8 Ways to Use POS Data To Improve Marketing at Your Restaurant

By Raubi Perilli

      Oct 21, 2022     Solutions    

When it comes to marketing your restaurant, you need to use every tool at your disposal. You need to tap into every resource that can help you increase orders and drive customers into your business.

That's why you need to use POS data in your marketing.

The Connection Between POS Data and Marketing

If you use a point-of-sale system (POS) to run your restaurant, you have a trove of data that can improve your marketing efforts. Restaurant POS systems list all of your offerings and process orders and payments, among dozens of other activities. The data collected from these processes provide a wealth of knowledge about your customers, offerings, and team.  

If you know how to analyze this data, you can use the information to create marketing campaigns that drive more sales and higher results.  

Related: Customer Data Platform vs. CRM | What's the Difference?

How to Use POS Data for Marketing

Here are a few ways you can gain insights from your POS to create better, more effective marketing campaigns.

#1) Determine which items to promote.

A good POS system has reporting that shows your best and worst selling items. These reports offer insights to drive your marketing campaigns. You can see which items are already popular and will likely drive strong results in promotions.  

When you identify popular items, you can:  

  • Update your menu to highlight best-sellers (and note that they are a customer favorite).
  • Train your servers to promote popular items.
  • Run ads and promotions for offerings that customers love.
  • Offer coupons for items you know customers crave.

#2) Measure marketing campaign success.

Once you run a marketing campaign, you can use your POS to measure whether or not the campaign was a success. You can:  

  • Measure the sales of the item you promoted.
  • Track coupon code usage and associated sales revenue.
  • Monitor sales data to measure bumps or dips during your campaign.

For example, a bar could run two campaigns on social media. One campaign could offer a buy-one-get-one drink coupon while the other campaign runs a 20% off your tab promo. The data from the bar POS could show how many times each promotion was used, offering insights into what customers want and what to promote in your next social media campaign.

Related: Marketing Campaign Analysis: How to Learn to Drive Better Results Next Time

#3) Run customer loyalty programs.

In addition to tracking data about offerings, a restaurant POS can also collect information about your customers. A POS system can create customer profiles that produce valuable data and drive customer loyalty programs.  

Customer loyalty programs are useful for both learning about your customers and driving existing customers back to your business. A POS makes it easy to set up and manage effective loyalty programs.

#4) Identify the best customer segments to target.

When you use your POS to collect data about your customers, you can start to learn about your most loyal customers. You can identify trends in customer segments that visit often and spend the most money at your restaurant.  

When you identify your best customer segments, use the data to run better marketing campaigns. Use messaging that targets your specific audience and use hypertargeting options in paid ads to reach the right people.  

Related: 7 Audience Segmentation Examples and How to Use Them

#5) Collect insights from surveys.

Restaurant POS systems generate data by processing orders and transactions. But, you can also use your POS to generate even more information about your customers. Use your POS system to share surveys with customers after their order to gain insights from your customers.  

Add surveys after check-out or send a follow-up email with a survey through your POS to rate customer satisfaction as well as gauge interest in new offerings or promotions.  

Related: 9 Opportunities Your Local Business Misses by Ignoring Customer Feedback

#6) Send automated, personalized emails.

One of the best ways to use POS data to boost your marketing efforts is through marketing automation. You can use your POS to create customer profiles and collect customer contact information. Then, you can set up automated marketing emails that reach out to customers based on their purchasing habits.  

For example, you can send emails to existing customers and:  

  • Include personalized details such as their name or city.
  • Highlight offers that are related to past orders.
  • Promote new offerings that are related to past orders.
  • Invite in customers who haven't visited in a while.

Related: What Is Personalized Marketing & How Can Local Brands Use It?

#7) Identify your best sales staff.

Your restaurant staff is a part of your marketing team. Each person in your restaurant can help connect with customers and increase orders. Your POS can help you identify who on your team is doing the best job at marketing to in-store customers. Review your POS by staff member to see which order-taker, server, and bartender has the:  

  • Highest tips
  • Fastest table turnovers
  • Highest sales
  • Most upsells

Reward team members who are performing well. Ask them to help with training team members who aren’t performing as well. And, create contests and incentives to help your restaurant team boost their performance.

#8) Identify your best stores.

POS systems work across multiple locations. If you run more than one restaurant, you can sync your data from each location into one system. This combined data helps with the other marketing initiatives mentioned in this post. It also helps you compare data across your locations.  

Use the data to identify stores with the highest performance and look for trends at those locations. Determine which location should receive more of your marketing dollars. Consider why one location is performing well while another lags behind, and look for opportunities to recreate the success of one location at another location.  

Related: How Multi-Location Restaurants Can Use Data to Increase Revenue & Improve Operations 

Use POS Insights to Drive Marketing Initiatives

Data about your restaurant is one of the most useful tools in your marketing toolbox. If you are using a POS to manage your restaurant, you probably already have loads of data that can help inform your marketing decisions and plans.  

Use these tips to pull data from your POS that can drive your marketing initiatives.  

And, if you need help with this process, contact our team at MyArea Network. We specialize in building customer data platforms and using data insights to develop and improve local marketing campaigns.

Talk to us about how we can help you set up data collection systems or tap into existing data to create better, more effective marketing campaigns for your restaurant.