Chippy adapts to new normal with online ordering
Food-Ordering.co.uk is an online food ordering software system that was set up by IT solutions specialists Naxtech.
It enables restaurants, takeaways, and pubs, as well as transport, healthcare and hospitality establishments, to provide its customer-base with online ordering, phone ordering, in-store ordering (i.e. self-service), and table booking with pre-orders.
Over the course of Covid 19, takeaways in the UK have endeavoured to adapt around restrictions for social distancing to help avoid risks of overcrowding while maintaining the flow of customers. One such takeaway is Turners Fish and Chips in Preston, which prior to the pandemic ran the conventional in-person operation you’d expect from a chippy.
“With the two-meter rule we could only admit two customers into our premises at any one time and gave customers a window with which to collect their food without coming into close contact with other customers. It soon became clear that we had to quickly and effectively make Turners more accessible for our customers”, said Shaun Turner, owner at Turners Fish and Chips. “If we could take remote orders, print the receipt and have both waiting for customers as they arrived, not only would we avoid risks of overcrowding, but we could make the customer journey much quicker and even enable more business.
“We’d heard of different food ordering services but were reluctant to sign up to something that would take a commission off orders, charge us each month or generally present a false economy service”, continued Turner. “A chippy isn’t normally the place where you’d look at the menu beforehand or call ahead to make an order, so remote ordering was likely to be a big change for us. We previously owned a basic cash register with built-in receipt printing, which was a crucial part of the sales transaction and I wanted to make sure that a new system wouldn’t compromise on this fundamental part of our business.”
Shaun Turner found Food-Ordering.co.uk while researching different food ordering options for his chippy. The service offered a trial experience for £1 per day, with no time limit, giving Shaun time to understand how their system could work with the business. Shaun then made a one-off payment to Food-Ordering.co.uk for an online ordering system to be set up and embedded in Shaun’s business. This included the design and development of their food-ordering system, which is embedded into their website, and the installation of an Epson TM-T88VI iHub POS printer.
Denis Kondopoulos, Senior Technical Project Manager at Naxtech, said: “Epson’s TM-T88VI receipt printer is a key component in the Food-Ordering.co.uk proposition as it serves as a central hub for all sales transactions that Turner Fish & Chips customers make, whether online or onsite. Print data is now automatically collected from their website upon each finalised food order and is delivered directly to the Epson TM-T88VI receipt printer thanks to the devices Server Direct Print function. It also operates in the exact same way they were used to before they added Food-Ordering.co.uk to their business, which meant there was no training involved and receipt printing was consistent with both online and in-person transactions.”
Since introducing Food-Ordering.co.uk to their business, Turners Fish and Chips has not only kept afloat during the difficulties caused by the pandemic but they have seen a growth in new customers and overall business.
“Our business has been able to operate more efficiently thanks to the new food-ordering system”, continued Turner. “Now roughly a third of our business is based on walk-in orders, a third online orders and a third are from phone orders, with online and phone orders offering both click-and-collect or delivery. We solely used social media and word of mouth to community the new food ordering system. We’ve not had to compromise on our way or working and we’re not tied down with new monthly costs either, so all around this has been a very positive change to our business and its meant we can bring our exceptional menu to more and more customers.”
Turners Fish and Chips are now looking to expand on their use of the Food-Ordering.co.uk system by using it for telephone orders and using callerID, while also automatically printing receipts and labels in different work stations/locations within the business, using the Epson L90 label printer and Epson T20III thermal receipt printer.