3 Advantages of Pay-at-the-Table Technology in Restaurants


The world is becoming more and more mobile, from how we shop for electronic goods and clothes to how we book taxis. We use mobile devices for everything. It’s no surprise restaurants are turning to mobile tech solutions to improve their bottom line, solve common food industry headaches, and provide a better overall experience for customers and staff.

Pay-at-the-table technology provides countless advantages to restaurants and guests. This article talks about three main ones.

1. Increased Earnings

This technology helps increase revenue because your restaurant is able to serve more people if it is being utilized. Pay-at-the-table technology enables for much faster processes, so you can serve more tables in less time, improving table turnover rates. This happens in one of several ways, or a combination of ways. For one, pay-at-the-table systems reduce trips back and forth to the POS terminal, which in turn reduces the time it takes to close the sale. As a result, tables wrap up their meal and get back to their day quicker. Friction due to split checks or servers multitasking is reduced while payments are being made.

Some venues have seen revenue increase by 15 percent or more, which in turn increases profits for the restaurant and increases customer happiness as they get to their table faster.

Higher Tips

Eateries can see higher tips if they choose to utilize pay-at-the-table system. This is accounted for by the increased awareness through the tip prompt screen that appears prior to the signature screen. Tip increases are good for the whole restaurant, resulting in happier and more productive employees. Tablet POS and pay-at-the-table technology also benefit your venue.

Higher Profits

Happier, more productive waiters and satisfied customers (who are more likely to come back) equals rising revenues, especially if you consider the higher table turnover rate. You will also enjoy fast returns on investment. Tablets and tableside devices are cheaper than traditional POS stations — or you might find software that integrates with your existing tablets. The lower initial investment means bigger and faster returns.

Think of the traditional method of settling a check. First, the waiter leaves the check on the table and waits for customers to get out a payment card. Then, he or she takes the card to a point of sale (POS) terminal to initiate the transaction. They return with the card and receipt so the customer can provide the tip amount. Finally, they go back (again!) to the POS terminal to complete the transaction.

This process is wasteful and time consuming. The check is paid in a single step with a mobile POS solution that includes pay-at-the-table technology, streamlining the process.

2. Higher Security

With identity theft and credit card fraud on the rise, many customers have become cautious about handing their card over to a stranger. Mobile pay-at-the-table technology allows them to process their cards themselves, and their eyes are always on the card.

Additionally, modern technology will also include encryption and tokenization for an extra layer of protection for payment processing. You can assure your guests that your business is committed to doing everything possible to keep their payment data safe.

Mobile pay-at-the-table solutions are the method of the future for restaurant payment processing. Payment collection is one of the biggest obstacles to efficient table turnover. Time really is money in this business, so it’s cost effective to implement mobile payment solutions. Your servers and customers will thank you for it.

When other cultures look at western payment systems, particularly in the US, they express shock that Americans will allow the waiter to leave the table in possession of their personal credit card. Mobile pay-at-the-table tech gives customers a sense of security knowing that they have control of their physical card and financial data.

A pay-at-the-table system also gives customers the option to use even more secure forms of payment like Google Wallet or Samsung Pay, both of which use passwords or biometric information to securely store and transmit credit card numbers.

3. Simple Expense Tracking

Pay-at-the-table systems provide easy access to financial data for both customers and restaurants because they are designed using the best software and practices. Restaurants can connect easily via API port to many accounting systems, automatically sending financial records and updating restaurant accounts without time-consuming and environmentally unfriendly paperwork. Now is the time to get rid of receipt paper once and for all. In general, restaurants are some of the worst offenders for waste, so getting rid of paper receipts help companies reduce receipt expenses and overall waste.

Paper receipts require buying rolls of paper and ink cartridges. You risk exposing staff and customers to BPA, a known carcinogen, if you choose to use thermal paper.

For customers, emailed receipts are actually a better option for expense reporting software, which requires a digital receipt version. You can email the receipt to the customer instead of printing it on paper that will be photographed and then discarded.

Waiters aren’t the only ones who benefit from tablet POS and pay-at-the-table technology. Client satisfaction increases as well. This is because fewer mistakes are made. We know that a great dining experience includes getting the order as requested. With pay at the table tech and tablet POS, customers can either see their orders on the screen or input them directly. This puts an end to lost orders due to misreading damaged or poorly written paper tickets and less food waste from incorrect orders being sent back.

Increased data security

Credit card fraud and identity theft, which we already mentioned, aren’t the only risks. Skimming is a known risk too. This is another problem pay-at-the-table technology prevents.

Shorter wait times are such a relief to incoming diners. When you can turn tables faster (because of streamlined payment processes and ordering), your guests don’t have to wait as long for a table to become free or for their meals to be served.

Final Thoughts

With so many potential advantages, implementing tablet POS and pay-at-the-table technology is a smart business move!


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Founded in 1994 by the late Pamela Hulse Andrews, Cascade Business News (CBN) became Central Oregon’s premier business publication. CascadeBusNews.com • CBN@CascadeBusNews.com

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