According to a recent report mobile industry analyst Ian Hayes, fast food restaurants can learn from the successes and stumbles logged by competitors and other global food and beverage giants that recently went mobile with payment options.
Eighteen months ago, Starbucks launched its Square Wallet application at all 7,000 Starbucks stores in operation. But in 2013, Fast Company tested the service in two dozen locations across the US. In the worst examples cited, the Square service “did not work, and on average, it was buggy.”
Blame for these unpleasant experiences seemingly fell equally upon the underlying technology and poor employee training.
Regardless of a few initial stumbling blocks, mobile payment transactions are projected by Juniper Research to reach $1.3 trillion by 2017. And the food service industry will claim a large portion of this burgeoning market.
Today, not even 1 in 10 table service restaurants offer a mobile payment solution. But according to recent industry data presented by USA Today, 54% of U.S. restaurant owners say they’ll soon invest more in technology, specifically as it relates to credit and debit card paying customers.
“The next big phase of mobile payments adoption is the expansion of mobile credit card readers,” predicts Hayes. “Consumers are increasingly comfortable with these solutions at places like restaurants, where they can expedite the dining experience without compromising security or convenience.”
According to the New York-based analyst, consumer demand is driving unprecedented growth for mobile payment solutions providers like PayAnywhere, particularly among companies that provide delivery services.
“For companies providing these services,” PayAnywhere says on its official blog, “being equipped with PayAnywhere’s mobile point of sale solution can help ensure all items are accounted for and any last minute items can easily be purchased at the door.”
Ultimately, says Hayes, whether the transaction occurs at the door, in the drive-through, or on a mobile app, the traditional cash register is rapidly going the way of the dinosaur.
“Eventually, technology will render cash completely obsolete,” he predicts. “That’s why industries spanning retail to fast food are racing to adopt mobile payments technology. It is how everyone will one day pay for goods and services.”