It’s like hiring more staff at zero cost.

The food and beverage industry is known for its competitiveness and thin margins. Be it restaurants, food trucks, on-property F&B outlets at hotels and malls or even concession stands within stadiums and theaters, even the more successful operations usually need years before turning a profit. That’s partly due to the fact that operating costs such as rent, labor and supplies are extremely high relative to the revenue. For example, in 2019 over 71% of restaurants made a profit margin of under 10% — just imagine the gravity of the situation in 2020 as COVID-19 brought devastating impacts on many F&B operations. 

There’s a dire need for F&B outlets to find new ways to reduce their costs. This has led to the popularity of contactless technology, where there’s no need for the customer to interact with a server or staff in-person in order to place an order or complete a transaction. Before diving into how this technology helps F&B operations cut down costs, we want to highlight some pretty evident benefits to this solution:

  • Support social distancing by removing physical interactions between staff and customers
  • Greater convenience for the customers to browse virtual menus and place orders
  • Eliminate the need for cash or card handling
  • Increase in order accuracy 
  • Streamline the ordering process to increase efficiency
  • Better allocation of labor resources to order fulfillment etc.

Contactless ordering isn’t just convenient for customers using the platform, but also helps the staff become more efficient at order handling and management. More importantly, 

What is contactless technology?

FanFood’s contactless ordering and management platform consists of 3 components:

  • Consumer App
    The consumer app comes in two forms: both a website that customers can access in a browser, or a downloadable app (search FanFood in the app store!) compatible with both Android and iOS devices. Whether your customer has a smartphone or not, they’re all able to see your virtual menu on their mobile devices, and directly order and pay on the phone.
  • Manager Portal
    Manager Portal is a website that F&B operators can log in on any portable device. Think of it as the control center of your entire operation: from editing your menu, to configuring your pickup/delivery services, to receiving an order, to alerting the kitchen, to communicating with customers, to analyzing the sales data…All you need to do can be achieved with a few taps on the dashboard.
  • Delivery App
    It’s a free app for your delivery staff to download if you want to offer delivery services. Our platform supports a myriad of delivery services: delivery to home, in-seat delivery, delivery to car (as in the case of a drive-in theater), curbside delivery, room service (as in the case of a hotel), or delivery to any designated location within your property. Delivery runners will use this app to verify order details, locate customers and confirm in-app when an order is delivered.


How does contactless technology reduce costs?

Better allocation of labor resources

By removing the manual order-taking and transaction process, F&B outlets can basically remove the role of the cashier and server who takes orders. That means you can either reduce your labor costs by completing the same number of tasks with fewer people, or better allocate resources on things like order fulfillment, property sanitation, tending to more guests etc.

Quicker services means more guests

With the use of FanFood, our partners have seen up to 75% reduction in wait time for their customers. Not only is order taking faster as customers can complete the entire process on their phones with a few taps of a button, but also order fulfillment is faster because the Manager Portal streamlines order management and internal communication. At University of North Carolina — Chapel Hill, the concession stands were able to reduce average in-seat delivery order wait time down to an astonishing 2 minutes, while cutting down pickup order wait time from over an hour to 16 minutes. 

instead of having to ask a server about the daily or weekly special, a guest’s smartphone can access the digital menu via the table’s location code and discover the information immediately. If a customer only needs 5-10 minutes to order and pay on their own, that’s an additional 5-10 minutes freed up for the staff to welcome more guests through the door. 

Reduce material cost by taking your storefront digital

If you want to update your menu, change item availability or discount prices, you no longer need to reprint all your menus — instead, do it on the fly from the Manager Portal. You no longer need servers to write down each order with pen and paper, now every digital order will accurately show up in your Manager Portal or — if you have an existing POS system like Square or Toast, FanFood can integrate into your POS system so you manage all digital orders from one single dashboard.

Smart inventory management and menu design based on data

Contactless ordering platform helps you gather and centralize all the data you need to learn about your customers and sales. You can access the data both in real time and at the end of the day: What are your top sellers? When do people place the most orders? What items tend to run out at what time? What’s your average order size? Which menus are viewed less frequently? So on and so forth.

You can then use this data to plan inventory accordingly to reduce waste, and design specials or discount offers for items that are less easy to sell. This will not only help you lower the cost, but also increase revenue and improve customer satisfaction.

Whatever type of F&B outlet you manage, you have to constantly adapt in order to emerge successful in this competitive industry with ever-changing customer preferences. COVID-19, if anything, vastly accelerated the change and highlighted the need for adaptation and innovation. 

Fortunately with the demand comes the supply of a myriad of solutions. FanFood’s mission is to empower businesses just like yours to succeed during these trying times, and we have made our contactless technology free to use for businesses. You can learn more about how FanFood can help your particular operation by requesting a quick chat with our team.