Mobile apps being embraced by local restaurants

Some independent restaurants in Charlottetown are embracing new technology to stay competitive and using mobile apps to make ordering easier for their customers, but have found it has the added benefit of saving their business money.

Customers can pick everything from toppings to pop, all on their smartphone

The app also includes a loyalty card and a mapping function to help drivers deliver to the right address. (CBC)

Some independent restaurants in Charlottetown are embracing new technology to stay competitive and using mobile apps to make ordering easier for their customers, but have found it has the added benefit of saving their business money.

The owner of Dino's Pizza, Claude Ayoub, said most customers are used to phoning their orders in, but now phone apps can make it faster.

"It's just more convenient, you see all the big chains doing it, if you want to look for something it's a lot easier now," he said.

Customers can pick everything from toppings to pop, all on their smartphones so staff can focus on making pizza, instead of answering the phone.

Ayoub said the mobile app is a much more cost-effective way to connect with customers. 

"Altogether, at the end of the year I'd say we're saving money," he said. "With yellow pages we were paying over $15,000 a year for basically just an ad on the paper, this is a lot better."

It cost Ayoub about $3,000 to develop the app and in only two months, 30 per cent of his business is already coming from mobile orders.

Taco Boyz manager Daniel Lanois said they've been using a mobile app since last summer and it's been a huge hit.

"Probably have to say about 60 per cent of our customers honestly, use it a lot," he said.

The mobile apps can also be used to send out promotions to registered customers. Lanois said with so many other businesses and services going mobile, it was important to keep up. 

"You have to be up to date with everything that's out there, cause if you just open a restaurant without knowledge of what year we're in, you're going look pretty old school," he said.

The app also includes a loyalty card and a mapping function to help drivers deliver to the right address.

With files from Jessica Doria-Brown

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