4 Ways Artificial Intelligence is Helping Restaurants Thrive
Artificial intelligence (AI) has been making a name for itself across all industries, from manufacturing and retail to sales and marketing. It’s also been creeping stealthily into the restaurant world. There are great benefits that come with adopting this latest technology trend, for both operators and customers alike. Let’s check out 4 ways AI is helping restaurants thrive!
Helping to Manage the Supply Chain
AI-based solutions have the capability to do a number of things for supply chain management in restaurants. First, they help owners monitor inventory and track the supply journeys without missing a beat; this is critical for reducing food waste, saving time, and allowing for more intelligent demand-based ordering practices. AI can deliver real-time data on the movement of ingredients throughout the chain, which is ideal for operators to ensure their suppliers are using ethical sourcing practices. These systems can validate supplier sources and pinpoint irregularities in food and packaging processes—another key into verifying food safety.
Bringing Transparency to the Forefront
With AI pitching in on the supply chain front, restaurant owners have a keen view into where their ingredients are actually coming from. Transparency like this is what allows owners to keep customers informed on the origin of their meals. For instance, being able to market a certain seafood dish as “sustainably sourced” will appeal to those customers with environmental concerns. Transparency lends credibility to any restauranteur. And AI is helpful here because it paints a picture of the quality of ingredients—so not only can the restaurant owner be transparent with their customer, but the ingredients themselves are transparent through the use of AI.
Restaurant owners and their customers benefit greatly in the communications department thanks to AI. Website chatbots are available 24/7 to address issues, while SMS messaging can let customers exactly where their delivery driver is. AI can even comb through social media channels and respond to customer questions in real time. All of this “instant customer service” is key to building trust with new and existing diners.
Personalizing the Experience
Consumers are all about personalization. AI can play a crucial role in providing a more personalized experience for restaurant guests, as well. For example, order kiosks can offer personalized recommendations or offers based on previous orders. Drive-thru experiences are even getting in on the action: Burger King is testing a program that uses Bluetooth to detect its loyalty members, and then displays their previous orders on the screen when they pull up. IHOP is even partnering with Google Cloud’s Recommendations AI to enhance their online ordering system, expediting the ordering process and providing recommendations based on a customer’s individual preferences. Are we really that far from an AI-generated voice welcoming us by name when we walk into a restaurant?
Here at ARF Financial, we’re always on the lookout for ways technology is shaping the restaurant industry. Check out the Financial Pantry each week for new articles covering the latest trends in tech, marketing tips, and financing opportunities for your business. Our expert loan consultants are here any time if you’re on the lookout for a small business loan—stop by to learn more!