Restaurant Startups

Trends For Restaurant Startups In 2023

The COVID-19 pandemic altered our dining habits. People were first limited to their houses and had to rely on food delivery services to get their favourite restaurant meals. After economies had fully recovered, food establishments had to create safety procedures that encourage sanitation and physical distance. As civilizations strive for normalcy in the face of the ongoing pandemic, some of these changes are certain to persist. The use of technology, such as Restaurant Startups management software, and safety precautions, are foremost among them.

According to a study, it takes 66 days on average for an action to become a habit (Healthline, 2019). The pandemic has been dining with the world’s population for almost two years and counting. As a result, some behaviours have evolved into brand-new customs among restaurants and customers.

The most recent trends emphasise preserving or advancing these techniques. Along with those, a change in menu items and portions is also anticipated.

 The most recent Restaurant Startups software developments 

Restaurant Startups

1. The New Standard for Ordering Is Contactless

The key to protecting diners from COVID-19 is limiting face-to-face encounters, which is why some Restaurant Startups have chosen to go contactless. The most popular method of minimising human interaction is contactless ordering. Restaurants approach it in a variety of ways, from ordering through a website or mobile app to accessing the menu via a QR code that can be scanned. Some people even use technology when ordering both payments.

Contactless ordering gives clients piece of mind in addition to keeping dining safe. 81% of consumers believe it makes them feel safer, and 82% believe the same about contactless payments (Datassential, 2020). As a result, there is now a huge demand for contactless operations, and many eateries have risen to the occasion.

According to a recent Square research, 94% of US eateries accept contactless payments (Square, 2021). And its adoption had a favourable impact on operations.

The use of digital menus, according to 78% of restaurants, has many advantages. Equal numbers of diners like placing their orders via QR codes.

We may anticipate that services will get better as contactless methods become more prevalent. After all, the main area where diners want to see more technology used is in the ordering and payment process, with 52% of adult consumers requesting it (National Restaurant Association, 2021). This is more desired than better customer service (51%) and more practical takeout and delivery choices (49%).

2. Customers Want Delivery Options for Food

One of the most important Restaurant Startups developments during COVID is food delivery. Fast food establishments heavily relied on it, and their full-service competitors were also required to provide meal delivery services. As a result, the industry for food delivery services worldwide is now estimated to be worth over $150 billion, more than three times what it was in 2017 

In 2021, McKinsey. Additionally, following the start of COVID-19, revenues via digital ordering systems increased by an astounding 313%. (Paytronix, 2021).

Along with increased sales, food delivery apps’ user bases also expanded significantly. The number of US users has climbed from 36.4 million in 2019 to an estimated 44.1 million in 2021 and is expected to reach 53.9 million by 2023. (eMarketer, 2020). For an increasing number of consumers, food delivery has virtually replaced dining out.

Consumer behaviour has also been affected by the popularity of meal delivery to go digital. 44% of adult consumers place delivery orders while 57% read restaurant menus online (National Restaurant Association, 2021).

Additionally, at the height of the epidemic, first-time customers placed 65% of all orders (Paytronix, 2021). This allows eateries to supply special food packages shortly. Full-service restaurants will make the meal delivery option a crucial part of their business operations in the meanwhile.

3. After COVID, curbside pickup became the norm

Not all facets of the Restaurant Startups industry have seen significant expansion, including food delivery. All around the world, but especially in North America, curbside pickups have become the standard method of placing food orders. If we look at the figures, at the peak of COVID-19, North American curbside collection utilisation increased by 190%, compared to the global average growth of 159%. (Astound Commerce, 2021). Its growth has exceeded those of other methods of obtaining food.

From a business standpoint, curbside pickups and click-and-collect purchases sold for an astounding $72.5 billion in the United States alone in 2020. (Retail Brew, 2021). The convenience and adaptability of curbside pickup are two factors in its popularity.

It can be adopted by any retailer from any business, including the food and beverage industry, without incurring significant costs, especially delivery costs. Customers can pick up their orders later at a time and place that works for them. In contrast to actual retail deliveries, a curbside pickup is a guaranteed delivery.

Given the popularity of this purchasing option, click-and-collect revenues in the US are anticipated to reach $140.96 billion by 2024. (eMarketer, 2021). With 43.7% of the top 245 merchants offering the mode of service, it has also been widely adopted (Digital Commerce 360, 2021).

The hit her to unassuming curbside pickup option is now a proven moneymaker thanks to these encouraging numbers supporting its viability. It will continue to exist for a while.

4. Use of Smart Technology in Restaurants

Despite recent improvements in light of COVID-19’s impending arrival in 2020, the US restaurant business still has a 7.5% unemployment rate (CNBC, 2021), significantly higher than the 4.8% national average.

In addition to the paucity of employment opportunities, many workers also lack the will to work because COVID-19 is still in effect and unemployment payments are greater. Many restaurants used smart technology to keep their operations operating to address this worry, which was a wise decision.

According to recent restaurant trend statistics, nearly three out of four restaurant owners think that smart technology can help solve the labour shortage (Square, 2021). Additionally, almost two out of three business owners claim that having an automated system fills in any holes in the processes for online ordering.

Orders rise when operations are efficient, as was the case for Blaze Pizza, which saw a 150% increase in online orders following a tech upgrade (QSR, 2019).

Given the advantages of smart technology, 32% of restaurants believe they may require additional technology (Beekeeper, 2021). After all, businesses can digitise in-store and online orders, speed up process times, and keep an eye on personnel, among many other things, thanks to the wide variety of restaurant management tools that are accessible.

Also popular among diners is smart restaurant technology. 79 per cent of them prefer online kiosks over having their orders processed by a real waiter (Square, 2021). Additionally, 17% of customers have used tablets to place in-store orders, while 18% of diners utilise mobile payments to pay for their meals (National Restaurant Association, 2021).

In other words, anything that helps both producers and consumers will eventually become a long-term fix.

5. Dark Kitchens

The prevalence of food deliveries gave rise to the ghost kitchen idea, which is becoming more and more popular among chefs and restaurant owners. In these businesses, food for food deliveries is prepared by several brands in a communal complex.

By concentrating more on servicing in-store customers, restaurants with ghost kitchens may be able to cut down on wait times and order mistakes. As a result, it has garnered considerable worldwide traction.

With an astounding annual growth rate of 12%, the $43.1 billion cloud kitchen market is expected to reach $71.4 billion in value by 2027. (Valuates Reports, 2021).

Because ghost kitchens are dependent on food delivery applications, the remarkable estimate says a lot about how popular meal deliveries are. The Asia Pacific region has the largest growth rate among all regions, and it is a phenomenon that is occurring globally.

Ghost kitchens are anticipated to obtain a sizable portion of the food service sector by 2030, especially 50% of drive-through, 50% of takeout, and 35% of ready meals (PDFCOFFEE, 2020). Additionally, by 2025, it’s anticipated that 21% of the US restaurant sector would be made up of ghost kitchens (CBRE, 2021).

Restaurant Startups

6. Better Alternatives

It is only natural for diners to seek out healthier food in a culture that is still plagued by a virus.

Sadly, not everyone considers restaurant cuisine to be healthy. In the US, 40% of diners think that restaurant food is less healthy than the food they would prepare at home (The Hartman Group, 2021). As a result, in 2020, 32% of consumers adopted healthier eating practices (International Food Information Council, 2020).

The popularity of plant-based foods increased in part as a result of this. Sales of these items increased 2.5 times more quickly from 2018 to 2020 than food sales as a whole (Good Food Institute, 2021). In turn, some eateries have reacted to the need for healthier menu offerings. One such instance is the unexpected 149% rise in the availability of fermented foods on restaurant menus in 2020. (Upserve, 2020).

It’s interesting to note that another justification for restaurants being required to serve healthier food has less to do with health and more to do with cost.

The cost of “unhealthy” goods has increased, with processed poultry (27.4%), beef (41.4%), pig (32.7%), and fat and oils (42.2%) leading the way (National Restaurant Association, 2021). Food establishments are expected to sell meals with more reasonably priced ingredients now that returns haven’t yet reached pre-pandemic levels.

The strategy to eat healthily also aligns with another issue that remote workers frequently encounter: a dearth of physical activity. They are more likely to gain weight due to their sedentary lifestyle, which can increase their risk of developing major illnesses.

7. The comprehensiveness of Food Options

Food items from different cuisines are frequently included on the home screens of food delivery apps, especially when there are special offers.

As a result, individuals started to be interested in certain foods, even if they weren’t typically craving them before the pandemic. Here is where ethnic cuisine comes into play. For instance, Middle Eastern and Pan Asian cuisines have recently attracted notice and may be popular in 2022. Instead, eateries might increase the number of ethnic cuisines on their menus.

Mexican cuisine was the most popular in 27 US states in 2020, followed by Chinese cuisine in 22 states and Thai cuisine in 2 states (Chef’s Pencil, 2020).

Chinese, however, ranked first in terms of search popularity, with a score of 64, ahead of Mexican (59), Italian (38), Thai (24), and Indian (59). (11). The popularity of these cuisines is thought to be a factor in how restaurants develop new menu items.

The growing trend of providing meal options that appeal to particular eating habits is another source of inclusive food options. Numerous diets have gained prominence in 2020, with plant-based diets garnering the attention of 22% of customers, followed by gluten-free diets (16%), ketogenic diets (15%), low-carb diets (14%), and vegan diets (13%) (International Food Information Council, 2020). As a result, customers would favour foods that fit the requirements of these diets. The amount of veggies and other natural elements in Vietnamese and Greek cuisine, for instance, is high.

Vietnamese and Greek cuisines, for instance, place a strong emphasis on vegetables and other natural components, but Japanese cuisine is renowned for its mouthwatering fish dishes.

8. Restaurant Operations that Respect the Environment

Being eco-friendly has been a popular trend in the restaurant business for a while, and in 2023, it’s expected to remain one of the most popular restaurant trends. Due to the increase in food deliveries, restaurants were forced to manufacture disposable containers rather than washable plates and glasses for their products. Due to this, domestic garbage increased by 30%. (Republic Services, 2020). Furthermore, landfills or the environment have received 60% of the 8.3 billion tonnes of plastic that have been manufactured since the 1950s (UN Environment Programme, n.d.).

Thankfully, the green movement has already begun as 23% of companies now value environmentally responsible operations as a result of COVID-19 (SmartBrief, 2020). Consumers also favour environmentally friendly methods, with 67% of them believing that recyclable packaging is crucial for products (Trivium Packaging, 2021). Younger customers make up a sizable portion of individuals who support green measures. 83% of young customers are prepared to pay more for environmentally friendly packaging.

Metal has the highest rate of recycling (64%), followed by glass (32%), liquid cartons (26%), and plastic (14%), for products used for food packing (Trivium Packaging, 2021). Accordingly, consumers will continue to buy metal straws and carton containers into the year 2022 and beyond.

Additionally, the availability of eco-friendly materials has been impacting customer purchases. Customers’ purchasing patterns were altered by two-thirds as a result of sustainable packaging (Food Dive, 2020). How so? 58% of consumers, according to research by Food Dive, are likely or very likely to purchase products with recyclable or reusable packaging.

Large menus are more expensive and result in more food waste. Smaller menus will be prevalent to control costs at a time when the global restaurant business is still recuperating from the pandemic. Along with greater cost savings, a smaller selection enables chefs to hone their skills and produce better food.

The food and beverage business places a lot of emphasis on quality. According to Toast research, 50% of customers ranked it as the primary reason they would return to a restaurant, surpassing consideration for value (31%), cleanliness and safety (43%), and menu alternatives (27%) (Toast, 2020). While visiting a restaurant again in person might not be feasible in some nations or places, these restaurant statistics can nevertheless be used to predict how customers will behave when ordering food online.

To keep prices down and profits up, restaurants would probably stick with fast-moving products and those with fewer, simpler components. Additionally, some items used in one dish are also used in another, minimizing waste and spoilage.

10. Increasing Use of Social Media

It makes the most sense for food companies to concentrate their social media marketing efforts given that restaurants and their patrons are turning to the virtual world for dining as a result of the pandemic. In response, 92% of restaurants plan to boost their community engagement initiatives, a key component of which is their social media presence (Square, 2021). 27% of visitors find restaurants via Facebook, 25% via social media in general, and 18% via Instagram (Toast, 2020).

In addition to Facebook, it is anticipated that restaurants will use Instagram more frequently. According to recent restaurant trends, 35% of millennial diners avoid food vendors with a poor Instagram presence (Social Media Today, 2020).

Additionally, after seeing an advertisement on Instagram, 50% of respondents expressed greater interest in a certain brand (Boston Hospitality Review, 2021). It just goes to prove that nowadays, spending money on enticing food photos is a good idea.

Fast-casual eateries would be smart to use Tik Tok, the most-downloaded app of 2021, for their promotions rather than Instagram. A recent MGH survey found that 36% of diners ordered or went to a restaurant after watching a TikTok video about the place (MGH, 2021). Additionally, 55% of users said they will visit a restaurant as a result of watching an alluring TikTok food video.

The Future of the Restaurant Startups Industry Will Be Digital

The COVID-19 outbreak, which altered how many businesses operate today—including the food and beverage sector—has been dubbed the “world’s most significant disruptor.”

In addition to continuing into 2023, the surge in food deliveries 2023 will encourage eateries to add or expand their delivery menus and packages. This trend has given rise to other innovations like curbside pickups and ghost kitchens, which both increase efficiency and cut expenses. Residential garbage has increased as a result of the rise in demand for delivered items, creating a demand for packaging that is environmentally friendly.

From contactless procedures to meal components, in-store eating will also see some modifications. To protect guests from COVID-19, restaurants are anticipated to use technology and add healthier options to menus. To maximize profits and reduce liabilities, meals will also be organized with cost-effectiveness in mind.

Therefore, to put it briefly, the most recent restaurant software trends and market data tap into the advantages of the digital sphere while keeping or developing new methods to keep us and the environment healthy. Since many of these have previously been successful for businesses, they are probably going to stick around even after the epidemic.

Technology has been created to improve a restaurant’s sales and ordering workflow in place of the digital world. These systems may also enhance customer service and employee management. In light of this, you might want to read our article on picking the finest point-of-sale system for restaurants.


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