McDonalds are leading the way in Near Field Communication
Leading fast food supplier McDonalds have announced that they will have installed contactless payments terminals in all their UK outlets by the end of this month. McDonalds also announced they are looking at ways of leveraging Near Field Communication Technology in promotions and loyalty schemes. This major initiative will undoubtedly foster increased use and take up of this advancing Near Field Communication Technology. Other UK fast food outlets embracing Near Field Communication Technology are EAT, Caffè Nero and Pret A Manger. Many of these outlets will be aggressively promoting contactless payments as it will shorten the consumers waiting time leading to a better Brand experience. Happy customers equal more sales. The introduction of Smart Posters to the mix will allow these early adopters to better communicate with customers and supply Brand information like menus or deals on demand.
Smart Posters using Near Field Communications (NFC) tags will be an emerging marketing medium for promoting restaurants, fast food outlets and takeaways. Using Near Field Communication tags, fast food outlets will be able to communicate with existing and potential customers directly from their NFC Mobile Smart Phones.
Near Field Communication Smart Poster in Marketing and Promotion
By using Near Field Communication Smart Posters to advertise and market their businesses, restaurateurs, coffee shops and fast food outlets will be able to pass menu and contact information directly into their customer’s NFC mobile phone handsets. Customers simply “swipe” their handset over an NFC Smart Poster and the information is transferred automatically from the Near Field Communication Chip to the NFC Smart Phone. Smart Posters placed in the proximity of an outlet will also allow businesses to promote themselves and provide directions for ravenous customers. Many savvy fast food chains are developing NFC applications for Smart Phones using iPhone and Google’s Android operating systems that will allow the consumer to effortlessly interact with their Brand. The NFC apps can allow time poverty consumers to order items ready for collection.
Saving Costs with Near Field Communication
In the outlets Near Field Communication tags can be used in place of traditional printed menus, allowing customers to make selections and place their orders directly from their phone to the kitchen using the information stored on the electronic menu. As the menu changes, printing costs can be dramatically reduced as the NFC tag can be updated for a fraction of the cost usually associated with traditional printed menus. The Near Field Communication back end software will also allow for instant price changes.
Collecting and Analyzing Data from NFC Smart Posters
Near Field Communication Smart Posters also allow dissemination of other information to customers, such as ingredients, dietary information and potential allergens. Special offers and discounts can be pulled by customers from Near Field Communication Smart Posters to help increase transaction values and increase brand loyalty. The Brand will be better informed about consumer buying patterns and this will lead to far more intelligent targeted marketing initiatives.
Contactless Near Field Communication Payments
Moving beyond NFC Smart Posters, coffee shops, takeaways and fast food outlets will be also able to extend their NFC capabilities to contactless payment processing. A small wireless card reader will allow customers to pay for their orders simply by swiping their NFC Smart Phone over the device, similar to the Oyster Card travel system in the London Underground. The relative amount will be deducted from the consumer’s electronic wallet and an electronic receipt issued.
The Author Paul Lakeman is a director of Near Field Communication (Jersey) Ltd-Office 9130 Freight Building-Jersey Airport-St Peter-Jersey-JE3 7BY
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