8 Restaurant Trends Emerging in the Future

Even though the COVID-19 pandemic has made staying in business difficult for many restaurants, the restaurant industry has also been finding ways to innovate and to keep providing safe and timely services to their hungry customers.

The ability to understand and follow the newest trends, and to quickly adapt to challenging situations, can make the difference between the failure or the success of a restaurant owner.

With that being said, here are 8 restaurant trends that should shape up the next few years:

Trend #1: More hungry customers will turn to online ordering

Why should you call a restaurant when you can simply go online to order your next meal? This is what many hungry people are thinking each day, and as a result, online ordering is a trend that will keep rising in popularity.

Any restaurant that does not yet offer online ordering might want to consider doing something about it before they fall behind their competition.

For establishments that are not equipped to handle delivery themselves, partnering with a popular third-party delivery service makes sense.

Trend #2: Drones and autonomous vehicles will deliver food

Autonomous vehicle food delivery is a restaurant trend that you need to keep an eye on. No one likes when the food they ordered is starting to get cold when it reaches their doorstep. On average, it takes between 10 and 30 minutes for someone driving a car to deliver a meal to a customer. But what if the meal could get there much faster?

Some third-party delivery services, including Uber Eats, are already experimenting with drone delivery, which only takes between 5 and 10 minutes.

In the near future, more companies are expected to transform the way restaurants deliver food by turning to drones and autonomous vehicles.

Trend #3: Ghost restaurants can invest in better equipment & supplies

Ghost or virtual restaurants are restaurants that don’t have a dining area, and simply deliver the food they prepare to their customers, sometimes through the use of a third-party delivery service.

Many restaurant owners have turned to this system because of the pandemic, while others choose this concept simply because they find it more affordable.

Since ghost restaurants don’t require dining areas, dinnerware, servers, and hosts, they can invest more money in stocking their kitchen with high-quality restaurant equipment & supplies.

Trend #4: Consumers will keep expecting transparency

Consumers now care more than ever about the environment and about their own health, and they expect and demand transparency whenever they want to spend their hard-earned money.

To stay relevant and competitive, restaurants will have to publicize the impact of their operations on the environment, their stance on animal welfare, and their zero-waste efforts.

Many customers will want to eat foods that will improve their health, and they will be ready to pay more to support restaurants that have fair and sustainable practices.

Trend #5: Restaurant management platforms will simplify everything

In the future, restaurants will keep relying on technology to help them provide a pleasant and unique experience to their customers. A restaurant management platform makes it easier for restaurant owners and managers to manage their inventory and their menu, to handle online orders, to set up a convenient loyalty program, and to gather and analyze important data.

Restaurant management platforms are sure to keep improving, and technology will keep allowing managers and employees to focus on what they do best: run their restaurant, prepare delicious meals, and serve them to their customers.

Trend #6: Fast-casual restaurant chains will keep expanding

Fast-casual restaurants are already extremely popular, and this trend is not about to end. Fast-casual restaurants don’t offer full table service, but the food they serve is better than the food prepared in fast food restaurants.

Many people now prefer fast-casual restaurants because they are affordable, convenient, and quick to prepare healthier and more flavourful meals.

Of course, this doesn’t mean fast food chains and fine dining restaurants will go extinct in the future. However, anyone who wants to start a new restaurant should really consider the type of services offered by fast-casual chains.

Trend #7: The work culture will improve to help retain employees

Working in a restaurant is not for everyone, and there is usually a high turnover. Finding new employees can be easy, but retaining them often proves more difficult.

To reduce turnover rates, some restaurant owners are starting to understand that developing a positive work culture makes a difference. By offering a stable work environment, interesting benefits, and growth opportunities to their employees, they will make them want to stay and to work with more enthusiasm.

Trend #8: Robot chefs could start working in restaurant kitchens

Yes, there are Artificial Intelligence powered robots that can cook delicious meals. They are not about to replace human chefs, but they could eventually assist them in the kitchen, and reduce their workload.

Automation is a trend that seems to be taking over many industries, so it only makes sense that different companies are now working on developing robot chefs that could eventually provide a unique dining experience to their human guests.