The trend for ordering and paying via mobile technology in the hospitality sector has seen a sharp rise, the research found, with the number of consumers using their smartphones more than doubling in the past three years.
The report, which polled 5,000 people, revealed that 40% of 25 to 34-year-olds prefer to use their smartphone to order food and drink, and have items delivered to their table, rather than queue at the bar or wait for table service.
It also revealed that 67% of customers would spend more cash and buy more drinks if they could order from their mobile device, with 80% happy to pay via their smartphone using recognisable and trustworthy brands, such as PayPal, Barclaycard and Apple Pay.
The figures come as several large pubcos, including JD Wetherspoon and Mitchells & Butlers, have launched apps introducing frictionless payment and ordering to meet customer demand.
“The rise of smartphone technology over the past 10 years has changed the way in which we communicate, shop and pay for things,” said Zonal sales and marketing director Clive Consterdine.
“Our latest Go Technology report demonstrates a growing appetite from consumers to use smartphones as a digital wallet to order and pay for food and drink.
“These consumers clearly value the improved speed of service and avoiding the hassle of queuing at a bar or waiting for table service.”
Room for improvement
Consterdine said the hospitality sector is “opening its eyes” to the opportunity technology can bring to enhance the customer experience and drive sales but added there “is room for improvement”.
To encourage consumers to download an app, the Go Technology report shows that of those surveyed, 44% respond to regular offers and rewards.
CGA director Jamie Campbell said: “We are seeing real momentum of consumers growing in confidence when it comes to ordering and paying, so it’s a great time to be developing your offer in this space as this is only going to increase with more usage.
“Outside of the core functionality, these apps need to engage and give a reason to download, consumers don’t want or have space for apps they don’t use on their phone.”