One of the hardest things in foodservice operations is fending off peak hour traffic. Be it at a stadium, a convention, a concert or just a regular food hall, when everybody congregates around the food stands and lines start to build up, the chaos begins. Not only are the staff absolutely overwhelmed with the amount of orders, but also the customers could be left waiting forever for their food to be ready.

A few challenges would arise as a result:

  1. How to keep the lines short and keep people apart for safety reasons.
  2. With limited staff, how to fulfill orders as quickly as possible.
  3. How to signal to the customers if your food stand is running low on items.

Thanks to mobile ordering technology, all these problems could be mitigated with a few clicks within your Manager Portal. There are 3 ways to do so:

1. Set up a longer ETA to delay orders

Traditionally, people judge how long their wait would be by looking at how long the lines are. Not only is that only an inaccurate estimation, but also it’s not the most ideal in a post-pandemic world where ideally, you’d want to keep everybody separated.

With mobile ordering, you can set up an ETA expectation people will see when they place an order. The FanFood system will automatically calculate the updated ETA based on your fulfillment time and the length of your order queue. 

To set up your initial ETA, all you need to do is input your average time to prep an order during low-traffic and high-traffic periods, like this:

Set up ETA on FanFood

Then you can set it and forget it. Our system will calculate the accurate ETA in real time throughout the day to signal to people how long they’d have to wait if they place an order now. This will result in fewer frustrated customers by aligning their expectations, and deter those who are not willing to wait to order later rather than now.

2. Set a maximum order cap per 15 minutes

Here’s another trick in FanFood — you can set an order cap per 15 minutes so that the system will automatically pause incoming orders when the order cap is reached. Sometimes it can be counterproductive to accept an order when you know you’re already operating beyond capacity, since it’s only going to lead to angry, impatient customers. Being able to signal to people that your stand is already operating at beyond capacity helps spread out traffic over time, and win your team some time to focus on fulfilling existing orders first. 

The best part is, the system is pretty much on autopilot — you don’t have to worry about turning on and off stores in the midst of all the actions.

3. Toggle off a store or service in real time

If you didn’t get the chance to configure the above mentioned settings, you can still turn off a store or service instantly if you’re ever overwhelmed during certain hours. For example, if you don’t have enough runners to bring orders to the customers, you can instantly turn off the “Delivery” service within the app and only offer pickup services. Or if one of your concession stands just ran out of items, you can turn off a certain item — or the store altogether — with just a toggle on the Manager Portal.

Toggle on and off services on FanFood

Gone are the days when concessionaires have to yell from behind the stand “No more hot dogs!” to eager customers surrounding the stand. You can simply toggle off an item when you run out, and customers anywhere at the venue who’s trying to place an order will see that item hidden from the menu.

To get a live demo of our platform, feel free to get in touch below!