Fast-Food Kiosks Will be Prevalent by 2025

food kiosks

By the sound of it, food kiosks could take over many restaurant chains in 2024. The annual State of Digital Report by Qu revealed that kiosks are the top priority this year for QSRs and fast-casual restaurants.

The report found that 44% of restaurant brands plan to add kiosks as a new ordering channel this year. Qu noted that kiosks often drive larger check sizes while offering flexible, self-serve options.

“Brands have found the sweet spot mix of digital and in-person ordering after a roller coaster few years of getting their online houses in order,” Qu CEO Amir Hudda noted in a statement.

Qu, a restaurant POS company based in Bethesda, Maryland, analyzed 179 brands across 62,000 locations for its annual survey of QSRs and fast-casual restaurant brands. The survey’s respondents included the largest multi-brand, multi-unit restaurant operators. Qu’s findings suggest the future will largely be data driven, with API-centric platforms, new loyalty frameworks, and more AI use cases emerging.

The vast majority (80%) of respondents indicated loyalty isn’t currently a strength of their brand. Based off survey findings, Qu predicts a data-centric loyalty structure will soon emerge for restaurant chains.

“A new loyalty framework – with guest data and experience engagement at the core – is desperately needed to improve acquisition and retention across all guest segments,” Qu’s report noted.

Other noteworthy survey findings included:

  • Dynamic pricing is one of the top three strategies that brands plan to use AI for, trailing only AI-driven analytics and AI-driven voice ordering.
  • Digital menu boards are the No. 2 tech investment planned for 2024.
  • Digital sales make up 26% to 50% of overall sales for the brands surveyed.
  • Regarding flexible platforms, 65% said they favor a cloud-based, API-forward unified ordering and commerce platform.

“Overall, the report revealed good news for the market,” Hudda said. “Brands have learned what’s working for guests and are investing in modernizing and elevating the guest experience.

“As the economy and market settle into predictability,” he added, “we’ll start to see more innovation and a focus on technology for guest acquisition, loyalty, and ordering advancements.”


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