By Star Micronics
Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020, the restaurant and retail industries have gone through a technology renaissance, changing and updating their point of sale (POS) solutions to meet new consumer demands. But after two years of rapid upgrading, the technology trends are shifting focus again, moving from simply replacing outdated technology to getting ahead of the curve and futureproofing one’s business.
Keeping up with rapidly changing IT trends is more than most retailers and restaurateurs can manage internally. As a result, they’re turning to providers who can keep them up to date and offer all of the features they need, which can be done most efficiently with a single, integrated POS solution. Here’s why single-suite POS providers are a rising technology trend for 2022 and how they contribute to the other prominent trends.
1. Prioritizing Single-Suite Providers
The pandemic has brought about many changes, from unprecedented supply chain issues to the rise of virtual support teams. Because of these shifts, we predict 2022 will be the year of the single-suite POS solutions providers. These comprehensive solution suites make it easy to simplify IT, with just one provider handling hardware, software, and IT support.
This cohesiveness eliminates jumping around for technical support when systems act up. No more going back and forth between hardware and software providers who just point fingers and displace blame. Plus, all of your solution components will be fully compatible and integrated.
By utilizing a single suite provider for your retail or restaurant tech stack, you can save money with special offers and bundles, take advantage of their marketing strategies, and get consistent help from a team with a complete understanding of your POS solution inside and out.
2. Utilizing SaaS Models
Another significant technology trend that we are seeing sweep both the restaurant and retail industries is the use of the Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) model. What originally started as a way to keep more cash on hand during uncertain times has quickly become the new normal, as increasing numbers of suppliers and resellers have begun utilizing these business models.
The annual growth rate of the SaaS industry is projected to surpass 17% in 2022. With the industry generating over $145 billion in 2021 and expected to reach over $171.9 billion in 2022, our experts don’t foresee this business model disappearing anytime soon.
The SaaS model allows single-suite POS solutions providers to easily expand their portfolios and offer all the solutions businesses need with minimal investment and risk. And again, such providers can ensure that a retailer’s or restauranteur’s desired software is compatible with their hardware.
3. Creating Connected Work Environments
Advanced and stress-free integrations paired with cloud technology have created ultra-connected workspaces. For restaurants especially, now more than ever, it’s easy to connect your front- and back-of-house operations and get all of your hardware and software working together to move operations forward efficiently.
For instance, think of a traditional connected restaurant:
- Your hostess seats a table. Their dining experience begins when you select which table they will sit at on the POS.
- Once they order their meals, a waiter or waitress enters their order into a mobile POS solution. The order then appears as a digital ticket on the kitchen display system (KDS), or a ticket is printed straight to the kitchen.
- Once customers are ready to pay for their meal, the receipt is printed at the nearest POS station or available at the table, thanks to a mobile POS or kiosk.
- Upon paying, customers are offered the chance to enroll in a loyalty program by entering an email or phone number, which will allow them to receive automated offers from your POS marketing system.
Not only have traditional connected kitchens been improved, but in 2022 we expect them to expand, incorporating elements such as online ordering, self-service kiosks, digital signage management, programmatic advertising, and more.
There are many ways to set up a connected work environment, from POS to printers and cash drawers. Your entire restaurant tech stack can be integrated, speeding up operations and keeping your team moving efficiently. A single-suite provider can ensure that all system components work together seamlessly.
4. Profiting With Ghost Kitchens And Virtual Brands
The ghost kitchen concept flourished in 2021, providing budding restauranteurs with an excellent opportunity to enter the industry. With local and national brands such as Guy Fieri’s Flavortown Kitchen, Mr. BeastBurger, HotBox by Wiz, and more finding great success, it would only make sense that ghost kitchen popularity will continue to rise. Our experts have seen higher demand for kitchen display systems that integrate with online ordering platforms and label printers, thanks to these entrepreneurs creating a cohesive work environment. Given the ghost kitchen’s low-cost barriers for entry, less staff needed on hand, and high growth opportunities, we expect to see brands increase their investments in this arena, allowing them to keep costs down, protect the brand, and maximize their labor force.
The challenge will be for brands to deliver a consistent experience with each operating model across their menu, pricing, promotions, and customer service. It is also essential to ensure that the brand, product, packaging, and standards are uniform. This consistency is made easier with connected work areas and a centralized POS solution from a single-suite provider.
Choose The Right Partner To Leverage These Trends
At Star Micronics, our experts are ready to embrace the technology trends in 2022 and prepare for the next dynamic tech shift coming our way. We have already worked to get ahead of the curve by becoming your go-to single-suite provider for the ultimate retail or restaurant tech stack. Contact us today if you are ready to work with an industry-leading single-suite provider of innovative POS solutions.