How To Set Up An Online Ordering System For Your Restaurant
With the right online ordering platform, you can reach more customers and streamline restaurant operations. Here's how to get started with an online ordering system for your restaurant.
Most customers expect restaurants to offer an online ordering platform. Connecting an online ordering system to your POS system will help kitchen staff easily keep track of incoming orders. Keep reading for how to set up online ordering through your POS system, plus recommendations for the best POS systems with built-in online ordering features.
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How To Set Up Online Ordering For Your Restaurant
To set up online ordering for your restaurant, you have to create a menu, customize your online ordering site, choose takeout and delivery settings, route orders to POS and kitchen display devices, and connect to delivery services like DoorDash. You can also accept orders through your Google Business Profile and social media.
Most of the best restaurant POS systems guide you through the process step by step. Here’s a more detailed breakdown of what to expect and consider when you set up online ordering.
What To Look For When You Set Up An Online Ordering System
When setting up your online ordering system, consider pricing, takeout/delivery management, marketing possibilities, and inventory management features.
Online Ordering System Pricing
Your online ordering platform should not cost a lot in monthly or per-order fees. We recommend flat per-order fees or flat monthly subscription fees rather than order percentage fees because it typically works out better for restaurant owners. If you’re very strapped for cash, we recommend these free restaurant POS systems that include online ordering platform options.
To avoid third-party platform fees, push your customers to place orders through your restaurant website.
Takeout & Delivery Management
While paying for another software product like Deliverect, which aggregates all online orders from all sources to make order management easier, may seem unnecessary, this tool will help your kitchen and expo staff manage their time and energy and ensure orders are correct. If you can afford an order aggregator or you can find a POS system that includes built-in delivery platform integrations, we strongly recommend incorporating it into your restaurant management solution.
We also recommend that restaurants figure out whether to incorporate several KDS screens for different kitchen sections, use them as expo screens to simply put orders together, or just stick with kitchen tickets. KDS screens have their usage, but they must be configured correctly to be worth the expense.
We strongly recommend using marketing tools like a loyalty program, email and text marketing, a gift card program, and targeted discounts and coupons to get customers to order from your site and get repeat orders.
Many POS systems have built-in marketing features and integrate with several marketing/customer relationship management tools. If you keep on top of your marketing efforts, getting extra marketing tools will be worth it.
Restaurant POS systems with good inventory management include automated ingredient tracking that is synced with your POS so that when an order ingredient or modifier runs out, customers can’t choose that item or modifier. It should also track inventory from all ordering touchpoints, not just ones made directly through your POS.
We also recommend a POS system that allows servers and kitchen staff to manually 86 an item you run out of from the POS or KDS. In cases where inventory counts are off, this saves a lot of frustration for staff and customers trying to order.
The Bottom Line: Online Ordering For Your Restaurant
Setting up online ordering for your restaurant is a great way to gain exposure and give customers more choices about ordering from you, but you do have to pick the right software for your restaurant offering. If you’re not sure which restaurant POS is right for you, read up on more of the best POS systems with online ordering.