pricing
  • Square has simple pricing, charging one flat fee for transactions, with no long term contracts. Square also offers a 30 day free trial for their dedicated Restaurants POS software to help businesses get started.

What’s the catch?

  • There’s no catch – Doshii may charge Apps a nominal amount to connect to specific locations.

What’s the benefit to me?

  • Using Doshii’s Digital Menu Management features available within the Doshii Dashboard, venues can manage their menus across all of their Doshii connected Ordering and Delivery Apps, giving power back to the venue to save time in managing pricing, naming, images etc…

Are my images from Square available in Doshii?

  • Yes, if you have images attached to your menu in Square these will be automatically synchronised and appear within the Doshii Digital Menu management platform where you can also manage specific images of food and beverage across each of the connected Apps.

Where do App Orders show up in Square?

  • Orders will automatically pop-up on your Square POS, and be available in your Active Orders list. You can choose ‘View New’ to view the order and choose from a range of options – all available in the Orders section of your Square POS.

Do I need to manually set order wait times?

  • If your Ordering App supports this (most do) you configure the setting in your Ordering App.

Can I change the Order Status?

  • Yes. The Order status can be changed per order by navigating to the Orders section of your Square POS. New Orders are automatically marked as ‘new’ and you can then toggle the order to ‘Mark as in Progress’ and ‘Mark as Picked Up’

Who do we contact?

Inside Doshii with Founder Sean O’Meara

Sean O’Meara, Doshii Founder was recently recorded speaking on the Hospopreneurs podcast. Growing Doshii is now his primary focus.

Inside Impos and Doshii Development with Sean O'Meara

The latest episode of The Hospopreneurs Podcast is with Founder of Impos Point of Sale and Doshii, Sean O'Meara. It's an excellent one on hospitality technology and startups. Sean also shares honest insights on capital raising and how he turned a garage-based tech company into the machine he formally exited just 20 minutes before recording.podkite.link/hospo

Posted by Aych Media on Wednesday, 4 March 2020

Listen to the full podcast here

Technology Hospitality Trends Beyond 2020

The hospitality industry has seen many new technological advancements in recent years, some have become widely adopted, while some are only beginning to scratch the surface. 

Using a mobile device to find a venue, check out the opening times, make a reservation, order-in or order out using a delivery service has become second nature to tech-savy patrons. Now payments can be taken seamlessly from a mobile wallet, credit card or stored securely on file helping businesses meet their customer expectations, delighting them into becoming repeat customers.

As smartphones become more capable, software more innovative, and systems increasingly more automated, greater opportunities exist to implement useful Apps and Point of Sale solutions.  

Payment Technology

Point of Sale Payment Doshii

Today guests are paying for their meals in more ways than ever. One advancement has been the growth of contactless payments, specifically through mobile wallet Apps. In 2020, venues will be looking to upgrade their payment technology to accept payments through EMV contactless-enabled terminals and near field communication (NFC) too. Being able to split bills, prepay, earn loyalty points and reduce the amount of time and effort payment takes staff and guest ensures that their involvement is less transactional and more focused on their experience. Being able to track guests behaviour from booking to plate to payment brings insights to the business on a granular level and can lead to identifying trends that may bring more revenue opportunities.

What can venues do to prepare for this trend?

– Check to see if your POS is able to process the payments on the platforms your customers request.

– See if your hardware is compatible with upgrading to accepting mobile payments.

Automated Services

Tabsquare kiosk Doshii Payment API

Kiosks, Ipads, Self-service terminals are sprouting up everywhere. Kiosks are especially being broadly adopted in QSR venues where staff overheads and labour costs are high.

Recently Strike Bowling installed kiosks (connected to directly to their POS via Doshii) at selected ten pin bowling lanes and saw a 40% increase in food and beverage sales. It has been noted that digitally placed orders have a higher spend than traditionally captured orders. 

Festivals and food markets are also adopting self-service Apps where orders can be placed directly via the customer’s mobile device. Once the order is ready customers are then alerted to go collect their order. No disruption or queuing and missing the party – just convenience at the tap of a screen.

What can venues do to prepare for this trend?

Check out what Apps and web-platforms your competition are offering to attract and retain their customers.

– If you do have an online bookings system, is there a way that you can give your customers more control over what they can book online? I.e. can they add inventory and catering items to their booking? Or make payments online?

An Online Presence

POS API Doshii

Word of mouth is essential to the hospitality industry, which is why tools help to gain a better understanding of the market and help drive the venues messaging on an ongoing basis. While social media has been around for many years now, the expectation in 2020 is that hospitality industry will continue to focus on making better use of the online tools available, with the goal of providing a more positive guest experience overall.

Negative reviews and low rankings can indicate that there is a greater problem than just unhappy customers. The key to being good at social media is being consistent. If your perfect guest is a millennial who is following a movement, is hyper-connected to trends and wants to find their perfect place for them, then it’s up to you to market on the platforms which they are present – social media.

Doshii customer Ziggys Eatery in Melbourne is a perfect example of how a perfect Instagram feed promotes their brand, their food and their venue.

Order Up! Doshii Delivery API Ziggys Eatery Melbourne
Ziggys Melbourne Eatery Doshii Orderup! Delivery

What can venues do to prepare for this trend?

Establish which platforms your business aligns most strongly with your guests demographic.

Have a style guide /template for posts to look like so your brand is seen as consistent and polished.

Be consistent – post at times and days when your audience is online and attentive to your message.

Growth of Software Integrations

Doshii Payment Venue API

With Point of Sale being the heart of every hospitality business, it is imperative to tie it in with other modern applications such as delivery services and customer loyalty programs. By ensuring your POS can connect directly with a different service provider means you remove from your venue the repetitive reconciliation tasks, the need to manually re-enter orders into your POS as well centrally manage your menu items and provide real-time data insights.

What can venues do to prepare for this trend?

Check that your POS is able to integrate into other platforms with no additional (costly) development costs.

Ensure that any future upgrades will not affect your POS functionality and there is a clear future product roadmap

Doshii has successfully integrated to more than 30+ Apps and web-platforms and is able to bring together seamlessly venue POS and all the critical business Apps needed to run a modern hospitality operation.

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View The Doshii App Marketplace Here

Get into contact today and get connected with Doshii

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12 Steps To Get Your App Found and Downloaded

App Store Optimization, or ASO, is a way of ensuring your app meets app store ranking criteria and rises to the top of a search results page. Optimising your App marketplace listing starts long before the downloads begin.

Doshii have put together a list for App developers to consider when approaching a new App development project to make it easier for the App to get found, recognised, downloaded and purchased by the customer then reviewed.

Doshii App API POS

1. Market Research

First, establish your market size, what your niche/audience are currently purchasing, ask yourself is the App you want to create sustainable to itself? The App must provide a return on investment for your hard spent time and resources.

Do you know how to best monetise your idea and is there a roadmap with concrete achievable goals for you to navigate? Once you have figured out your concept of the App then it’s wise to approach the heads of the industry you are trying to target. Ask for their thoughts and opinions on the product you have created. You can ask them what their pain points are, what would help solve them via the functionality of your app and how much they would save in time, money and effort. Look at competitor Apps and their pricing – can you compete?

It’s best to make data-driven decisions rather than to wing it at this stage as your competitors will be making those tough choices based on research rather than feeling.

2. Understand Your Customer Uniquely

Your ASO strategy begins with putting yourself in your customer’s shoes. Your goal is to improve discovery in app store searches and target those keywords that drive the most traffic. The best way to identify these optimal keywords is consumer research — finding out exactly what search queries brought your customers to your app and the natural language they would use to describe it.

Keyword research is key to getting found. Questions to ask are how others would describe your App, what reasons would they articulate to search for an App like yours? What phrases or keywords are competitors using in their marketing? Are there similar words that can be used to replace the more (expensive) trending keyword.

If your audience goes beyond the English-speaking world, consider adapting your brand communication and language to the wants and needs of each audience segment – see point 5.

By having deeper insights into the behaviour and needs of your audience means that you can better target them. 

3. Start Freemium first 

Build a following. Go to the App store or App marketplace and look at what the most popular free apps are. This shows you what people are doing on their mobile devices. You can gather data on what price point your App might meet the market. Secondly, look at the paid apps. By browsing through this information you can discover not only what people are doing but what they are spending their money on, and how much money they are spending.

Having a Freemium model or a free App promotional period will encourage your audience to invest their bandwidth with your App over a paid-for competitor. Make sure that the Freemium version is not so pared back with functionality to actually annoy the user – they have downloaded your App to use and it must meet their expectation of being useful.

4. Reviews Are Worth Gold

People are swayed by what everyone else is saying – if the product review is positive then it will actually take a negative engagement with your App to change their mind and alter their purchasing choice. Be proactive and request reviews and testimonials on NPS scores, Facebook reviews and Google reviews.

A consistent flow of positive reviews serves as the highest possible validation of your app’s quality and one of the highest determinants of rank.

Send push notifications requesting the audiences input and always respond to negative reviews in a professional manner addressing the issue and offering a solution.

Maintain a large volume of five-star reviews for your app, and especially its latest version. Our 2015 Consumer Survey revealed that one-third of existing customers check an app’s ratings before downloading an update. Maintain a positive rating for an easy win.

5. Catchy App Name

Stuck for a name? Don’t forget to make it to relate to your service – ‘Descriptify’ your app name like Shopify or Runkeeper. You can also use your primary keyword (meta tag) in your name to gain an immediate boost. Other naming strategies are putting an ‘-i’ at the end of the name instead of a ‘-y’ or ‘-ey’. E.g. Doshii.

Dropping syllables in the name. E.g. waitrr. Putting a ‘u’ at the end of the name. E.g. me&u. Connecting two words to make a new one. E.g. TabSquare and OrderUP! or make a new name up  E.g. MVI, mobi2go.

Make sure that you do a bit of due diligence and not just a google search to ensure that the word/ term is not used elsewhere and does not mean something different in a different culture.

Global brand Fails : some of these brands should have googled

6. Each Platform Is Different – Choose To Differentiate

The Google App Marketplace (android) and the Apple App Store have two very different approaches when it comes to ASO keywords.

The optimal number of times to repeat a keyword in an app store product page is five, which will maximize the likelihood of ranking prominently for that keyword. Additional mentions have little to no effect on ASO and may even turn off potential customers if your description appears intentionally repetitive. Google scans your Apps description to extract relevant keywords. It’s best to use natural, customer facing language as the character limit is so vast.

The Apple App Store has a 100-character keyword field. With this in mind, it’s important to use all of the allotted characters and carefully research your keywords to maximize your organic traffic. It exclusively uses title and whatever keywords or keyword phrases you include in these 100 characters to determine which search strings your app will show up for.

7. Describe Yourself Best With No Ambiguity

Use the first three lines of your description to immediately grab your reader’s attention. Given the ever-growing number of apps in the marketplace it is best to use direct language that will avoid confusion. Make their decision easy by immediately communicating what the App does and why they should use it. Your description should be viewed as a call-to-action for potential customers.

8. Be Your Own Icon

Getting noticed really fast on your users device is all down to the recognisability of your icon. Note that the Apple App Store and Google Play marketplace vary in their approach to, and rendering of App icons. Both stores have preset standards for the ideal size, geometry, and colour scheme of app icons, designed to match the rest of the OS. The App icon should be a distilled version of your brand. It is very important that you research your competitors icons and ensure that your icon cannot be easily confused with their icon and then their App.

9. Screenshots Can Sell Your Product

While having no influence on marketplace App rankings, the screenshots, imagery and videos do drive downloads so it is good practice to put considerable effort into ensuring that the branding, sizing and content of the images relays to the viewer your Apps best features, key elements and recent enhancements.

You can upload up to 5 images (best to go traditional portrait screenshots) but only 3 will show in your gallery on-load screen. The Google Play marketplace allows video currently.

10. UX Trumps Bells And Whistles

The more useful the App the more the user will be likely to invest time and energy working out exactly what value it is to them. By making the User Experience (UX) the most significant priority the App design will lead to increasing the amount of time your App is used. Even if you extend the functionality beyond what is expected if the User cannot easily navigate they will abandon and not come back.

11. Backlink Your App EVERYWHERE

Having good search engine optimisation (seo) means that it’s easier to get found and less money needs to be spent on advertising to get your App found. By building a robust backlinking strategy your App will appear to a wider audience and appeal to more users. If you affiliate with other partners request a place on their website to display your logo and hyperlink it back to you or your App. As a member of a industry group you can build a backlink there and also start your own Wiki page

12. Update Frequently But Limit Big Changes

Engage customers within your app (such as a note prompted at login, a push notification, or an update link prominently displayed in the main navigation) notifying them of the new update and what improvements they have to look forward to. Mobile customers are looking for Apps that are constantly improving, with regular updates based on customer feedback. Apps that are frequently updated are seen, by both the App store and the customer, to be of a higher value and more customer-centric.

Listen to your customers and give notice of what changes are coming – even having a published App roadmap with estimated release dates will count towards bringing your customers information with context.

Apps are a very competitive market and if poor UX or design are affecting you now it may be best to consider a redesign and go back to the drawing board and adopt best App Store Optimisation practices from the beginning to extend the reach and scale of your App.

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