They are most certainly one of the main digital food trends on the international and national scenes: we are talking about retail kiosks, interactive kiosks that are increasingly find inside restaurants, bars, hotels and in stores, supermarkets and so on.

In recent years, the totem kiosk market has increased disproportionately, on the wave of consumer appreciation. However, the advantages are not just limited to the public: the very companies that decide to install the totem kiosks in their stores – for example in their own cafeteria – can gain great benefits.

The advantages of retail kiosks for horeca businesses
There are several, different benefits from installing a totem kiosk in a bar or fast-food restaurant. Customer waiting times is tangibly reduced, which encourages a bigger consumer flow; it is no longer necessary to dedicate staff to collecting orders, and it therefore possible to save on human resources, or to increase the number of employees dealing with creating and delivering orders.

Data show that by using the totem kiosks, orders tend to be larger. The fact of having the full menu in front of you and being able to order anything with just a simple click brings consumers to order more products, maximizing company revenue. It should also be remembered that using the retail kiosks is actually a moment of entertainment for customers.

Digitalization of the Italian catering industry
We have been saying for years that digital transformation is an inevitable, vital process for companies in any sector. In most cases, however, Italian companies in the catering sector seem to believe that this arguments does not apply to them: very often, restaurants limit themselves to using an ERP to speed up accounting and to digitalize commands, but go no further.  Digitalization of the Italian catering industry is, therefore, still at minimum levels.

How much is this influencing the extremely high closure rate of restaurants and cafes? Difficult to say. Yet, there is no doubt: new technologies, if integrated in the right way, can be a considerable competitive tool. Self ordering in store, by using the totem kiosk or possibly by using an app on a smartphone, is just the tip of technological development in modern-day restaurants, to satisfy customers more and to reduce staff and operational management costs.

We must not forget that using retail kiosks allows us to collect more information about users, and therefore to understand their actions better, guaranteeing an improved customer loyalty process. This new digital food trend, therefore, can be seen as real, strategic leverage for increasing customer numbers, and thus restaurant turnover.