4 Tech-Driven Tactics for Restaurant Growth and Longevity

Most people think the hardest part of being a restaurateur is creating a successful concept, but the real challenge lies in sustaining restaurant growth once there has been some initial momentum. After independent restaurant operators prove their concepts, open more locations, and enter new markets, the tricky part is then figuring out how to duplicate the concept and deliver a consistent experience at scale.

When even large chains like Sweetgreen are struggling to create sustainable business models while expanding, what’s a smaller multi-unit operator to do? Fortunately, technology can supercharge your restaurant expansion strategy and make it sustainable.

4 Ways to Use Technology to Sustain Restaurant Growth

Future-proof, automation-focused technology may be the key to growing your restaurant empire at a pace you can keep up with. Here are several ways technology can help sustain restaurant expansion.

1. Use Tech That Fosters Simplicity, Not Complexity

Restaurateurs often think that adding new solutions makes operations more complicated; but the right tech should actually simplify operations.

For example, adding a digital staff scheduling solution can seem so much more complicated than simply writing down the staff schedule each week. Why reinvent the wheel when you’ve been doing things the same way for years?

Because your recipe for success may not be sustainable when you begin managing multiple locations. As you scale, scheduling staff digitally can automate much of the process for you, and allow staff to easily make changes themselves – all of which translates to fewer headaches for management.

Fortunately, most restaurant tech solutions are designed with familiar, intuitive interfaces and come with training resources, which will help employees catch on quickly. When you open brand new locations, you can train staff on these new systems from the start. The sooner you implement processes that make operations more efficient, the more time and resources you’ll save as the business grows

2. Find Solutions That Open Up New Revenue Streams

The best way to sustain restaurant growth is to find new opportunities for business expansion. That doesn’t just mean using data to identify where to open your next location. It means using technology to explore untapped revenue streams at your existing locations to bring in more profits.

An online ordering system, for example, can open your business up to a whole new set of customers who are looking for takeout and delivery. According to TouchBistro’s State of Restaurants in 2023 Report, 25% of restaurants’ business is done via online ordering platforms. If each of your restaurants generates $50,000 in monthly revenue and you have 10 locations, introducing online ordering could generate an extra $1.5 million in revenue each year.

Think about other ways to introduce new revenue streams to your business. For example, you could sell branded merch and non-perishable food items in stores and online, or even launch catering services.

3. Prioritize Tech That Helps Automate Everyday Tasks

You might think you should focus on flashy new restaurant tech like AI order recommendations or drive-thru voice assistants to bolster restaurant expansion, but these solutions aren’t always as impactful as more sensible solutions that take everyday tasks off your plate.

For example, using payroll software to speed up payday processes may not be as exciting as a burger-flipping robot, but the time saved on admin each week will give you back more time overall. If you have a limited budget for implementing tech at your restaurants, prioritize solutions that automate the most time-consuming, repetitive tasks.

Even something as simple as choosing a POS that lets you add QR codes to receipts so diners can pay from their phones can make a big difference. Diners don’t have to wait for a server to run their card or make change, which can improve table turnover times. As a result, servers are free to focus on more meaningful tasks, like answering questions or providing recommendations.

4. Make Future-Proof Solutions Part of Your Restaurant Expansion Strategy

If you’re already focused on scaling your business, you should choose tech that will continue fueling your restaurant growth strategy,equipped to handle your changing needs as you scale. In other words, make decisions based on where you anticipate the business will be in the future, not just where it is today.

For example, choose the best restaurant POS that can support a dozen future locations, rather than just the three you already have. Look for a reservation system that will cross-promote sister locations when the venue customers had in mind is booked solid. Implement a loyalty program that can incentivize customers to visit other locations.

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With an intentional restaurant growth strategy and the right technology, you can scale your business from one location to an empire. TouchBistro all-in-one POS and restaurant management system has multi-location solutions that can support you along the way.