Artificial Intelligence (AI) is changing the way we work, live, and interact with the world around us. The restaurant industry is no exception.
AI can provide restaurateurs with innovative tools to enhance their services, streamline their operations, and offer a better experience to their customers.
In this blog post, we will explore the world of AI in restaurants, provide examples of AI tools like ChatGPT and MidJourney, and offer 10 practical tips on how to utilize AI to boost your restaurant business.
What is AI?
AI, or Artificial Intelligence, is a type of computer technology that can think, learn, and solve problems like humans do. It helps businesses, including restaurants, by making tasks easier, faster, and more efficient.
For example, suppose you own a fast-food restaurant, and a customer leaves a negative review online, complaining about cold food and poor service. Instead of spending time crafting a response yourself, you can use an AI tool like ChatGPT to help.
Or another example, imagine you own a pizzeria and you’re struggling to respond to customer inquiries quickly. An AI tool like ChatGPT could help by automatically answering customers’ questions about your menu, operating hours, or delivery options. This allows you to focus on running your restaurant while the AI takes care of customer communication, saving you time and improving customer satisfaction.
In summary AI is like your personal assistant with many different skills that can help you in many different ways. AI is like a Swiss Army Knife. Let’s take a look at how it can help your restaurant.
AI tools for restaurants
Currently, there are two popular AI tools that you can easily implement in your restaurant:
ChatGPT. This is like having a conversation with an intelligent assistant that understands human language. You can chat with ChatGPT as if you’re talking to a person and ask it to perform tasks for you. It can help with various aspects of your restaurant, such as creating menu descriptions, answering customer inquiries, and crafting promotional content.
MidJourney. This tool is an image generator. You can ask MidJourney to create custom images for your restaurant, such as menu photos, promotional banners, or social media posts. It uses AI technology to generate visually appealing and relevant images based on your input and requirements.
Benefits of using AI in restaurants
Faster work and lower labour costs: AI can do tasks quickly, like answering questions or creating content, which saves you time and helps your restaurant run smoothly.
Better online presence: AI can help you manage your restaurant’s reputation on the internet by responding to reviews and creating engaging content for your website and social media. With better online presence and your own restaurant online ordering system you get more orders and increase revenue.
More customers: AI can help you create special offers and messages just for customers to encourage to order in your restaurant
Improved guest service: AI can help you understand what your customers want and provide them with better service, making them more satisfied.
Smarter decisions: AI can analyze information about your restaurant, like which dishes are popular, so you can make better choices for your business.
Get extra skills: AI can provide you with skills you never had a chance to acquire, learn, or buy. For example, it can help you with tasks like programming a website or executing marketing campaigns, even if you don’t have the expertise in those areas. This allows you to improve various aspects of your restaurant business without needing to invest time and resources in learning new skills.
Use the /imagine Command to ask AI (for example write /imagine pizza capriciosa and AI will generate this image for you)
10 tips how to use AI in your restaurant
1. Create a restaurant logo
AI tools can help you design a unique and eye-catching logo that represents your restaurant’s brand and concept. They can generate multiple options, allowing you to choose the one that best fits your vision.
How to generate restaurant logo with AI?
Use MidJourney. Example prompt: /imagine Pizzeria logo. Simple. Blue. Use California bridge
2. Create menu items images
AI-powered tools can generate realistic images of your menu items, ensuring they look appetizing and accurately represent the dishes you serve.
How to generate menu item image? Use MidJourney. Example prompt: /imagine Italian pizza taken out of the old oven
3. Create menu descriptions
AI can generate enticing and creative menu descriptions that highlight your dishes’ unique qualities, making them more appealing to potential customers.
How to create restaurant menu descriptions with AI?
Use ChatGPT. Example prompt:
4. Get menu ideas
AI can analyze your menu data, such as sales, ingredients, and customer preferences, to help you optimize the menu for maximum profit and customer satisfaction.
Prompt to ChatGPT: “Analyze and provide suggestions on how to optimize the menu at ‘Bamboo Bistro’ to increase customer satisfaction and profit. This is my menu: [you menu]”
5. Create promotions
AI can help you create promotion description and images to attract new customers. Use ChatGPT to generate promotion description and MidJourney to generate image.
6. Design SMS/Email/Push campaigns
AI can help you design and write engaging SMS, email, or push campaigns to keep your customers informed about your restaurant’s latest news, events, and offers.
How to create text message with AI? Use ChatGPT. Example prompt: “Write an text message promoting a special event called Mothers Day at our restaurant Pasta & Wine. Use max 160 characters. Don’t use special characters.”
7. Write website content
AI can assist you in writing engaging and informative website content that showcases your restaurant’s unique qualities and attracts customers.
8. Analyze customers reviews
AI tools can help you analyze customer reviews to identify trends, strengths, and areas for improvement.
By analyzing the data, you can make informed decisions to improve the overall customer experience.
How to analyze customers reviews?
Copy or download reviews from some period (eg. last month)
Prompt to ChatGPT: “Analyze the customer reviews of my restaurant and provide insights on the main trends and areas for improvement. This is my reviews: [your reviews]”
9. Write answers for customer reviews
AI can assist you in responding to customer reviews quickly and efficiently. By automating responses, you can save time and ensure each review receives a timely, personalized response.
How to to write answers for guests reviews with AI?
Prompt to ChatGPT: “Write answer for this review (max 3 sentences): [review]”
AI is huge innovation like personal computer, internet and smartphone
AI will change we live and work. It will change everything
Restaurants that will learn how to use AI get przewagę konkurencyjną na rynku
AI can help you create an attractive restaurant logo, write enticing menu descriptions, and generate realistic menu item images.
AI in restaurant can help you boost sales, cut labor costs and do some jobs 100x more faster
Overall, using AI in your restaurant can save time, improve customer satisfaction, and increase profits.
The rise of food delivery apps has significantly changed the way we order food. While these services offer convenience to customers, they also have a dark side.
Many restaurateurs are asking, “Do delivery apps hurt restaurants?” and “Why do delivery apps hurt local restaurants?”
In this blog post, we will discuss how third party ordering services like UberEats, GrubHub, and DoorDash can negatively impact restaurants and why opting for an alternative, like UpMenu, can be a better choice for your business.
How Third Party Ordering Services Hurt Restaurants
1. High Commission Fees
One of the primary disadvantages of third-party ordering services is the high commission fees they charge.
For example uber eats commission rate range from 15% to 30% of the order value, significantly cutting into a restaurant’s profits.
With already thin profit margins in the foodservice industry, these fees can make it difficult for restaurant owners to keep their businesses afloat.
2. Loss of Brand Identity
When customers order through third-party platforms, they interact with the platform’s brand, not the restaurant’s.
This can lead to a loss of brand identity, as customers associate their food delivery experience with the third-party service rather than the restaurant itself.
This is why restaurants should consider third-party delivery services as supplementary rather than their primary online sales channel.
Restaurants can incentivize customers to order directly from their websites by offering exclusive deals and promotions not available through third-party platforms.
This may include special discounts for first online order, free delivery, or loyalty programs that reward returning customers.
By providing these incentives, restaurants can encourage customers to bypass third-party services and order directly from their preferred establishments.
3. Focus on Customer Experience
To build a loyal customer base, it’s crucial for restaurateurs to focus on providing exceptional customer experiences.
This includes ensuring that food quality, packaging, and delivery meet or exceed customer expectations.
By prioritizing the customer experience and continually seeking feedback, restaurants can improve their offerings and encourage customers to return for future orders.
4. Optimize Delivery Operations
Restaurants can reduce their dependence on third-party ordering services by optimizing their own delivery operations.
This may involve hiring dedicated delivery staff, using technology to streamline the delivery process, or partnering with local courier services.
By providing reliable and efficient delivery, restaurants can encourage customers to order directly from their website, reducing the need for third-party platforms.
5. Leverage Local Marketing
Focusing on local marketing efforts can help restaurants reach their target audience and create a sense of community.
Participating in local events, partnering with nearby businesses, and utilizing local media outlets can all help to increase awareness of a restaurant’s brand and offerings.
By building strong connections within the community, restaurateurs can encourage customers to support their business by ordering directly from their website or visiting the establishment in person.
6. Communicate the Benefits of Direct Ordering
Educating customers on the benefits of ordering directly from a restaurant is essential for reducing the negative impact of third-party services.
Restaurateurs should communicate the advantages of direct ordering, such as better pricing, faster delivery times, and the ability to support local businesses.
By highlighting these benefits, restaurants can persuade customers to choose direct ordering over third-party platforms.
You should also promote your own ordering system by using QR code menu in-store.
7. Monitor Third-Party Platform Performance
While it’s essential to focus on strategies for reducing reliance on third-party ordering services, it’s also important for restaurateurs to keep an eye on their performance on these platforms. Monitoring customer reviews and ratings can provide valuable insights into areas that may need improvement. By addressing these concerns, restaurants can ensure they maintain a positive reputation on third-party platforms, even as they work to reduce their dependence on them.
High commission fees charged by third-party ordering services can significantly cut into restaurant profits.
Restaurants may lose brand identity and control over customer experience when using third-party platforms.
Valuable customer data may not be accessible to restaurants when orders are placed through third-party services.
Reliance on external platforms can leave restaurants vulnerable to changes in commission structures or platform priorities.
Using a platform like UpMenu allows restaurants to maintain control, preserve brand identity, and build stronger customer relationships for a more sustainable business model.
Build your own restaurant website and ordering system to save thousands of dollars on commissions.