Like most industries, the restaurant industry has had its fair share of ups and downs. For instance, according to Statista, the restaurant industry had the lion's share of food spending in the U.S (51%), but this was reduced to 45% of spending during the pandemic. The good news is that the restaurant industry is finally bouncing back. In this article, we analyze the current trends in the growing restaurant industry and what's next.
Technology Is Making Headway
Restaurant owners are increasingly becoming aware of the importance of incorporating technology into their operations. This is essential because digital transformation can lead to a lot of positives for tech-savvy restaurant owners. For instance, according to data from the McKinsey Global Institute, organizations that are data-driven are more likely to attract customers, retain those customers, and become more profitable by a long shot. Additionally, according to Tripadvisor, over 90% of restaurant industry diners in the U.S. prefer to check out online reviews when choosing a restaurant.
This indicates that more and more restaurant owners should work towards establishing an online presence and having a website. They should also focus on adopting software that can easily be integrated into restaurant operations to streamline every process and make the organization more functional. Embracing technology translates to a better customer experience, fewer losses, less labor, and more profitability. Therefore, it can be said that technology is one of the top factors spurring the growth of the restaurant industry.
Convenience Is the Name of the Game
Today, more and more people are enjoying the convenience that comes with living in a fast-paced world. Restaurants are generally poised to realize more growth because they not only sell food to customers, but they also sell convenience. For instance, according to Juniper Research (2021), the cashless payment system has now become a popular option, and more and more people are taking advantage of QR code payments. Data from Research and Markets also shows that the market for restaurant point-of-sale (POS) in the United States is anticipated to grow.
Additionally, according to Deloitte, 70% of consumers prefer online orders and off-premise delivery, and there are many people who have some kind of app that they prefer for digital online ordering. The numbers don't lie since it indicates that the restaurant industry is doing everything right to keep growing. According to IBIS World, the Fast Food Restaurant Industry is expected to increase by approximately 15%. Similarly, according to Statista, the full-service restaurant industry has a revenue of over one trillion dollars which is expected to grow.
There's a Need For More Labor
The restaurant industry is experiencing growth, so it's to be expected that there might be some labor shortages. The good news is that this is the perfect opportunity for restaurant owners to have a vested interest in their employees. There's a need for better business models where restaurant workers are a valued part of the company. Such an environment is better equipped to attract restaurant workers that go above and beyond for the organization, whether they're servers, cooks, or other restaurant workers.
Future restaurant business models should incorporate different kinds of service models and diner experiences, all of which are spearheaded by a thriving workforce. The truth is that restaurant workers have the power to make or break the company's brand. Therefore, as most restaurant owners attempt to navigate the labor shortages, they are forced to rethink their approach to employees.
Sustainability Is Becoming More Popular
Sustainability is a huge topic in many industries, and the restaurant industry is not exempt from society's demands in this regard. Hence, you find that restaurant owners are looking to run their businesses in a more sustainable manner. This is not only for the good of the environment, but it can also boost growth. Diners like to know that their favorite restaurant is operating in a way that minimizes the impact on the environment. That's why you notice that some restaurants that want to shrink their carbon footprint have introduced sustainability measures using locally grown produce, composting food waste, recycling, and using more environmentally friendly packaging.
Overall, the future looks bright for the restaurant industry even though it might have suffered some setbacks after the pandemic. Restaurants have always been a big part of the food culture in any city, so it's good news that the industry is flourishing. If you're planning to explore new restaurants in New York City, don't forget to check out Mezcali in the heart of the Financial District!