Safely reopen your bar or restaurant with the latest payments technology.
It’s been a tough few months for businesses in the UK’s restaurant sector. Never before have we seen such a monumental shift in the change of consumer habits. A shift that will no doubt have a lasting effect, especially as the rise in eating takeaway from your favourite restaurants at home has become the norm.
The latest GDP figures show that the economy has shrunk by 20.4% over the last three months and the future for restaurants looks uncertain. According to a recent YouGov poll, only half (53%) of Brits say they plan to visit restaurants as much as they did before the COVID-19 lockdown, with a keen 5% saying they will dine out more than ever once they get the chance.
So it’s clear that in order to help people get back to their old habits, bars and restaurants need to provide added reassurance that social distancing rules can be adhered to and that a safe dining experience is of a paramount importance.
As restrictions continue to lift and businesses continue to reopen, many are looking for ways that this can be done safely. Here are four ways to do so and how payments technology can help.
1. Make Safety and Sanitation a Priority
As the NHS advises, hygiene and cleanliness will be more important than ever in the coming months. Your customers will be keen to visit you, so remember to minimise risks by offering hand sanitising stations and equipping your staff with sanitising sprays, cloths or disposable wipes.
Ensure that you regularly clean any areas that customers will come into contact with, such as door handles and point-of-sale (POS) terminals. Also, install plexiglass at the bar and till areas and ensure staff wear masks.
If you’ve turned off your terminals over the past few months, you may need to restart them to ensure they pick up all the latest updates, including the recent contactless transaction increase. Here’s a guide to show you how.
2. Adapt to the New Dining Experience and Smarter Ways of Ordering
Restaurants and bars are facing steep costs to reopen, including hiring back staff, paying invoices and replacing spoiled ingredients. However, from a public health standpoint, they should have an easier path to reopening than other industries because owners can space out tables and limit capacity.
Depending on the size of your restaurant, bar or takeaway, you’ll potentially need to change the layout of your restaurant. This might include socially distanced tables and arrows on the floor directing diners to walk round the restaurant in a certain way or having separate doors for entrance and exit.
If fully opening your doors is not an option in the near future, think about using your space as a place to prepare orders for takeaway. Restaurants have adapted over the last few months, offering dining experiences delivered to customers’ doors. The lines between eating out and eating in have blurred and takeaway no longer means a Chinese meal or pizza delivery. Takeaway can now be peoples’ favourite high-end restaurant, such as Cote Restaurants, in the comfort of their own home.
3. Improve your Guests’ Experience by Letting Them Pay Ahead Online
Remote takeaway orders have increased by 33% over the past few months, which is why we’ve been rapidly equipping our customers who didn’t previously accept orders online with a range of plug-and-play solutions so they could continue to do business.
Solutions such as:
- Our new Order Ahead solution that lets your customers order and pay in advance for collections and deliveries at home or on-the-go using their own mobile device
- Our 100+ pre-built shopping carts used to easily build, host and manage your online store
- Terminals to take orders over the phone
- Hosted payments page to start taking payments, credit funds and print receipts over the phone using a PC, laptop or tablet
Ordering ahead helps to significantly reduce queues, improve order accuracy and boost revenues by encouraging repeat visits. However, with the rise of online payments, there has also been a rise in the number of scams targeting customers. Monitoring for fraud is extremely important and can mean that you sift out suspect transactions to avoid suffering any losses. It's important to do all you can to make sure you shield your business from fraudulent activity.
If you’re concerned about the security risks associated with traditional online payments, our Social Commerce App can help. With our Social Commerce app, you can generate a secure link to distribute to your customers for payment via email, text or social media.
4. Offer New Ways Your Customers Can Pay on Your Premises
Customers are seeking reassurance at every stage of the dining experience and, with Global Payments, you can offer all of the following solutions to provide just that. If possible, you should always encourage, or accept, card payments or contactless payments via mobile wallets or physical cards to reduce cash and POS handling.
Your customers may still need to come to your counters to pay, so using an EPOS system ensures you have a safer way to let them do this. Our EPOS systems also allow you to protect your staff by going paperless and digitally passing orders between front and back of house.
If you have the ability to let your customers pay at the table, even better. With our new Pay at Table solution, your customers pay whenever they want, using their own mobile device – at the table, the counter or drive-thru. They can check into their table using their own device, via an app or QR code and browse the menu to select the food/drink they want with our Order & Pay at Table solution. Then they can place their order, tip and pay all using their preferred payment method right at the table. And when they’re done, they can leave your restaurant when it suits them with. Alternatively, you can allow your restaurant/bar staff to collect contactless payments on the move using an MPOS upon delivery or collection with Global Pay Now.
If you’re a quick serve restaurant, you can cut congestion and let your customers order and pay using interactive kiosks, which have been seen to result in a +20% increase in average transaction value and can be easily cleaned regularly.
Using a Kiosk to let your customers scan and pay for food and drink is a great way to reduce pressure on your waiting staff and minimise the need for cash. With our Bleep Kiosk you can let customers choose how they digitally receive their receipt by text or email and enable conversations between customers and staff by using payment links with open commentary functionality.
Moving Forward - Together
Over the next few months, you’ll see your loyal customers begin to revisit you. They’ll want to enjoy the same great experience and the food and drink they’ve always received, and that’s still possible. As always, we’re here to help you in any way we can.
If you’d like more information, our COVID-19 page is a good place to start. We've also created a downloadable easy guide to help you and your staff which can be found here.
As the food and drink industry is important to us, we’ve got payments experts on hand to help, so if you’re looking for easier or quicker ways your customers can pay, get in touch with us on 0345 702 3344* or email firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll be happy to help.
* Lines are open from 9am to 6pm, Monday to Friday, except public holidays. To help us continually improve on our service and in the interests of security, we may monitor and/or record your telephone calls with us. Any recordings remain our sole property.