Blog / August 2, 2022

Top trends coming to the restaurant industry this year


We've got the inside scoop on the top emerging restaurant trends this year to help you stay ahead

As the restaurant industry continues to shift more and more to delivery, new innovative tech is emerging to help restaurant businesses thrive. 

Whether it’s tapping into new revenue streams, implementing contactless delivery systems, or leveraging smart technology, restaurant owners will need to continue to adapt more to this ever changing landscape. 

In fact, it’s estimated that 50% of restaurant owners are tapping into new revenue streams, such as grocery, retail, and meal kits.

What we consider the traditional restaurant dining experience is rapidly changing, and a new age is upon us. 

To help you stay ahead of these growing trends, we’re diving into the top trends that will be making the largest impact this year. 

New delivery app features 

Major delivery apps like Uber Eats and Grubhub are continuing to add new features as more hungry customers return to each app for a new online food order. 

Uber Eats is now offering searchable pickup maps, which allow customers to simply search for a cuisine by using an emoji. Hungry customers can also start ordering ahead for pickup at airports, to avoid waiting in line at the counter before their flight. Delivery apps across the globe are becoming more and more convenient for hungry customers searching online. 

Grubhub is helping football fans get back to the game with order pick up at sports stadiums. It’s estimated that this will help cut wait times in half at major sporting events.

From airports to sports stadiums, customers are expecting more convenience when it comes to online food ordering. 

If you’re ready to test out new delivery app promotions, DoorDash is now offering sponsored listings where you’ll only have to pay for orders placed. None of your ad spend will have to go towards impressions and clicks. 

It's vital to stay on top of new delivery app features to ensure you're adapting to new trends and staying ahead of the curve.

Major restaurant brands are even testing out automated cooking and order taking to streamline operations at each restaurant location. We’re diving into that next.

Autonomous delivery and pickup robots

McDonald’s is testing out new innovations when it comes to cooking and taking orders. At a handful of locations, they’re already testing out bots that are used to cook orders, Alexa-style voice ordering, and self-serve kiosks being used to drive pickup orders.

The fast food chain is also testing delivery meal drops using drones as part of a partnership with Uber Eats. The top delivery app is continuing to test out new delivery drones across the U.S. to help cut delivery times.4

Autonomous delivery vehicles are also underway, which means longer hours of operation, with the help of artificial intelligence. 

According to Forbes, it’s estimated that by the end of 2022, dozens of cities across the U.S. will have delivery robots in use to help cut labor costs and delivery times.5

In addition to delivery drones, there is additional tech emerging in the restaurant industry to help automate tasks. 

Automating customer service 

With labor shortages across the country, more restaurant brands are adapting to new tech to help streamline operations and automate tasks. By automating customer communications and payments, you’ll be able to quickly fill any gaps so you can get back to business. 

In fact, up to 46% of restaurant owners are already automating their customer communications to help streamline their business.1

Think of how much more time you could spend on revamping your restaurant menu or testing out new concepts when you have tech automating different tasks for you. As delivery continues to rise, it's vital for restaurant owners to maximize efficiency to stay ahead of the competition. 

We're diving into contactless deliveries next, so you can learn how to offer even more online ordering options for hungry customers. 

Contactless deliveries 

QR codes are here to stay, as contactless payment and ordering options have become the new normal.

But what about contactless deliveries? 

More restaurant owners are providing contactless delivery options to their customers. Through enabling doorstep delivery, curbside pickup or pre-payment options, you can offer your customers peace of mind whenever they order from you. 

Large chains like Papa John’s are offering no contact and touchless deliveries, even including a quality seal on each pizza order.

As you implement new tech to automate workflows and expedite the delivery process, you can also explore additional revenue streams to capitalize on market demand. 

New revenue streams 

In order to diversify revenue streams, restaurant owners are shifting to grocery, retail and meal kits to turn profits. The convenience of these options are resulting in up to 40% of customers ordering items outside of their standard meal order from a restaurant.1

Now you can diversify your restaurant business while maximizing revenue online through a variety of revenue streams. 

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