News Feature | November 15, 2013

Restaurant And Hospitality IT News For VARs — November 15, 2013

By Anna Rose Welch, associate editor

BSM-Chef in Restaurant

In this week’s news, analysts consider the future of NFC and a study shows creating loyalty programs that protect user privacy could benefit your customers.

NFC Technology Penetration Slow, But Potential Still Exists

John Torney for Mobile Commerce Press discusses the growth of near field communication (NFC) technology. Banks and network operators were most drawn to NFC technology with the belief adoption would grow. However, with the release of Apple products that didn’t include NFC, this technology’s penetration in actual devices has proceeded much more slowly than anticipated. Companies including Google Wallet, Isis, and MasterCard recently announced they will keep using NFC technology. However, these companies will be adding additional services, like QR code capabilities, to ensure a larger number of consumers can access each company’s services.

Analyst Says NFC Will Not Dominate The Mobile Wallet Space

Mobile Commerce Daily shares highlights from the “Mobile Payments: State of the Union” session at the Forrester Research Mobile Shopping Fall Summit. At the summit, analyst Denee Carrington said NFC will not be taking over the mobile wallet space. She says, “I am not bullish on NFC in the U.S. I think NFC has some great capabilities and will be adopted over time, I just don’t think the best use case for NFC is payments.” According to Carrington, the most valuable mobile wallets are omni-channel and work with any device.

Consumer Privacy Protection Will Help Your Customers’ Loyalty Programs

Grocery Headquarters features the results of a Mintel study revealing that privacy of personal information is a significant part of a consumer’s decision about whether or not to join a loyalty program. In fact, a third, or 32 percent of Americans believe privacy of personal information is a key attribute for any loyalty program. Similarly, 13 percent of consumers have expressed frustrations about needing to provide too much personal information during enrollment in the program. The study also shows that personalization and privacy — two important aspects of loyalty programs — are consistently at odds with one another.

Visitor Kiosk Solutions Replace Hotel Lobby Brochures

Bruce Smith for The Detroit News says interactive visitor kiosks are technological option for your hotel customers looking to replace brochures in lobbies. Currently, this technology has been implemented in hotels and other businesses in South Carolina and NYC. These large, touch screen kiosks enable visitors to view ads, make reservations, print out maps and menus, and purchase tickets to events. This technology enables advertisers to learn more about the demographics of the people viewing their ads and measure the demand for their products/events.

Restaurant Performance Index Continues To Decline

According to the National Restaurant Association, the Restaurant Performance Index (RPI) declined in September — for the fourth month in a row. Analysts attribute this decline to restaurant operators’ dampened outlook, in particular because of the government shut down and debt ceiling debates, and slower restaurant traffic. The RPI was down 0.3 percent in September to 100.2 from 100.5 in August. The Current Situation Index was 99.9 for September, down 0.7 percent from August when the level stood at 100.7. This is the first time in six months that the Current Situation Index has fallen below 100. Similarly, only 41 percent of restaurant operators reported same-store sales gains, compared to 53 percent who reported higher sales in August. Customer traffic levels also decreased, contributing to the increase in operators reporting declines in same store sales in September.

Restaurant And Hospitality IT New Roundup

According to Nation’s Restaurant News, the number of restaurant consumers posting photos on Instagram increased in the third quarter. The MomentFeed Index Restaurant Instagram Report reveals that more than half a million photographs were tagged at restaurant locations in the quarter. The report tallied consumer photos that were tagged to a specific restaurant location. MomentFeed’s whitepaper on Instagram frontrunners and implementation strategies can be found here.

According to new research from the NPD Group, all restaurant segments saw a 2 percent increase in restaurant visits on deals. Deals including “buy some, get some,” or a “two-for-a-deal-type” were the most utilized, increasing 14 percent over last year. Value menu visits were up 6 percent compared to last year, helping QSRs remain stable for the year ended August 2013.

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