Restaurants must not undermine the customer engagement and exposure that these apps ensure
Of late, while more and more people are lapping up dining apps like Zomato, Dineout, EazyDiner, restaurants are starting to have a distaste for them and many have already logged out of these platforms. These apps are facing backlash over resentment against steep discounts.
Aggregrators and apps have made life easier in accessing a variety of offers and diners access the apps for added benefits rather than just deals and discounts. In fact, there is maximum engagement, exposure for most restaurants and this complements the business. In addition, one can discover new places, book a table, and get cash back offers.
For instance, Vivek Kapoor, co-founder of Dineout, has introduced dynamic menu and pricing on his app. He feels that an app should be able to perform multiple roles so that more people get used to it. “Our digital menu solution utilises data analytics and artificial intelligence (AI), which support dynamic pricing. Since dining is a complex business, it’s good to have an integrated solution provider wherein the restauranteur and the consumer know the functionality and benefits of the app. One can order food and drinks recommended in real-time. It is important for a restaurant to know how to get the most profitable dish to be the most sale-able. For example, if you order dal from any Indian cuisine outlet, the app will prompt for the choice of breads or a series of options from your last meal ordered. It also gives you a plethora of brand marketing options and chef-special items on the menu. The digital menus can not only reduce the table turnaround time, but also increase efficiency, enabling better service and feedback and more customers for restaurants. We also have a user interface that allows diners to quickly search restaurants based on cuisine, location or cost, including a map-view highlighting the closest restaurants,” says Kapoor.
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At a time when top restaurants are becoming increasingly accessible to food connoisseurs, looking for a great dining experience, Rocky Mohan, founder and mentor at Gourmet Passport (GP), has a solution to help diners save on the expenses annually. GP, an app-based luxury membership programme offers ‘buy one get one free deals’ at over 1,000 restaurants and bars across 5-star hotels and standalone chains in the top cities of the country. “We create pre-selected collections from the menu to help diners eat at the choicest fine dining locations. One can unlock three coupons with partner restaurants in a year. The added benefit is that you can have a complimentary buffet, dish or drink when another is ordered of same or higher value — just imagine the savings,” says Mohan, who foresees dining out as a trend that will never go out of style.
With ease of payment and cashback offers, apps help in savings on products and services. Kapoor, who has partnered with Gourmet Passport, also rolls out special festival offers which, he feels, gives instant gratification. “The loyalty programmes help the users save on what they order. Incentive deals encourage dining out and diners can discover the best restaurants and incredible gourmet delights in multiple cities just by clicking on an app,” he says.