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Are Self-Ordering Kiosks Game-Changer for Restaurants?

Published March 08, 2024 Restaurant
Are Self-Ordering Kiosks Game-Changer for Restaurants?
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“Quick summary” Grow more sales while saving valuable customer time, that too with lesser staff, cost & valuable business resources.

You might be convinced at growing more sales and increasing customer satisfaction, but you are wondering how in the world, can we do at with lesser staff and cost.

We get you & totally relate with you. The restaurant industry is evolving due to technological advancements. The advent of digital gift cards, loyalty schemes, and online ordering has allowed customers to customize their dining experiences. They now have total control thanks to new technology: self-ordering restaurant kiosks.

In 2020, the self-service kiosk market was valued at $12.05 billion U.S. dollars and it is projected to reach $21.42 billion by 2027, almost doubling in size. And, 25% of restaurant customers have used a self-ordering kiosk within the past three months, which is a 7% increase year-over-year.

You know the best part? All sizes of restaurants can use our self-ordering kiosk system. If you are also willing to know more about self-ordering kiosks, how they work, their benefits, and everything in between, then this blog is all you need.

Dig down & keep scrolling!

What is Self-Ordering Kiosks?

A self-ordering kiosk, as its name would suggest, allows customers to place their own orders and make their own payments; it functions somewhat like an advanced vending machine. These kiosks are located in a range of locations, including restaurants, retail establishments, airports, and resorts.

Self-Ordering Kiosk

Typically, these devices comprise a touchscreen—often a tablet—that has an intuitive digital interface. The menu for the restaurant will be shown on this screen, which will also assist customers with the ordering procedure, including food customization, payment, and pickup.

Of course, restaurant kiosks are just things in the absence of software. Kiosks must be equipped with software that enables menu display and digital ordering, as well as integration with your current POS system.

As the consumer places their order, the kiosk can display prompts with various promos, personalized order options, or suggestions. It allows consumers to place orders immediately without the need for human help or a salesperson. It's similar to always having a virtual companion at every table.

The Rise of Self-Ordering Systems

In this growing tech-driven environment and competitive times, staying updated with emerging trends and finding ways to simplify customer experience is more than crucial.

Among all the emerging trends in the restaurant, one popular one is Self Ordering Kiosks. This technology is not new, various big restaurant chains have implemented it and saw huge returns.

Let’s understand what the numbers have to say:

According to McDonald's, establishments that installed kiosks had an average increase in sales of 5% to 6%. Additionally, Chili's witnessed a staggering 20% spike in dessert sales after adding self-ordering kiosks to its tables.

The increase in sales can be attributed mostly to changes in customer behavior. Customers have grown accustomed to the convenience and quickness of online ordering, and they now want the same degree of control, choice, and customization when visiting a restaurant in person.

Restaurant kiosks are ideally positioned to satisfy customers' evolving expectations because they have been specifically designed to offer simpler and more customized ordering experiences.

Here’s one more existing stat:

And it's not only tech-savvy Millennials who want more control over their dining experiences. Tillster discovered that customers of all ages were keen to use self-ordering kiosks. Indeed, 30% of those consumers stated they would rather order from a self-ordering kiosk rather than a cashier if the queues were the same length, and 65% of those customers stated they would visit a restaurant more frequently if self-service kiosks were available.

How Does Self-Ordering Kiosks Works in Restaurants?

How Does Self-Ordering Kiosks Works in Restaurants?

Self-ordering kiosks are attractive because they are simple and efficient. Here is a step-by-step explanation of how these kiosks work:

  1. Menu Selection: The first step for customers is to choose what they want from the digital menu that is shown on the kiosk screen. Customers can easily locate what they're looking for thanks to the menu's categorization, which makes navigation simple and quick. Customers are also able to view combo packages and exclusive savings.
  2. Personalization: Personalization is crucial. Customers can personalize their orders at the kiosk by changing the ingredients, portion amounts, and any specific requirements. This level of control ensures that each order is precisely tailored to the customer's preferences, with no human help or involvement.
  3. Processing of Payments: Customers proceed to the safe payment portal included in the kiosk after completing their order. We accept a variety of payment methods, such as cash, credit cards, and mobile wallets. Therefore, the buyer can use their chosen payment method to make a payment security.
  4. Order Verification: After successful payment, the kiosk provides an order confirmation receipt, which can be printed or emailed to the kitchen staff. This smooth communication guarantees that the kitchen staff gets right to work preparing the order. It also eliminates confusion between front-of-house and back-of-house staff, while increasing order accuracy and customer happiness.
  5. Delivery of Orders: Customers can have their food served to their table, pick it up at a designated counter, or order takeout. The self-ordering kiosk accelerates the ordering process, cutting down on wait times and improving dining efficiency all around.

Benefits of Self-Ordering Kiosks

As the popularity of self-ordering kiosks continues to surge in the restaurant industry, it's crucial to find out about the substantial benefits they bring to businesses. While the initial investment may seem significant, the long-term advantages are compelling. Knowing about the benefits of self-ordering kiosks and how they help your restaurant business boost customer satisfaction, sales, and revenues which also reduces errors and staff dependency is important.

Benefits of Self-Ordering Kiosks

To know more about the same along with some interesting numbers, keep reading!

Improved Customer Experience

In the hospitality industry, providing a great customer experience is crucial because it directly affects how guests feel about a hotel, restaurant, or any service. When customers have a positive experience, they are more likely to come back, recommend the place to others, and leave good reviews. It builds loyalty and helps businesses stand out in a competitive market. This is where - the self-ordering kiosk comes in and helps in boosting customer experience.

Here’s how Self-Ordering kiosks help boost customer Experience:

  • Speed and Efficiency: In these, busy times customers are always on the lookout for quick and efficient customer service. Self-ordering kiosks make it possible and help customers to place their orders quickly and efficiently.
  • Order Accuracy: Automated order entry minimizes the risk of human errors in taking down customer preferences. It ensures that customers get precisely what they ordered, contributing to higher satisfaction.
  • Personalization and Customization: Self-ordering kiosks allow customers to customize their orders based on preferences, dietary restrictions, or portion sizes. This personalization enhances the dining experience and meets individual customer needs.
  • Visual Menu Displays: High-quality visual displays with images and detailed descriptions of menu items provide customers with a clear understanding of what they are ordering and help them make informed choices.
  • Complimentary items: Self-ordering kiosks can suggest additional items or promotions, encouraging customers to explore complementary menu options or upgrade their orders. This contributes to increased sales and revenue.
  • Convenient Payment Options: Self-ordering systems support various payment methods, including credit/debit cards, mobile payments, and cash. This flexibility enhances convenience for customers, allowing them to choose their preferred payment method.
  • Order Status Updates: Real-time updates on the status of orders, such as preparation and readiness, keep customers informed and engaged. This transparency helps manage expectations and reduces uncertainty.
  • Access to Allergen Information: Displaying allergen information on the kiosk helps customers with dietary restrictions make informed choices. This transparency fosters trust and caters to a broader customer base.

Reduced Costs

When ordering using traditional methods, a significant portion of the workforce is devoted to this task alone. In addition to interacting with customers, the waitstaff is paid to take orders, relay them to the kitchen, and make sure the right items are served to the right tables.

While this strategy has advantages, particularly in venues where individualized service is critical, it is a significant expense center. Salaries, training, and the unavoidable overheads that come with having a larger workforce can all have a significant impact on a restaurant's profitability.

Here's where self-ordering kiosks come into play, and they can save labor costs.

  • Reduces labor costs: These ordering kiosks have a direct impact on the number of employees needed to do this task by automating the ordering procedure. Customers can place orders directly, thanks to user-friendly interfaces, which eliminates the requirement for intermediaries. This suggests that fewer order-taking employees are required, but it does not entail their total elimination.
  • Efficient utilization of resources: Restaurants are able to employ their human resources more effectively as a result, possibly repurposing them for jobs like housekeeping, preparing meals, or customer service that improve the overall dining experience.
  • Easy training for employees: With a workforce who are acquainted with the complexities of online food ordering systems, training employees to handle and oversee kiosk operations becomes a more efficient and cost-effective procedure.
  • Reduced errors: Another indirect cost savings result from reduced human error. Order-taking errors may result in lost revenue, wasted food, and reimbursements, among other consequences. Restaurants can reduce their costs even further by eliminating these errors using automated technologies.

Decreased Wait Times & Increased Efficiency

One of the major benefits of self-ordering kiosks is their capacity to increase efficiency and production in your business. Allowing clients to place orders independently reduces the pressure on your staff during peak hours. This speeds up the ordering procedure and reduces the possibility of order errors.

How does it help in decreasing wait times and boosting efficiency?

A kiosk allows your consumers to order and pay fully autonomously. No more managing cash, no more checkout issues, and no more incorrect orders. Self-ordering kiosks have made things easy for everyone.

With your employees freed up from taking orders and processing payments, they can concentrate on other important activities like meal preparation, quality control, and maintaining a pleasant eating environment. This improved approach results in faster table turnover and increased income.

  • Enhanced customer experience: A self-ordering kiosk can expedite the ordering process and reduce wait times by enabling customers to place their orders and pay with only a few clicks. Following that, customers have the option to exit the queue and wait for their order to be ready before getting it from a designated counter.

Quick Stats: hungry customers dislike waiting in long lineups. In fact, a Tillster survey discovered that if the line to order from a cashier is longer than 5 persons, 75% of customers would prefer to order from a self-service kiosk. What if the line is ten persons long? A staggering 91% of respondents claim they would prefer to place their order at a restaurant kiosk.

  • Enhanced operational efficiency: Although this might not seem like a much speedier process, Appetize research indicated that using kiosks cut down on total order time by about 40%. Some restaurants, such as Moe's Southwest Grill in Pittsburgh, have even opened kiosk-only locations to capitalize on the operational benefits that come with speedier ordering and shorter lineups.

Easy interaction with online channels

Additionally, a surprising benefit of getting your hands on feature-rich self-ordering kiosks is its incorporation with other digital platforms, such as "Online Food Ordering. In these digital times, having a system that can seamlessly connect with an online ordering system and help you sync both channels, in turn, can lead to more streamlined management and enhanced customer satisfaction. fulfill orders

The integration of self-ordering kiosks with online channels can yield surprising benefits for businesses. By facilitating easy interaction with online platforms, such as websites or mobile apps, self-ordering kiosks enhance the accessibility of a restaurant's offerings to a broader audience. Customers who prefer online interactions can seamlessly place their orders through the kiosk, contributing to higher online sales and revenue.

It helps you align with the growing trend of digital and contactless transactions and expand the reach of the business beyond the physical location. The ease of managing both in-person and online ordering through self-ordering kiosks makes your operations so much more efficient, accommodating diverse customer preferences and ultimately boosting overall sales and revenue streams.

Increased Average Order Value

Perhaps the most significant advantage of self-ordering kiosks is their impact on increase average order value per customer. By leveraging the right strategies, self-ordering kiosks create a dynamic and interactive ordering experience that encourages customers to explore, customize, and spend more, ultimately contributing to an increased average order value per customer.

In the case of McDonald's, the food chain discovered that customers who used a kiosk spent almost one dollar more on each order, which led to a 30% rise in the average check size.

Here’s how self-ordering kiosks boost average order value per customer:

  • Strategic upselling: Instead of depending on your staff to emphasize your high-margin items and expensive add-ons, your self-ordering kiosk can do it for you. A self-ordering kiosk pushes targeted and intuitive upsell prompts while guests create their orders. It may have exclusive offers like 2-for-1 bargains, but it may also contain calculated upsells like purchasing more toppings, upgrading to premium sides, or combining meals into a combo.
  • Visual and Interactive Menus: The digital interface allows for visually appealing menu displays with images and detailed descriptions. Customers are enticed to explore a wider range of menu items, potentially choosing more items or higher-priced options, thus contributing to a higher average order value.
  • Customization and Add-Ons: Self-ordering kiosks empower customers to customize their orders easily. The ability to personalize meals with add-ons or modifications often comes with additional charges, contributing to an increase in the overall order value.
  • Loyalty Programs Integration: Self-ordering kiosks seamlessly integrate with loyalty programs. By offering incentives such as discounts or rewards for larger orders, restaurants encourage customers to spend more, contributing to an increased average order value over time.
  • Repeat Orders and Easy Reordering: Kiosks can store customer order history for easy reordering. The convenience of reordering favorite items or past selections encourages repeat business and provides opportunities for customers to add more items during subsequent visits.
  • Interactive Recommendations: Kiosks can use artificial intelligence to provide personalized recommendations. By suggesting items based on past orders or popular choices, the kiosk influences customers to explore additional menu offerings, potentially leading to larger and more diverse orders.

Reduced Workload & Increased Employee Productivity

As we have discussed, the self-ordering kiosk can help restaurants streamline their workflows and reduce the workload of employees while enhancing their productivity.

Here’s how self-ordering kiosks help in reducing workload and increasing employee productivity:

  • Eliminating manual work: Self-ordering kiosks eliminate the need for staff to manually take orders, reducing the workload associated with this repetitive task. By eliminating manual work, employees can easily redirect their efforts toward more valuable tasks, such as food preparation, quality customer service, etc.
  • Reduced back & forth: Self-ordering kiosks streamline the entire ordering process while eliminating the need for constant back and forth between the back of house & front of house employees. This optimization contributes to smoother restaurant operations by reducing bottlenecks, minimizing manual intervention, and enhancing the overall flow of customer transactions.
  • Enhanced Accuracy: Automated order entry through self-ordering kiosks minimizes the risk of human error in recording customer preferences. This results in more accurate order fulfillment and higher customer satisfaction.
  • Improved Table Turnover: Detail: The efficiency of self-ordering kiosks, coupled with reduced wait times, leads to quicker table turnover. This is particularly advantageous during peak hours, allowing staff to serve more customers and optimize the restaurant's seating capacity.
  • Focus on Customer Interaction: With the order-taking burden alleviated, staff members can allocate more time to engaging with customers. They can provide assistance, answer queries, and ensure a positive dining experience. This personalized interaction contributes to increased customer satisfaction and loyalty.
  • Training Efficiency: Training staff on self-ordering kiosks is typically quicker compared to traditional order-taking methods. These easy-to-use and flexible self-ordering systems simplify the training process and enable new employees to adapt rapidly to their roles, reducing training time and costs.

Self-Ordering Kiosks: The Common Challenges and Solutions!

Implementing self-ordering kiosks in a restaurant can bring various benefits, but there are also common challenges associated with their adoption. By proactively addressing these challenges, a restaurant can enhance the success of its self-ordering kiosk implementation and create a positive experience for both customers and staff.

Here are some challenges and potential solutions to address them:

  1. Difficulty for Non-Tech-Savvy Customers: Some customers, especially older or less tech-savvy individuals, might find it challenging to use self-ordering kiosks, leading to frustration and potential delays in the ordering process.

    Solution: Provide clear and simple instructions on the kiosk interface and properly train your staff who are available to assist customers and guide them through the ordering process. Place visible signage about the process that can guide the customers.

  2. Higher Initial Costs: Implementing self-ordering kiosks involves an initial substantial investment in technology, which might be difficult for some businesses, particularly smaller ones.

    Solution: Conduct a cost-benefit analysis to showcase long-term savings and increased efficiency. Explore financing options or leasing arrangements to spread out the initial costs. Do the research properly and find out the vendor who can provide the best system at an affordable cost.

  3. Technical Issues: Technical glitches, such as system crashes or touchscreen malfunctions in the restaurant self-ordering kiosk, can disrupt the ordering process for customers and have a significant impact on restaurant operations and sales.

    Solution: Regularly maintain and update the kiosk software. Choose a reliable hardware provider, and ensure your staff is trained to handle basic troubleshooting problems. Implement a system for quick response and resolution of technical issues.

  4. Payment Processing Challenges: Issues with payment processing, such as declined cards or slow transaction times, can frustrate customers.

    Solution: Choose a kiosk with reliable and secure payment processing capabilities. Support multiple payment options and ensure that the payment system complies with industry security standards. Implement regular checks to identify and resolve payment processing issues promptly.

  5. Resistance to Change: Both customers and staff may resist the transition to self-ordering kiosks due to unfamiliarity or a preference for traditional ordering methods.

    Solution: Provide training to staff to ensure they can assist customers with the kiosk. Implement an easy and attractive approach to gradually introduce self-ordering kiosks, allowing customers and staff to become accustomed to the new system. Offer incentives or promotions to encourage customers to try the kiosks.

  6. Maintenance and Upkeep: Regular maintenance is essential to keep the kiosks functioning optimally. Neglecting maintenance can lead to hardware failures and a negative customer experience.

    Solution: Establish a routine maintenance schedule for the kiosks. Choose kiosks with easily replaceable and upgradeable components. Work closely with the vendor to address any hardware or software issues promptly.

The landscape of self-ordering kiosks in restaurants is continually evolving. Several trends are shaping the future of this technology. However, staying updated with the evolving trends will help restaurants stay competitive and leverage the capabilities of self-ordering kiosk technology to meet customer expectations and enhance operational efficiency.

Here are some key future trends relating to self-ordering kiosks that you should keep in mind:

  1. Contactless and Mobile Integration: The demand for contactless solutions has increased, driven by hygiene concerns and the convenience of mobile ordering. Future self-ordering kiosks are likely to integrate seamlessly with mobile apps, allowing customers to place orders using their smartphones and facilitating a smoother overall experience.
  2. AI and Personalization: Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning will play a more significant role in self-ordering systems. Advanced algorithms can analyze customer preferences and behavior, providing personalized recommendations and enhancing the overall customer experience.
  3. Biometric Authentication & Blockchain: Biometric authentication methods, such as fingerprint or facial recognition, may be incorporated for secure and convenient user identification. Blockchain technology may be adopted to enhance the security and transparency of transactions in self-ordering systems.
  4. Augmented Reality (AR) Menu Displays: AR technology can enhance the visual representation of menu items. Customers can use AR to see virtual images of dishes, and nutritional information, and even receive interactive cooking demonstrations, creating a more engaging and immersive ordering experience.
  5. Cloud-Based Solutions: Cloud-based self-ordering kiosk systems offer scalability and flexibility. They allow restaurant operators to manage menus, updates, and analytics centrally, making it easier to scale operations and adapt to changing customer preferences.
  6. Data Analytics and Predictive Insights: Enhanced data analytics capabilities will empower restaurants to derive actionable insights from customer behavior. Predictive analytics can help forecast demand, optimize inventory, and tailor promotions based on historical data.
  7. Dynamic Pricing Strategies: Self-ordering kiosks may incorporate dynamic pricing, allowing restaurants to adjust prices based on factors such as demand, time of day, or special promotions. This flexibility can optimize revenue and provide value to customers.
  8. Multi-lingual Support: To cater to diverse customer bases, self-ordering kiosks may offer multi-lingual support. This ensures that customers can interact with the kiosk in their preferred language, contributing to a more inclusive experience.

How To Choose The Right Self-Ordering Kiosk For a Restaurant?

Selecting the right self-ordering kiosk system is a critical decision for any business. With numerous options available, it's essential to conduct thorough research to find a system that not only fits your budget but also aligns with the specific needs and preferences of your target customers. By investing time in research and choosing wisely, you ensure that the selected self-ordering kiosk system becomes a valuable asset, contributing to increased efficiency, customer satisfaction, and overall success for your business.

Evaluate Your Layout: The type of self-service restaurant kiosk you select will have an enormous effect on your restaurant layout. Tabletop kiosks are significantly smaller and should be simpler to install in your current layout, while bigger independent units may require you to reorganize your interiors to create room for them.

Kiosks work best when they are in direct view of the entry, where there will be a lot of foot traffic, but they shouldn't block emergency exits or crucial passageways. Put yourself in the customer's position: can they stand at a kiosk without feeling crowded or uncomfortable? Is the kiosk at an accessible location for them?

Consider important features: Although self-service kiosks have a lot of functions, you might not need them all. Your clients will become confused and irritated if you overcrowd the interface of your kiosk with elements that are irrelevant to them. Since you are the expert on your customers, choose features that will appeal to them the most. Some examples of such features are payment alternatives, menu items that offer potential for upselling, and integration with reward programs.

Easy to navigate: While the interface's design should match your restaurant's style, ease of use should be the top priority because not all guests will have extensive familiarity with digital technologies. Would you be able to use the self-service kiosk to finish your order and payment if you were a customer and didn't need assistance from workers nearby? The purpose of "self-service" is defeated otherwise. It should be as basic as feasible.

Integration With Your Point of Sale: Make sure the POS system you purchase for your company is compliant and can be easily linked with your current POS system before making the purchase. It makes restaurant operations significantly easier. For instance, the POS will update your menu automatically, combine all of your transactions, and let you add or remove features based on business needs. A great POS will also have comprehensive reporting features, allowing you to track consumer behavior and make suitable changes.

Customization Options: The kiosk should allow for easy customization of the menu, including adding or removing items, updating prices, and accommodating special requests. And, if your restaurant serves a diverse customer base, consider a kiosk that supports multiple languages. The kiosk should support various payment options, including credit/debit cards, mobile payments, and even cash.

Other Factors to Consider:

  • Quality Build: Invest in a kiosk with durable hardware designed to withstand the rigors of a restaurant environment, including spills and constant use.
  • Easy Maintenance: Choose a kiosk with easily accessible components for maintenance and repairs.
  • Scalability: Consider the scalability of the kiosk system. Choose a solution that can easily adapt to the changing needs and growth of your restaurant.

Self-Ordering Kiosk Implementation + Expert Tips!

So, you have got to know that getting a self-ordering kiosk is quite beneficial for restaurants and there is a significant probability of its future growth as well. But, the real work starts when it comes to implementation. You need to get all the required hardware, and software, designating a space, and other things around it.

So, let’s dig down to find the process for implementation and some tips to keep in mind:

  • Prepare the Space: Designate a suitable space within your restaurant for the self-ordering kiosks. Consider factors such as customer traffic flow, accessibility, and integration with your existing layout. Ensure there's sufficient space for customers to navigate comfortably.
  • Choose and Acquire Hardware: Begin by selecting the self-ordering kiosk hardware that meets your restaurant's requirements. This includes touch-screen displays, payment terminals, printers, and any additional components. Purchase the necessary equipment from a reliable supplier.
  • Select and Install Software: Choose the self-ordering kiosk software that aligns with your restaurant's needs. Work with the software provider to customize the interface, menu options, and integration with your Point of Sale (POS) system. Install the software on each kiosk, ensuring compatibility with your chosen hardware.
  • Configure Network and Connectivity: Set up a robust network infrastructure to support the connectivity of the self-ordering kiosks. Ensure a stable internet connection for real-time communication with the POS system and for processing online payments securely.
  • Install Kiosks and Conduct Testing: Physically install the self-ordering kiosks in the designated space within your restaurant. Connect all hardware components and configure the software settings. Conduct thorough testing to ensure that each kiosk functions correctly, processes orders accurately, and communicates seamlessly with the POS system.
  • Train Staff and Launch: Train your staff on how to operate and maintain the self-ordering kiosks. Provide guidance on assisting customers, handling technical issues, and ensuring a positive experience.

Some additional tips after implementing a self-ordering kiosk to ensure smooth operations and higher customer adoption:

  • Work with the vendor to customize the kiosk interface based on your menu, branding, and customer preferences.
  • Ensure seamless integration between the self-ordering kiosks and your POS system.
  • Develop clear and concise instructional materials, including signage and digital displays, to guide customers through the self-ordering process.
  • Launch the self-ordering kiosks with a marketing campaign to create awareness among customers. Offer promotions or incentives to encourage initial adoption.
  • Continuously monitor the performance of the self-ordering system, track usage analytics, and gather feedback from customers and staff to make necessary adjustments and improvements.


The most important takeaway from this piece is how restaurants and hospitality are changing and adapting to the latest trends, as well as how implementing the appropriate technology may be game changers for restaurant operations.

Self-ordering restaurant kiosks have emerged as a creative and cost-effective alternative for increasing operational efficiency and guest happiness.

Restaurant managers can make informed decisions about incorporating these interactive kiosks into their establishments by carefully weighing the advantages, initial costs, ongoing expenses, and potential return on investment.

With technology constantly transforming the dining experience, self-service kiosk solutions boost productivity, accuracy, and income. Self-ordering kiosks have the power to transform the restaurant business and give customers a smooth, customized ordering experience since they can be customized to fit the needs of various restaurant types.

Embracing this technology can help restaurant owners put their businesses at the forefront of modern dining trends, ensuring long-term success.

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Frequently Asked Questions(FAQs)

The typical price range for kiosk hardware is between $700 to $5,000. As you may expect, this covers a broad spectrum of kiosks, from tablets on counters to devices that stand alone. Different restaurant kinds and layouts will necessitate different-sized kiosks; for example, quick-service restaurants might need a different kiosk than casual dining restaurants.

Let’s find out the costs associated with implementing self-ordering kiosks:

  • Costs associated with kiosk software and hardware: These constitute the main outlay of funds for kiosk systems. It covers the cost of kiosks, touchscreens, processors, and operating systems. Depending on whether the kiosk is countertop or freestanding, the pricing range will change. Do you require a more durable outdoor kiosk? Is it necessary to add a receipt printer? So, all these considerations will decide the final cost of hardware and software for self-ordering kiosks.
  • Installation and integration costs: Expertise is needed for the correct installation of self-ordering kiosks and their integration with current point-of-sale (POS) systems. These services could be more expensive, but they are necessary for smooth operations and data synchronization. For instance, business owners might need an iPad OS or an Android system to operate their kiosks.
  • Maintenance and support: Ongoing expenses related to self-service kiosks include routine maintenance, software upgrades, and technical assistance. To make sure the kiosks continue to be safe and function as intended, it is imperative to account for these costs in the budget. It is a good idea for restaurant managers to weigh the expenses associated with implementing any available warranty alternatives for their new kiosk systems.

Kiosks come in a variety of forms for different uses. Continue reading to find out which type of self-service kiosk is appropriate for your business.

  • Check-in kiosks: Check-in kiosks are most typically employed in the healthcare and hotel industries, but they also have applications in business and retail settings. Check-in kiosks are freestanding terminals that visitors, patients, or customers can utilize upon arrival. It offers ID verification capabilities, a quicker and more efficient check-in process, and a reduction in data entry errors by doing away with manual forms.
  • Hospitality Check-In Kiosks: Check-in kiosks are also frequently found in hospitality facilities such as hotels and cruise ships. Many of the advantages of healthcare check-in kiosks also apply to hotel check-in kiosks, such as shorter wait times, contactless options, seamless payment, and overall enhanced experience. Self-check-in kiosks at hotels allow customers to bypass the line at the front desk and continue with their journey, which enhances the overall client experience.
  • Visitor Management Kiosks: Visitor management check-in kiosks in business settings are useful for monitoring campus visits. For businesses looking to speed up the check-in process, check-in kiosks are an excellent addition to the reception area.
  • Digital signage and wayfinding kiosks: These public information kiosks are positioned in busy indoor or outdoor spaces to assist individuals in navigating unfamiliar or maybe confusing environments. The best places for navigation kiosks are huge outdoor retail centers, stadiums, hospitals, and malls.
  • Way-finding kiosks: They can also function as digital signage advertising kiosks because they are frequently positioned in high-traffic retail settings. When not in use, these kiosks can show advertisements for sales and promotions from local stores.
  • Outdoor kiosks: Outdoor kiosks feature a strong design that can endure the elements. Although these kiosks can be utilized for any purpose, they can be particularly effective for kiosk marketing campaigns due to their placement in busy areas. Cities frequently utilize outdoor information kiosks to post timetables for public transportation, provide maps and directions, and occasionally even offer charging outlets for mobile devices or public wi-fi.
  • Self-checkout Kiosks: Self-checkout kiosks are increasingly prevalent at convenience stores and clothes merchants, and they are popular in retail settings including grocery stores and big box stores. Self-checkout kiosks are popular among customers because they are quick and convenient.

Self-ordering kiosks undoubtedly save a ton of time for both customers and companies. Are they, however, worth the money spent?

The benefit of self-ordering kiosks is that they shorten wait times and minimize lineups, allowing staff members to focus on their other key responsibilities. Because clients enter their own orders, they also reduce order errors. Not to mention how convenient it is for customers to place orders whenever they want without having to wait for a real cashier.

The drawback of self-ordering kiosks is that they required a substantial upfront investment—from $1000 to $5,000—as well as ongoing maintenance and monthly software fees. Furthermore, when placing a meal order, certain clients might value the human touch.

But, technology and convenient customer service are the need of the hour. On top of it, self-ordering kiosks can help your store and analyze customer data as well- further helping with personalized suggestions and marketing initiatives as well.

So, what’s the verdict?

Are self-ordering kiosks worth it? Ultimately, that decision comes down to each business’s unique needs and customer preferences. You can do the research and opt for a trial to see how your customer reacts to a new technology. Based on your research and trial, you can make the right decision for your restaurant business.

Integrating self-ordering kiosks with the Point of Sale (POS) system in a restaurant brings several advantages, contributing to a more seamless and efficient operational workflow.

Here are the key reasons for integrating self-ordering kiosks with a POS system:

  • Real-Time Inventory Management: Integrated systems provide real-time updates to the POS system, reflecting real-time updates in inventory levels as orders are placed and fulfilled. This allows the restaurant to manage inventory more efficiently, reducing the likelihood of stockouts or overstock situations.
  • Menu Synchronization: With the integration of the POS system and self-ordering system, menu synchronization which includes changes to the menu, such as additions, removals, or price adjustments becomes simpler. It ensures that customers are presented with accurate and up-to-date menu options and pricing.
  • Consistent Pricing and Promotions: Integrated systems help maintain consistency in pricing and promotions across all channels. Any discounts, promotions, or special offers configured in the POS system are automatically reflected on the self-ordering kiosks, providing a unified customer experience.
  • Streamlined Payment Processing: Payments made through self-ordering kiosks are seamlessly integrated with the POS system, facilitating streamlined and accurate transaction processing. This integration reduces the chances of discrepancies in payment reconciliation.
  • Centralized Reporting and Analytics: Integration enables centralized reporting and analytics by consolidating data from both self-ordering kiosks and traditional POS transactions. This unified data provides valuable insights into customer preferences, popular menu items, and overall business performance.
  • Adaptability to Future Technologies: As technology evolves, an integrated system provides a more adaptable infrastructure. This adaptability allows the restaurant to incorporate future technologies, such as mobile ordering or delivery services, with greater ease and efficiency.

There is not anything one-size-fits-all approach. There are certain factors and features that you should look for in a self-ordering kiosk to get the worth of your investment. However, there are certain features that every restaurant business should look for in a self-ordering kiosk to get the best of everything.

Let’s find some of the common ones:

  • Menu Building: You should be able to create an aesthetically pleasing menu at your restaurant kiosk by including images of each dish. Customers should be able to click on various menu items to get a description or ingredient list.
  • Menu Prompts: To increase the average check size, look for kiosk software that makes it simple to make customizations as per customer preferences and upsell prompts seamlessly.
  • Loyalty programs: Seek self-ordering kiosks with integrated loyalty programs and other marketing benefits that can save consumer data for upcoming orders or promotional campaigns.
  • Real-time alerts: Increase productivity by implementing a system that may send text or email messages to clients' mobile devices or individual displays to notify them when their orders are available.
  • Remote Monitoring and Management: Centralized monitoring and management capabilities allow restaurant staff to track kiosk performance, update menus remotely, and address issues promptly.
  • Variety Of Payment Options: Search for a kiosk that accepts magstripe, EMV chip cards, and mobile payments like Apple Pay. Customers of today are more and more interested in contactless payment methods. Furthermore, cash payments should be accepted at your self-ordering kiosk as well.