December 7, 2022
Lauren Platero

Decoding Restaurant Data Analytics: 5 Metrics to Increase Sales, Savings, and Efficiency

The Harvard Business Review said data-driven businesses are 23,000% more likely to improve customer acquisition. You see why restaurant data analytics has become the heart of operations, strategy, and even restaurant promotion. 

The restaurant industry values many points of data and signals of success. In restaurant customer data and CRM customer profiles to social media engagement and restaurant marketing ROI, opportunities to optimize present themselves to successful restaurant owners and operators.

Luckily, new restaurant tech like Revolution Ordering lets us keep tabs on crucial data points. Innovating restaurant tech and hospitality software for stock control, online ordering, and POS integration help restaurants quickly secure the right insights. 

When you find troves of trends about your business, you can strategize effectively to enhance customer experience. Ultimately, understanding your sales data will guide you to make the most supported and successful changes.

Let's define restaurant data analytics before diving into the five most important metrics for your brand. Choose the ideal metrics for your service approach and current challenges from this guide.

Revolution Ordering uses restaurant data analytics and reporting to empower clients.

What are Restaurant Data Analytics?

Restaurant data analytics include raw numbers, calculations, and their relationships (KPIs or “metrics”) which show true performance. 

Without such data, restaurants struggle to identify hidden ROI-hitting expenses like food waste, the cost of labor and inefficient practices that leak time and energy. 

5 Hotspots for Restaurant Data Analytics

Using restaurant analytics productively boosts your bottom line in many ways, for many reasons. As a business owner, harnessing sales data from POS data integration produces savvy strategies for restaurant growth.

To stay aware of the key restaurant metric areas affecting your performance, regularly monitor these five metric areas that drive your restaurant’s ability to attract, earn, and delight:

1. Kitchen Inventory

In many cases, the restaurant manager is responsible for keeping track of inventory control. Inventory analytics are so important since they dictate the items you can serve.

Eateries with fully stocked kitchens can always serve menu items with fresh ingredients. By doing so, they’re one step closer to establishing stellar customer service.

However, enterprise owners need to make sure that they’re not ordering too much inventory. Restaurant expenses can increase by purchasing more than what’s necessary. Plus, food spoilage and shrinkage will also increase restaurant food costs and operating costs.

Meanwhile, you might entertain using an inventory spreadsheet to help your staff take inventory. To take your inventory management techniques to the next level, upgrade to a user-friendly app, such as BlueCart.

2. Best-Selling Menu Items

Once you determine which menu items are your bestsellers, you’ll open new possibilities for making a restaurant menu to increase restaurant delivery sales

Plus, with menu management data, you can mindfully add better inventory control and even a create sustainable menus.

For instance, if you find that there are fan favorites, these items can serve as the dishes you promote in advertisements. You can also prioritize these items on QR codes and within social media assets.

Finding out which items generate the most revenue is also great for inventory tasks. 

Let’s say through restaurant POS integration reports, you determine that some dishes aren’t profitable, there will likely be ingredients to remove from restock orders. In time, this will save the business a significant amount of money.

Binise helps bars and restaurants manage inventory, menus, and much more.

3. Consumer Trends

Consumers can provide restaurants with an abundance of valuable insight. Business owners can use this information to cater to their customer base. They can also use such data to increase the restaurant profit margin over time.

Some of the most insightful information to watch are the following metrics:

  • The busiest times of the day
  • The busiest days of the week
  • The frequency of requests for specialty menu types
  • Consumer demographics (age, gender, location, etc.)
  • The average cart value of on-premise and off-premise orders

All of these metrics can lead to ongoing consumer trends. So, remain mindful as to which strategies you can implement.

4. On-Premise vs. Off-Premise Orders

The number of orders that take place at your brick and mortar restaurant is key in understanding restaurant data analytics. On the flip side, tracking orders for delivery is just as important.

Food delivery via third-party apps defines what is off premise. It’s a solution for many businesses, as it cuts overhead expenses and can grow the business further.

Depending on what your restaurant analytics indicate, it might be beneficial to update your eatery’s business model. If you find that delivery would be a profitable option, then go for it.

Just remember that numerical data should support such decisions. Be sure to learn about the cost to open a QSR if your business is suitable. A quick service restaurant business model is ideal for casual dining and cutting costs. If the numbers point in this direction, it may be worth revamping current operations.

5. Marketing ROI

Restaurant marketing strategies have the potential to accelerate business. However, there are many variables to consider.

Do you invest in restaurant promotions on an ongoing basis? Perhaps you have a monthly budget that is solely for marketing campaigns. Either way, tracking results is necessary.

Digital marketing efforts will likely be your most effective strategies. Fortunately, digital marketing is the easiest to track. From native analytics dashboards to third-party business analytics tools, keeping up with numerical progress is a must.

The ROI meaning refers to the money you invest in your business vs. the revenue it generates. This means that the social media ROI will refer to how many sales you make after investing in digital ads.

Learn more about restaurant marketing ideas to inspire future promotional campaigns.

Revolution Ordering supports clients with custom restaurant data analytics reporting, on their schedule.

Frequently Asked Questions About Restaurant Data Analytics

Determining which metrics you’ll monitor is the first step toward building a strategy backed by numbers: data-driven decision-making.

Supported by business intelligence, reporting and analysis will pay off and generate tangible results for your business.

Still have questions about analytics in restaurants? Keep reading to learn more about the importance of menu analysis, sales forecasting, and customer segmentation within the industry.

Do Restaurants Need Data Analytics?

What is the role of big data in restaurant ops?

Big data in restaurants helps to refine and redefine operational structure and operational efficiency. It starts with decision-making by analyzing item popularity, order trends, and inventory levels. 

Further, online ordering technology can add location-based analytics for even more insight.

How can data analytics improve restaurant labor performance?

Labor metrics provide valuable insights into staff performance (and labor costs). In each transaction, order, and delivery, online ordering technology can track server efficiency, collect feedback, and offer transparency into overall effectiveness.

With these metrics, you can identify labor solutions, reward high performers, invest in labor-saving devices, and ensure a superior dining experience.

How do you analyze restaurant data?

Set each restaurant KPI, especially inventory analytics and food cost analysis, before delving into restaurant data analytics. Without a solid predictive analytics model and goals in mind, it’ll be challenging to form conclusions from your metrics. 

  • Watch historical data to identify current trends and developing patterns
  • Understand flux in sales and efficiency to stay ahead and make improvements
  • Set data-driven decision-making strategies and examine analytics weekly
  • Conduct an extensive overview of all metrics on an ideally monthly term

How are analytics used in the restaurant industry?

Restaurant data analytics are used within the food industry for several purposes: 

  • Forecast sales and project future financial data
  • Gauge marketing efforts through customer analytics. 
  • Understand the customer profile via customer segmentation
  • Take inventory in the kitchen, leveraging inventory analytics. 
  • Strategize hiring processes, expansions, and acquisitions 
  • Use forecasting and location-based analytics to expand

How do restaurants collect data?

Restaurants gather data through various digital platforms for effective restaurant data analytics. Here's how:

  • Utilizing POS (Point of Sale) systems, they track customer trends and perform inventory analytics.
  • POS systems also support marketing initiatives, such as restaurant loyalty programs, enabling customer segmentation.
  • Social media analysis is another tool for collecting demographic data, enhancing the understanding of customer profiles.
  • The collected data is then instrumental in designing targeted ads, forming a more effective digital marketing strategy.

What is data analytics in hospitality?

Data analytics in the hospitality industry include measures of food service, entertainment, customer patterns, and order sales. Hospitality software companies are constantly releasing new features that assist managers in collecting analytics.

Do restaurants use databases?

Yes, restaurants frequently use databases. From innovative POS system features to third-party dashboards, there are many ways to track data analytics.  

If you manually track restaurant analytics, a platform as simple as Google Sheets or Microsoft Excel will do the trick. Just make sure that you track various metrics on a weekly basis. By doing so, you’ll be able to pinpoint why any changes occur.