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Unleashing the Power of Digital Menu Boards: Boosting Revenue and Slashing Labor Costs for Franchises

Unleashing the Power of Digital Menu Boards

The franchise industry has seen several economic factors impacting their operations in recent years. These include staff shortages, evolving consumer expectations, heightened competition, inflation, mandatory wage levels in certain states, and other legislative changes.

According to the 2024 Economic Outlook Franchisor Survey, 81% of franchises increased wages in the past 6 months, and 61% are planning to increase in the next 6 months. These higher wages have led to margin compression.

In addition, many franchisees struggle to find and retain employees, with 80% reporting unfilled job vacancies. This places additional strain on existing staff, leading to higher turnover rates, which is not only costly, but also directly affects the customer experience and revenue.

In response to these challenges, franchisees are adjusting their strategies and embracing technology to boost revenue, reduce labor costs, and enhance the overall customer experience.

Innovating with Digital Menu Boards

Digital menu boards are playing an increasingly important role in enhancing employee efficiency, improving customer experience and brand perception, and delivering more personalization and self-service options for consumers.

Content management of digital menu boards is through a cloud-based portal, providing many benefits including the ability to scale, ease of use, integration with a diverse range of systems, such as point of sale (POS) and applications, accessibility from anywhere, and the opportunity to leverage emerging technologies, such as artificial intelligence (AI) and data analytics.

In restaurants, digital menu boards are commonly used to enhance the ordering experience for customers by displaying dynamic content such as menu options, updated pricing, specials, promotions, high-resolution images, and reviews.

Integration with POS systems and inventory management software further enhances operational efficiency by automating menu updates based on availability and price changes in real-time. This ensures pricing is accurate and enables restaurants to optimize inventory levels and minimize waste. It also enables greater agility in adapting to customer preferences, responding to competition, and staying ahead of market trends.

In service businesses, digital menu boards provide a list of add-on services and can explain the value of these upsell items. The use of visuals, specifically video, to explain is a powerful tool. In cases where the customer may be waiting for service work to be completed, the digital menu board can serve as infotainment, reducing the perceived wait time.

For franchisors and brands, building scalable and flexible business models while maintaining brand consistency across all locations is crucial. With digital menu boards, one person can manage the updates for all stores from a simple and intuitive internet-based dashboard, creating uniformity and ensuring price and content consistency for the brand.

Furthermore, digital menu boards can be updated remotely from any location, allowing corporate staff to make the updates, while local employees focus on delivering exceptional customer service and food quality.

Elevating the Customer Experience

Digital menu boards are redefining the future of the customer experience and offering franchises a fundamental change in how they interact with their customers.

Consumers are increasingly prioritizing the value of personalization in products and experiences, therefore maintaining a strong connection with consumers is crucial for cultivating a deeper brand-consumer relationship. Vibrant graphics and interactive elements, such as animations and videos, available with digital menu boards engage customer attention in ways that traditional static menus simply can’t match.

Adopting innovative technology, such as digital menu boards, combined with creative marketing strategies empowers franchises to elevate the customer experience and remain relevant and competitive without the constant updates, inconvenience, labor, and expense of static menu displays.

Stepping Into the Future with Digital Menu Boards

While digital menu boards won’t solve all your staffing challenges, they can significantly simplify and automate routine and time-consuming tasks, allowing franchises to reduce labor costs and enhance brand image, while focusing on strategic planning and growth opportunities.

To learn more about how Hughes Digital Menu Boards help franchises improve revenues, elevate customer experience, and reduce costs, watch our video and contact us to explore a tailored solution for your franchise.