How to Build a Restaurant Menu App for Your Business

Technology is revolutionizing every single aspect of how we conduct business. Restaurants are no exception, but many restaurant owners haven’t yet caught up with the times. Currently, only 22% of restaurant owners are using a restaurant menu app.

Some of the benefits of using a restaurant menu app include:

  • Presents your menu in an attractive way
  • Regularly updated to reflect your stock
  • No printing costs for updated menus
  • Reduces pressure on staff with in-app ordering
  • Accurate orders
  • Avoids billing errors
  • Increased brand loyalty
  • Offer special rewards to loyal customers

With customer-centric marketing being so important in today’s business world, focusing on delivering a world-class customer experience and an exceptional brand image have never been more important.

To help you make the most of this trend, we’ll teach you how to build a shiny new restaurant menu app of your very own!

How To Build A Restaurant Menu App

Having a dedicated app for your restaurant helps your business stand out from the imitators, like you can see with the restaurants in Grapevine TX.

Follow these steps to help think through your restaurant app. It’ll make the design process that much easier.

Decide On An Appearance

Customers absolutely CAN and DO judge apps by their appearance. Deciding on a visual identity for your restaurant menu app is the first step in launching your online culinary empire.

Spend some time thinking about your visual branding. This will help you decide on the design elements to amplify those impressions to your customers.

The logo should be the first thing you design for your restaurant app. It’ll help clarify your brand image. It’ll also solidify aesthetic decisions like a color scheme that will be important at every stage of the app design process.

If you’re creating an app for a pre-existing restaurant, your restaurant menu app should remain consistent with the rest of your visual branding. This enhances customer loyalty and lets them know what to expect.

Decide On A Programming Language

Once you’ve settled on a visual identity for your restaurant app, you’ll need to decide on the programming language to implement it.

Some popular programming languages for mobile apps include:

  • HTML5
  • Objective-C
  • Swift
  • C++
  • C#
  • Java

Not all programming languages are created equal. Some of these languages will be better suited for iOS. Others will be better for a web-based app.

Commenting fully on each programming language for mobile development is beyond the scope of this article. Do some due diligence before beginning app development to make sure you settle on the language that will best suit your needs.

Include Your Info

The #1 reason customers look up restaurants on Google is for practical information like store hours, directions, or to check if it’s open. Make sure you include that information on your restaurant menu app, as well.

One of the joys of featuring a custom app is the ability to control how that information is presented. Custom graphic design makes our restaurants seem more original and authentic. Considering that 78% of consumers find companies that create custom content are more trustworthy than those that create generic content, you simply can’t overlook the opportunity to broadcast your restaurant’s unique identity.

Show Off Your Menu

Of course, one of the main reasons to feature a restaurant menu app is the ability to show off your delicious food in all of its glory.

Hosting your menu in a custom restaurant app makes it easy to show off daily specials and seasonal dishes. You can even reach your customers when they’re offline via Push Notifications.

Incorporate Mobile Ordering

Huge restaurant chains like Domino’s handle up to 50% of their online ordering through a restaurant menu app. It increases order accuracy, as well as freeing up your employees to do other things.

Restaurant menu apps are also a great opportunity to upsell products, like offering a deal on a larger size. You can also offer special promotions and pairings that your customer might not otherwise have known about.

Mobile ordering also allows you to put high-quality photos of your food in front of your customers. They’re more likely to purchase an item that they can see.

Offer Rewards

Increasing brand loyalty is another of the main incentives to feature a custom app is to capture your customer’s loyalty. Many independently-owned restaurants don’t have the resources to match the corporate competition. They’re stuck using archaic technologies like punch card programs. Restaurant apps can level the playing field.

It’s incredibly easy to keep track of loyalty programs using an online app. Keep track of your customer’s purchases and offer reward points for repeat business. These programs are some of the best methods for producing repeat business. They can also offer a goldmine of information for your marketing department.

Offer Coupons And Discounts

Offering coupons and discounts is a great way to encourage your customers to download your app. Offer an exclusive discount for first-time users as a way to get them involved. Continue to roll-out discounts to keep customers engaged and coming back to your app.

Coupons and discounts are also a great way to re-engage occasional customers. Nothing is more enticing than the words ‘50% Off’, no matter who you are.

Combining It All

Many of the benefits of using a custom app are available in other online channels as well. A mobile app brings them all together in one bright, shiny, attractive package.

Many of the most popular online restaurant sites can be integrated into mobile apps using plugins, as well. It’s never been easier for a restaurant to feature a custom app even with limited technical knowledge.

Mobile apps for restaurants combine the best of traditional restauranteering with the best of what technology has to offer. They let you show off your restaurant in the best possible light, with high-quality visual branding. They emphasize outstanding customer service by allowing your employees to focus on what’s important. It’s truly a bright new world for high-tech dining.

Ready To Find Out How A Custom App Can Help Your Business?

Mobile marketing isn’t going anywhere. The number of smartphone users is projected to surpass 5 billion by 2019. Check out the rest of our Mobile App articles and learn how to stay ahead of the curve!