If you own a pizzeria or are thinking about opening one, there’s lots of encouraging news. According to the online pizza trade journal, PMQ:
- Pizza is the fastest-growing segment of all fast-casual restaurants.
- Consumers are now spending as much money eating out as they do eating at home.
- Total pizza sales in the U.S. topped $45 billion in 2018.
- Independent pizzerias earned $18.5 billion in sales (41% of total sales) in 2018.
- Independent pizzerias experienced a 2.65% increase in sales in 2018 compared to 2017. (Chain stores increased sales by 5.83%.)
What are the most profitable pizzerias doing to earn more sales?
For starters, they are marketing their restaurant for 2019 and beyond by doing the following:
- Building a robust presence on review sites, and frequently monitoring and quickly responding to customer reviews.
- Increasing web rankings using best-practice search engine optimization (SEO) techniques, such as including keywords, blogs, videos, online menus, etc.
- Submitting profiles on multiple digital food-specific platforms.
- Using remarketing techniques such as email marketing.
- Rewarding loyal customers.
Increasing Pizzeria Efficiency With POS Software
But even if your pizzeria has a great social media presence and entertaining YouTube videos not to mention a spiffy-looking website, there’s no guarantee you will rake in the dough (pardon the pun).
Perhaps it’s not shocking news to hear that poor customer service is one of the leading reasons customers do not come back to a restaurant. Nonetheless, many restaurant owners use antiquated ways to process orders.
POS + Pizza = Speedier Slices
Why is a POS system a vital piece of a pizza restaurant’s success? By and large, it’s because these days customers want fast service. Let’s say your pizzeria rings up sales with an electronic cash register. An employee writes down the order on a ticket and walks it over to the kitchen.
Compare that to a modern pizzeria where a customer walks up to the counter and the order is processed by a tablet. The order is instantly seen in the kitchen on another screen. No time is wasted transmitting the order from counter personnel to pizza chef. Sales are increased. Customer wait time is reduced.
Know what’s selling, offer specials on what isn’t
Having a modern POS accomplishes far more than delivering speedier slices. A POS offers sales analytics. Why is this important? Let’s say you believe, as PMQ reported, that the president of Iceland, who in 2017, created a social media stir by declaring that pineapple pizza should be outlawed, is dead wrong. Hawaiian pizza, you believe, is as American as apple pie. So you order lots of canned pineapple slices and ham.
But to your surprise, your inventory room has dozens of cans of expired pineapple. Your all-too-spread-thin manager failed to take stock of inventory. If you have a high-quality POS, there are no inventory surprises. And if you see, for example, that Hawaiian slices are moving slowly in the heart of winter, you can offer discounts on it to help it sell better. You can also see what at what time of day sales are slowest and run happy hour specials during that time.
Moreover, if your POS is cloud-based, you can access pizza sales stats from anywhere that has WIFI connection. In addition, you can also make real-time menu changes without having to be at your physical location.
Use Your POS to Reward Your Best Customers
In the days before the advent of modern POS systems, to reward customers, restaurants often used punch cards. (Buy 10 slices, get the 11th free.) There’s nothing wrong with keeping it old school. However, a POS is better for increasing sales because you can use it for an even more robust loyalty system. For example, when a customer is at the register, you can offer an incentive (free slice or 10% off their order) to enter their email address and phone number on a tablet. Once the customer’s info is registered in the POS, you can then send text messages to their phone or emails letting them know how many points they have accumulated and when they have accrued enough points to cash in on a free slice.
Integrate POS with online ordering
The most successful pizzerias offer online ordering. You may not have the available capital to pay a programmer to design an app for your pizzeria a la Domino’s Pizza chain (which offers 10 different ways to order pizza online). However, you should at least offer online ordering through your own website and/or a 3rd party ordering website. State-of-the-art POS software seamlessly integrates with online ordering. After offering online ordering for several months, you can use your POS to easily analyze what percentage of your orders are taken online. If you notice that it’s a significant percentage, you may want to take a page from Domino’s playbook and invest in other ways for your customers to order online.
Want to sell more pizza? Contact us today for a POS demonstration.