Control is a big part of human nature. It’s the reason commuters will take a route that’s three minutes longer just to avoid a section of stop-and-go interstate. It’s why streaming television services charge a premium to avoid commercials. And it’s also a big reason why diners will opt for takeout over delivery.
People like to control their situations, and when it comes to dinner, that means gaining the ability to pick up food exactly when it’s ready rather than wait for a delivery service that may or may not be waiting at the restaurant when the food is hot. It means bypassing a driver who might choose a longer delivery route instead of the shortcut.
The factor of control, of course, is food quality. When a consumer can pick up food rather than wait for it, the condition of the meals being ordered is more dependent on the person placing the order instead of the driver delivering it, and for many, that produces an element of comfort.
In the era of Covid, studies have shown that ignoring this behavior can be a big mistake. Restaurants have seen and will continue to see an increased shift toward takeout, and touchless pickup options can further reinforce this type of consumer preference.
Meet Customers in the Middle with PUC
Touchless pickup solutions can provide a method for restaurants to meet customers halfway, in some cases literally. By placing heated cabinets that hold to-go food at temperatures that preserve food quality, and by allowing for those units to offer touchless service, operators can bridge the gap between the kitchen and the parking lot.
If there’s one factor these days that might be even more important than consumer control, it’s consumer safety. The next generation of grab-n-go solutions is here, and the Pick Up Cabinet, or PUC, from Carter-Hoffmann provides the latest technologies to create safe, secure, automated, and self-serve pickup while preserving food quality and giving consumers the element of control so many desire.