In a fast rising popularity of technology, companies will use this to gain a competitive advantage. IT works in helping businesses reach their strategic goals. In the case for Sophia the goal would be to drive up her sales to meet with the standards that stiff competition has set up. Not knowing much about technology, Sophia would require help from an outside source in order to have the technology portion running smoothly. Website
One of the best ways to improve the IT component is to open up a website with the help from the website onepageapp.com. This vendor is perfect for small companies to start up a website to your liking. One page app would assist in the purchase of a domain name for the site people go to visit. With a drag and drop interface the site being designed to Sophia’s preferred theme and the main content she would prefer on the site. One page app offers a few monthly plans starting from eight dollars all the way to two hundred. In Sophia case, the best plan would be the twenty nine dollars a month that includes up to twenty additional users, forty newsletters a month and even priority support if having any issues within the website. One of the best incentives here is that when launching with one page app it also creates a website version for mobile phone and tablets. With the increased use of smartphones and the emergence of ipads, people who use these devices on the often can view your website in read able and simple form.
Another excellent feature one page app offers is engine optimization. The high use of search engines a good way to have website noticed is through the search results. With proper formatted HTML, Meta tags, meta descriptions, and sitemaps the results on search engines would attract more people viewing the website (OnePager, 2013). Sophia would be given useful analytics with one page app as the traffic the site receives would be documented along with the keywords used to gain the hits. The knowing of the keywords is valuable as we can use this information on seeing what foods people are searching on the web and what products are getting them redirected to Green Peppers website. Trying to further promote the interested item menu would only draw more interest from customers. Onepager allows for a great two stay connected with customers.
Having customers sign up for newsletters can have Sophia sending mass emails to subscribers for upcoming events and new menu items they may have. It’s a great way to keep good relation by also sending coupons for deals and such. If Sophia has trouble understanding these new online concepts she can elect to hire a part time employee or increase the duties of a current employees to keep the website updated. Constantly updating the site is crucial to stay competitive with any other restaurants. Twitter
Social Media is a great way for small companies to get some easy exposure. As of September of 2013 there are 200 million twitter users (Canadian Press, 2013). With so many users using one application, generating awareness of a company proves to be beneficial. Having a company twitter account is a great way in getting Sophia’s restaurant known. Twitter can help generate feedback on previous customer experience and ways they could make some improvements. This has worked well with some bigger companies where a customer would tag the business in their tweet expressing some displeasure and the company comes up with a reply to compensate the experience with apologies or even future deals.
Customers have already had issues with Green Peppers ordering techniques and this would be a good way for Sophia to gather some feedback. Green Pepper could also seek suggestions on different types of recipes customers would like to see being served. It would allow for them to add menu items that have potential on gaining popularity. Green Pepper would also be able to see what customers are saying about the local competition when it comes to service they provide and quality of food they tend to serve. This benchmark is probably the best when measuring the success of your current business.
Opening a twitter account is completely free and very easy to use. Tweets could be sent from any smartphone making it convenient to access for all users. Tweeting out special promotions going on would bring in more customers and consumers are always finding ways to eat for less money. Hash tags are a great way to research what most of the world is talking about. For example, if a celebrity tweets about how much they love Indian or Chinese food, it would provide Green Pepper with a great opportunity to tweet something to its followers referencing that comment to keep Green Pepper relevant.
Like twitter, having a Facebook account is free. With a positive word of mouth rating of a restaurant being most valuable to a company, Facebook is a good tool to enforce that. Facebook allows for Green Pepper to post restaurant’s menu and updates for its followers to see. Green Pepper can take pictures of their most visually appealing menu items and post the pictures for display in order to entice more customers. They can show videos on the process they take into making the Indian fused Chinese dishes. Fusion food being seemed risky for some consumers, they can showcase the dish on the flavors added and how it is prepped. Listing the benefits of the human body that certain spices can offer, appeals to many health conscious customers.
Keeping the account active is the most important as the regular customers who eat at Green Pepper would want to know what deals are occurring. It’s a great way to engage with the customers and making their personal experience at Green Pepper the best it could possibly be. Major fast food chains take great advantage of this by offering coupons online for their followers and always encouraging them to follow them on social media sites like Facebook and twitter. (Brandon, 2011) Replying to a post that a customer had at Green Pepper makes it feel more personal and the customer feels more satisfied as their questions and concerns are being noted by Sophia. Since Green Pepper is a small restaurant every negative comment about the service is a big issue on the company’s image.
Having a negative word of mouth comments spread can cause customers to decline fast. Getting customers to partake in polls and quizzes is a free research base as companies can get a lot of info based on the poll results (Eldon, 2009). Offering the meals that customers prefer is an important way in staying relevant. Having someone over-look the operation of Facebook could be great by hiring a part time employee or even increasing the responsibilities of a current employee working at Green Pepper. Group on
Groupon is website offering deals that many businesses are taking part in. Restaurants can offer deals on menu items for a fraction of cost if bought on Groupon. This is a great way into bringing customers into the restaurant and having them try other items on the menu and if they are satisfied with the service they could become returning customers. Another incentive is when a voucher is purchased not every customer goes and actually uses it. Many vouchers do have an expiry date and if the customer waits to long the voucher would no longer be valid and Green Pepper would still get half the purchase cost of the voucher. Since Groupon is running their site the only costs occur when the voucher is actually bought from a customer as Groupon takes half that money. They work as a great middleman between Green Pepper and future customers.
The downside of this route is that Groupon takes half the proceeds from the voucher. An example is having an 80 dollar menu voucher sold on Groupon for 40 dollars. Groupon then keeps 20 dollars of that and gives the remaining 20 to Green Pepper. Other flaws being seen in their business model in an article in Forbes magazine “Groupon’s biggest victims are the small businesses that get suckered in to accepting Groupons. Restaurants lose money on them because consumers flood the restaurants, order very low priced meals, strain waiters and cooks, get lousy service, and never return.” (Cohan, 2012). Sophia must know the capacity restrictions well and if offering a Groupon deal then must be fully staffed for that day. Allowing customers to leave the restaurant on a negative really affects the company image especially being a small restaurant.
The way for Green Pepper to optimize its profits would be to hire a part time employee to run the social media aspects in Facebook and twitter along with working with one page app and keeping the website updated. Many young adults have some experience in social networks and finding a University student who could work part time wouldn’t be difficult. They would oversee the twitter updates and tweeting on the regular. They could update the Facebook Photo album with menu dishes as well as keeping in contact with the customers leaving feedback on the social sites. One page app makes the design of the website so simple just would need the employee to making sure site is running smoothly and keeping in contact with the developers if any problem occurs. They would work with Sophia and teach her a little about the technology components as one page app allows many users having access to the website. The switch to technology focus should not be a hard one but instead a smart one.