Having written about the tabletmenus and new iPad POS system in the restaurant business I thought I was comeletely done with this theme, an amazing piece of news, some pics and videos with examples of such restaurants, briefely discussed advantages and aha-done and nothing interesting left to write about, but some comments and especially the discution with Viola have revieled that there are still a lot of question to talk and discuss. And one of them is it really profitable for a restaurant to install a tablet menu?Or it can simply ruin the business and maybe even the whole industry of eating out?
So I’ve started my detailed investigation and now glad to present its results.
The first thing coming to the mind simply with the thought of implementing of digital menu is of course its cost. The fact, pointed by many authors, is that there is no direct answer on this question.
On the one hand, a restaurant with an iPad menu gets a clear profit. They don’t need any more to reprint an ordinary menu many times a year investing one or two thousands of dollar in order to adjust some changes but need to pay once for the digital menu and make changes with one klick even thousands times a day. The other advantage is that since an iPad menu installed the restaurants don’t need to pay the POS system having it at the same time on the digital menu that is easily synchronized with all App products allowing to overview the continuously change of items. And it’s impossible to drop out the „WOW-effect“ of entering the restaurant and getting an iPad instead of printed menu. Of course we are all living in a world of hi-tech innovations but even now there are a lot of people who have neither iPad nor iphone. For example, personally me) isn’t it cool to get some experience and to find out some information about sort of wine or enjoy big pictures to every kind of dishes?!
On the other hand as Viola has pointed out in her comment, the eating out is for most people a family ritual. In most cases it irritates when someone uses a cell phone during the dinner. So the same can be true for the digital menus, when all the waiting time can be devoited to the playing with it. Hence going out people are more eager to feel themselves relaxed and not like sitting in the office. Talking about profitability of such digital menus, we don’t have to forget the fact that they are easily destroid, the screens can brake or crack or simply the ipad can be stolen. Then it seems to make more looses then profit.
And to continue my post I’d like to give the last point, that is of great importance for me personally. For me the feeling of holding a printed, well designed menu, the smell of paper can’t be replaced. We work adn study, chatting with our friends a lot and thus to order the meal using again a technical device?! No, I’d like my eyes relax. And of course no digital menu can’t replace the real personal communication with a waitress/waiter and their qualified tips (we are not discussing here the cases when the stuff is incompetent). But the role of waiteress/waiter is a topic for another post…