How the restaurant business is booming with push notifications?

Did you know, American consumers spend 33% of their income on housing, 15.8% on transportation, and 12.6% on food. The ever-growing food and restaurant business has evolved drastically over a few years. With technology by the side, restaurant businesses have been adding value-added services like free online food delivery, 24×7 availability, and online table booking to their list.

The major web techs have made the businesses to come up with web and mobile app-based touch points that have consequently made these online services possible. Besides this, dedicated food ordering and restaurant aggregators have also joined the league.

Be it a restaurant owned application, a marketplace-based food delivery app, or an aggregation service, all of them are using a common tech without which the boom was unimaginable. It’s called push notifications service. A tech that has established a seamless communication channel for utility and marketing communications with the customers and potential prospects. With more than 88% of restaurants willing to pay for marketing, their investment in push marketing tools and services is quite considerable these days.

What enables push notifications for the restaurants?

They use push notifications in the same way a business use SMS or Email for marketing. However, the technology takes a different route to reach these businesses. There are two ways of enabling push notifications for a restaurant business:

We can introduce app-based push notifications to a restaurant business in two ways. One- we can develop a mobile app and integrate a push notifications service to it. Second–we can join a food delivery marketplace, which will use its push notifications features.  In both cases, restaurants use a highly profitable communication channel to boom their business. How? We will discuss it in the consequent part of the article.

They introduced web-based push notifications after the app push notifications. The limitations of app push notifications forced the restaurant owners to spend an extra amount on app developments. However, when web pushing was made available, the need for mobile apps to push the notifications was sorted. Now, we can just integrate a web push notification software and trigger notifications right from their website. We are no longer dependent on mobile apps to use this tool.

How food businesses are booming with push notifications?

Be it an app notification or the web push notification, restaurants use both the techs for a common aim of a seamless marketing channel. It doesn’t matter if you are pushing to your mobile app or website users. Ultimately, you want them to associate with your business. With this common aim, restaurants or food business are using push notifications in the following innovative ways-

Sending transactional alerts

The transactional alert is a way to deliver crucial and time-sensitive information to the users. These alerts are non-promotional, do not induce a conversion, but can boost customer loyalty over time. Restaurants use them to deliver important communications that users would like to stay updated with.

For example, below is a transactional alert from GrubHub to one of its user who has ordered from it.

This alert does not contain a conversion intent, neither it asks the user to perform an action. However, it has delivered a piece of crucial information that concerns the user.

A major proportion of users assume the restaurants or food delivery businesses to inform them of important things via push notifications. Please note that 84% of users across all platforms clear off the push alerts without reading them. It’s because they triggered the alerts with promotional content or information that is not required anymore. Truth is, transactional alerts get a low open rate because of the lack of conversion intent. However, they are still useful because they update the users and help to boost app-retention and customer loyalty.

Sending engagement alerts

As the name suggests, engagement push notifications fetch user attention and encourage them to take action or interact with the business. Simply, engagement push notifications use multiple aspects in the form of appealing texts and information that draw user attention. They aim at fulfilling a conversion goal and link directly to the ROI of your restaurant business.

The following engagement notification from a restaurant aggregator is a perfect example of this category.  It is not just informing the user, but also encouraging to tap on it at the same time.

Push notifications have been in the hype for a long time now. Brands, especially the food businesses are using them for getting an edge over rival apps and websites. However, not all push notifications from all businesses achieve similar success. It is because most of the marketers do not satisfy basic principles of push marketing and end up triggering notifications that backfire instead. This brings us to our next point. This is how wise businesses are tweaking their engagement notifications to get as much attention and make profits.

Promoting localized deals

Restaurants, food delivery apps, and aggregators use location-based push notifications to attract users in the locality. As this niche is critically a location dependent maneuver, push notification’s location-based segmentation and geo-fencing help businesses attract as many customers.

The intention businesses possess is pushing out location-specific deals and attract customers to the restaurants whenever they are hungry. Mobile apps and websites use app and web push notifications in support with different techs to target local customers.

For example, some push notification software and services allow location-based segmentation. Marketers create different segments of users falling in a particular location and send alerts relevant to the users in it.

Some restaurants use geo-fencing of popular locations or their locality to trigger location-specific notifications. These notifications are powered by iBeacon technologies of Apple. Mobile phones with corresponding apps receive automatic push notifications as soon as they come into contact with a fenced location. For example, a restaurant can send the following notification to a customer who has already ordered a burger. A restaurant can use this notification to up-sell more food items.

To sum up

Eventually, I would like to pinpoint some other reasons for the success of restaurants and food business with push notifications-

Relevancy– It does not matter how tempting the offer is, if it does not concern the user with relevant information, it is not valuable for him or her.

Timed– A poorly timed notification frustrates the users and induces mass opt-outs or app uninstallation. Business should know the perfect time to send a perfect notification.

Stand out A good notification stands out from the rest. It must possess the ability to draw attention by offering a unique proposition. Let it not just serve the purpose, but also build a relationship with the user.

Frequency– Notifications work best when triggered in strategic intervals. A wise business does not irritate its customers with notification bombardment. It maintains enough time gap between two notifications to let users read and react to the previous messages.

Using push notifications in the restaurant business is unlimited because not just mobile apps but also the websites can trigger them. Business can do a lot more and innovative stuff using push notifications marketing channel. They need to keep the best practices intact and don’t fall in the pitfalls of rouge stuff like spamming and bombardment of notifications.

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