How Retailers & Restaurants Can Go Digital Without Burning a Hole in Their Budget

Retailers and restaurant owners today are finding new ways to use emerging technologies in their businesses. While you may think of this as an expensive trend, there are ways that you can boost your business capabilities without sinking your budget. Focus on your online presence and ordering options to make your customers' lives easier and improve your bottom line.

Bolster Digital Ordering

Digital ordering starts with online options. If you have an eCommerce site, you should focus on making sure the design lets users move from any area to add items to their cart and move to checkout. Simple, streamlined navigation usually proves more effective than a fancy but cumbersome site. For restaurants, letting people add options or special instructions to orders can let you enhance your sales and help customers feel comfortable fitting their tastes or dietary needs.

Digital ordering includes more than just a website, though. An on-site kiosk can allow your customers to order at their own pace, and even boost your sales without having to add more employees who cut into your profit margins. A kiosk is a relatively inexpensive option that many of your customers will appreciate.

Leverage Social Media and Customer Data

This, of course, begs the question: How do you understand what your customers really want? Building out an interactive social media presence can give you access to a great deal of market research. Encourage your customers to follow you on social media. Give them incentives and discounts in exchange. The cost to your revenue will pale in comparison to the insights you can gain from asking questions and learning what your customers like and want.

Here, the more you genuinely connect with people, the more effective your presence becomes. Letting people respond to surveys and reaching out for opinions creates opportunities for people to talk about themselves. In turn, you can gather data that lets you know how you can better meet their desires and needs. It costs little and gives you effective data that you can leverage into business improvements.

Process Online and Contactless Payments

Finally, digital payments should serve as a critical component of your digital strategy. Customers today expect to be able to pay in a variety of ways. Point-of-sale payments still matter but processing online and mobile payments give people options and greater security with their payment information. Accepting secure contactless and mobile payments give further options that make some of your customers more comfortable.

Today's world presses more every day into the digital realm. Giving people ways to connect to you digitally has become less of a luxury and more of a necessity for competing today. Find ways to expand what you do, and you can build your customer base, your revenue, and your readiness for continued growth.

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How Retailers & Restaurants Can Go Digital Without Burning a Hole in Their Budget

About the Author

Tonya Skinner, AVP, Partner Acquisitions

Tonya is an ETA, CPP-certified payments professional with over 10 years of industry experience. Her deep understanding of sales at the partner, bank and merchant levels, along with a personal desire to help others meet their goals, has helped launch many successful careers.

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