Top 3 Technological Trends at National Restaurant Show 2022

What were the Top 3 Technological Trends at NRA 2022?

It was a busy week at National Restaurant Association Show in Chicago. We saw our fair share of trends percolating across the restaurant industry. The event featured over 1,300 exhibitors across 900 categories covering over 600,000 feet of event space. From the robotic deep fryer to the Segway ServeBots, there was a lot to discover at National Restaurant Show 2022. Let’s unpack the top 3 technological trends Raydiant unveiled at this year’s event.

Dynamic Digital Menu Boards

The restaurant experience – especially that of the fast-casual restaurant – is going digital. And we know that digital menus are nothing new. For a while now, restaurants – particularly franchise restaurants – have utilized them to ditch the cardboard and go with digital signage. But simple, static menus aren’t enough to enhance the customer experience. Restaurants need a way to highlight their menu items while simultaneously integrating with their POS and heightening their brand. 

This year, we unveiled our new On-Brand Menu API. The API provides restaurants with 100% custom, brandable menus powered by point of sale data. Restaurants can use the Raydiant app to create branded digital menu boards that update dynamically through a host of POS integrations, including Toast, and coming soon, SquareCloverRevelPAR Brink, and TRAY. Whether you have ten locations or 10,000, the new On-Brand Menu API creates a seamless experience by reflecting real-time menu updates, pricing changes, and out-of-stock or 86ed items. This revolutionary new feature is the next evolution in the customer experience for restaurant-goers. 

Engaging Back-of-House Content is a Cinch

Top 3 Technological Trends - New Mobile AppKeeping employees engaged in the workplace has been a constant struggle in the restaurant industry. Companies face higher turnover rates, weakening morale, and a lack of employee recognition. Raydiant’s new mobile app aims to fix these problems. hone in on improving the employee experience in the restaurant industry.

The app has three main communication features: Messaging & Alerts, Data & Gamification, and Recognition & Rewards, and aims to help employees perform their best by engaging them through their smartphones rather than through bulletin boards, emails, or other antiquated methods. Recent mobile usage data from 2021 revealed that 85% of Americans now own a smartphone, and 90% of smartphone time is spent on mobile apps. Therefore, it seems prudent for companies to capitalize on this medium. 

Keeping employees engaged is crucial for any restaurant’s success, with s​ome reports suggesting productivity increases up to 25% in well-connected teams. Raydiant’s mobile app helps businesses capitalize on this success by providing a streamlined way to connect deskless workers with their employers. 

AI for Restaurant Kiosks

One method to ensure smooth, in-location dining experiences is by incorporating anonymous AI technology into restaurant digital signage and kiosks. “It’s no longer about just changing your static menu to a digital sign with moving pictures,” said Jodi Wallace, chief marketing officer at Acrelec America. “It’s about having a strategic view of the entire customer interaction and how to integrate all the potential customer touchpoints to create a stellar customer experience.” 

With Raydiant’s recent acquisition of Sightcorp, AI analytics in restaurants has taken a significant step forward. Customers are offered tailored product suggestions throughout their ordering journey using real-time analysis of demographics combined with historical purchase data per persona group. Using age and gender analysis in real-time, the AI determines which persona group is using the kiosk. Based on that, it will show products that have proven popular with customers in the same demographic group. The restaurant owner can evaluate the displayed products beforehand within the CMS. Depending on the customer personas present in-store, content can be tailored to each group.

This level of insight fosters higher engagement, increases purchase likelihood, and enables the delivery of highly targeted promotional campaigns.

National Restaurant Show 2022 proved invaluable for fostering new technological waves in the restaurant industry. With these three Raydiant releases, we’re pioneering a new way for customers to experience a restaurant and employees to stay engaged with their employers’ brand and community.

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