Why Top Restaurants are Investing in Drive-Thrus (and How Raydiant and GDS Can Help)16 December 2021
During COVID-19, drive-thrus were having a moment. Now, nearing 2022, their continued popularity is showing its staying power. Top restaurant chains from McDonalds to Chipotle are investing in adding more drive-thrus, and elevating the overall drive-thru experience, with digital menu boards and other technology. In fact, the owner of Burger King, Popeyes, and other quick-service restaurants will be adding digital menus and contactless payment systems to 10,000 of their restaurants by 2022 alone.
Many restaurateurs are looking to follow suit, in an attempt to improve their customer experience, increase revenue, and stay competitive in the marketplace. If you’re one of those restaurateurs, we’ve got exciting news for you! Raydiant has paired up with digital screen technology giant Global Display Solutions (GDS) to offer a turnkey drive-thru solution— complete with hardware, screen, enclosure, and installation—powered by Raydiant’s menu management platform. Here’s a breakdown of what you can expect with Raydiant and GDS.
Outdoor-Rated, High-Brightness Screens for All Seasons
Don’t let anything get in the way of your drive-thru revenue: including hard-to-read signage that turns away customers. GDS offers high-brightness LCD screen technology, which is vibrant and easy to read in any light, even sunlit conditions. Rain or shine, your drive-thru menus will always be working for you. And since GDS offers outdoor-rated screens and hardware and enclosures made for all weather and temperature conditions, you can expect your screens to maintain their look and function for years to come.
A Menu Management Tool That Goes Where You Go
If you’re a Raydiant customer, you already know that our platform makes restaurant management easier in a lot of ways. First, it’s a cloud-based system that you can access from any device, whether you’re at your kitchen table, at your restaurant, or on the road. Any time you want to make a last-minute menu change at any or all of your locations, you can do it with a few clicks of your mouse. Think about it: any time you run out of an ingredient, add a promotional price, or change out your regular menus to happy hour or seasonal menus, you can do it all in one place—and from the phone in your pocket! This includes drive-thru menus, digital menu boards, promotional digital displays, and all other screens connected to the Raydiant system.
Menus You can Design to Match Your Brand
When it comes to branding, consistency is key. Your customers should recognize your brand at a glance, and this means using the same colors, branding, imagery, and overall aesthetic in your drive thru as you use in your dining room. Raydiant’s comprehensive platform includes easy drag-and-drop design tools to make your digital menu boards inside and your drive-thru menu boards outside look brand-centric. Use our design app, which offers over 275,000 designer templates, to create the look you want. Add your own food images, animations, colors, fonts, logos, and other branded material to make it your own.
Automated Menu Updates Made Easy with a POS Integration
As part of our large app marketplace, we offer a few POS integrations to streamline your back-end processes. Integrating your POS with your digital menu boards, inside and out, as well as your curbside delivery, takeout, and other service touch points ensures that your digital menus are always up to date with what’s available (and not showing what’s not—to the relief of frustrated customers everywhere who try to order off the menu, only to find that an item is no longer available).
The Power of a Positive Drive-Thru Experience
Overall, Raydiant and GDS offer a ready-to-go drive-thru solution for restaurateurs who not only want to get up and running, but who wish to elevate the drive-thru customer experience. What do we mean? Clear, easy-to-read menus that stoke a customer’s appetite with mouth-watering food imagery. Drive-thru menus that make it easy for staff to schedule, switch out, and update dayparting, seasonal, and promotional menus at a moment’s notice. It’s these little things that make the ordering process go quicker, the lines stay shorter, and your customers stay satisfied with a smooth drive-thru experience.
Noteworthy Drive-Thru News and Statistics
Wondering if adding a drive-thru option is worth it? Here are some recent news snippets and statistics that show drive-thru as the future of restaurant and fast-casual service.
The average American spends more than $1,200 annually on drive-thru fare.
Shake Shack, Chipotle, and other fast-casual food chains are planning to add more drive-thrus and lanes.
Recently, in one sales quarter, Starbucks made 90% of its sales through drive-thru and mobile orders.
Pre-pandemic, drive-thru orders were 70% of a quick-service restaurant’s revenue; that percentage has increased since.
Drive-thru isn’t just for fast food; more businesses, from coffee houses to breweries, are investing in drive-thrus to expand revenue and offer more customer conveniences.
The CDC includes drive-thrus as part of the lowest risk food service options during the pandemic.
Chipotle reported that their locations with drive-thrus outperformed their non-drive-thru locations by up to 15% more in sales.
Taco Bell is the first fast-food chain to open a two-story, four-lane drive-thru concept at their Brooklyn Park location in Minnesota.
In one month, digital drive-thru menus were installed at 800 Tim Hortons locations in the US and Canada
EL Pollo Loco’s “Restaurant of the Future” concept includes a dual drive-thru, a takeout menu, and curbside service—and no indoor dining room.
Boost Sales with Our Turnkey Drive-Thru Solution
Here at Raydiant, we pay close attention to our customer feedback. Our restaurateur customers have been asking for a comprehensive drive-thru solution that includes both the hardware needed and the Raydiant platform to power it all. We’ve heard you, and our partnership with leading screen technology firm GDS is the answer! We’ve made sure to join forces with one of the leading purveyors of digital indoor and outdoor LCD screens, promising a drive-thru system (from enclosure to screen, and all in between) made for years of flawless customer service in any weather. To learn more about this partnership, and how to take advantage of our complete drive-thru system, visit raydiant.com.