The global kiosk market is expected to be worth $30.8 billion thanks in large part to the shift in quick-service restaurants (QSRs) towards self-service technology, according to a new report by Tillster and research firm SSI.
The Tillster research surveyed 2,000 QSRs and their customers. According to its findings, kiosk usage in restaurants is up and will continue growing over time: 37 percent of customers said they had used a kiosk last year, up from 20 percent the previous year, and another 67 percent said they intended to place an order with a self-service kiosk within the next year.
Customers also said that if the line at a QSR is longer than four people, they would prefer to order at a kiosk. And, perhaps most surprisingly, usage numbers don’t skew towards a younger generation; the research found that kiosks are popular across age groups.
The research noted that, “Self-service kiosks help restaurants with line-busting, which in turn optimizes the customer experience. Kiosks have also proven to increase average check size through consistent upselling and cross-selling.”
Part of this growth is fueled simply by the availability of kiosk technology in restaurants. Major QSRs, from Dunkin’ and Shake Shack to Wingstop and Wendy’s have implemented the technology in at least some locations.
However, a more important part of this technology’s ongoing growth in QSRs is not about the presence of the machines themselves but about what those machines are capable of doing in terms of speeding up service and offering a more personalized menu experience to customers. McDonald’s is the obvious case in point here: its recent acquisition of Dynamic Yield and ongoing rollout of AI-powered menu personalization suggests a new standard for kiosks that will at some point start to become the norm. Soon, it won’t be enough to have durable hardware and a slick, easy-to-use interface. Rather, QSR kiosks will need to come built the ability to tell customers exactly what they want the moment they step up to the screen.