The next frontier for online media and smartphone usage in Melbourne may well be the dining table.
An emerging trend in the food-mad and highly-competitive Melbourne eat-in dining scene is for many of the city’s most popular cafés and restaurants to integrate online technology to help better manage seating flow and reduce the time it takes for customers to get a table and food.
Software engineer and lead product developer Owen Parry from Melbourne-based online reservations company Obee said it’s important for restaurants to keep pace with their customers’ technology habits and preferences.
“There is no question the internet is rapidly changing the way restaurant customers are making their reservations,” he said.
“People are starting to expect the convenience of instant and real-time table availability and booking confirmation and this customer trend will only increase in the years ahead.”
One restaurant owner who is already on-board with the technology is South Melbourne’s Q eleven proprietor Barry O’Donnell. He noted the benefits of having an automated online table bookings service, especially on his restaurant’s peak times.
“On busy nights, like Valentine’s Day, Christmas or a just a big Saturday night, having an automated online bookings system has become essential to the running of our business,” he said.
“It really helps with keeping our restaurant constantly full and having a nice seating flow, which means we have happy customers who aren’t getting frustrated with excessively long waits.”