An Interview with a Developer

We sat down with one of our software engineers, Bhuvan, who led the Clover integrated kiosk development project here at Hazlnut, to ask him about how he approached our first tangible hardware project.

Thank you for joining us, Bhuvan.

Good to be here.

When our executive team announced the Hazlnut Kiosks idea, we were obviously eager to see what it would become. What was the most exciting thing to you about starting the Hazlnut Kiosks project?

The whole concept of kiosks and the numerous problems it solves for our clients made it an exciting and unique opportunity for me as a Software Engineer. I like to look at the impact that a technology can have, and the timing of this product couldn’t be more right. Kiosks tackle labor shortage problems, improve order flows and wait times, etc. which I feel make it a must-have for restaurants.

That’s great to hear that you were immediately inspired by the solution it would provide for our restaurant partners. Once you got started, what were the biggest challenges you tackled during the development process?

Being new to iOS development, there was a learning curve for sure which was the biggest hurdle when I started working on the Clover integrated kiosk. I was able to get on fairly quickly with the help of my teammates. Later on, working with a third-party physical accessory which is the card reader, and using new payment gateway services came with their own set of challenges.

How did you confront the additional challenges presented by the card reader accessory, and what did you ultimately learn from that experience?

Since it was something entirely new to us, we relied on the information they could provide. The documentation on the reader and its APIs was pretty obscure and there wasn’t much online either so I had to reach out to the technical team in charge of maintaining the reader’s firmware and APIs at times. I also read a lot of documentation and examples on Swift language’s external accessory modules. Overall, it made my skillset more diverse and I got some valuable experience having discussions with other developers from that technical team.


Well, I am glad you were able to overcome those hurdles. What features are you the proudest of?

I’m proud of the entire project for sure because a kiosk must be robust and reliable as it always keeps running, order after order. Features like a streamlined order flow and UI, building orders on the point of sale in real-time, and enabling card/contactless payments through the card reader and payment services in a secure way would be on the top of my list.

It sounds like a lot of features got packed into this device. Speaking of UI and order flow, what inspired you to build it out in the way that you did?

The restaurants’ customers are the end-users here so having a fast and streamlined order flow, and a very user-friendly UI were our focal points. Having discussions with the team, bouncing ideas off of each other helped a lot.

Well that’s all the time we have today, thank you so much for joining us.

If you wanted to hear more about Bhuvan, check out this blog post where we sat down with him and explored his background, how he became a part of the Hazlnut Team, and some of his interests outside of work.

How Hazlnut Makes Contactless Ordering Easy

Contactless ordering has gained a lot of popularity, as customers become less comfortable with handing their cash or card to a cashier

The COVID-19 pandemic has taken quite a toll on the US economy, but perhaps no industry has been hit harder than hospitality. Lockdowns, dine-in restrictions, and fears about food preparation have all contributed to many businesses closing their doors for good.

If your business has survived to this point, congratulations, that’s a huge accomplishment! But as a vaccine rolls out and this virus becomes a part of history, a new normal will set in regarding the health and safety standards people want and expect from businesses.

Contactless ordering is a term that has gained a lot of popularity recently, as customers are becoming increasingly uncomfortable with handing a cashier their cash or credit card. So how can your business navigate this trend and continue to serve customers in a way they expect and appreciate? Hazlnut provides a suite of features to make this transition easy for everyone!

Ordering for Pick-up, Curbside, or Delivery

contactless ordering

If your restaurant doesn’t have an online or mobile ordering platform, you’re already behind the times and failing to give customers the convenient ordering methods that are essential to restaurants in this environment. Hazlnut’s core order types, pickup, curbside, and delivery, all provide ways that a customer can safely obtain their meal without having to come in contact with other people. And if you need something more tailored to your business, Hazlnut gives you the ability to create a “custom” order type to perfectly fit your unique situation!

These alternate order types make it possible for customers to completely avoid waiting in a line of people, drastically improving social distancing and hopefully helping to stop the spread of this virus. Being able to have food placed at your doorstep or in the trunk of your car can help alleviate some of the anxiety customers have and allows you to continue serving everyone effectively.

In-Store Scanning

Mobile apps through Hazlnut include a very useful feature called “Mobile Pay.” Much like what you’d see at Starbucks, this feature allows a customer to pay for an in-store transaction by simply scanning a QR code at the register. On most Clover devices, such as the Clover Station, you’re able to flip the screen around and let the customer scan on the built-in camera. No extra hardware needed! But for those who expect to do a lot of scanning, we recommend buying an external scanner, which completes this “Starbucks experience” of paying with your phone.

Hazlnut’s apps also have a built-in loyalty program, so each time a customer scans their phone to pay, they’ll also be earning points which can be redeemed for rewards. This can really help generate more regular, loyal customers customers which are even more important to stay afloat during these trying times.

QR Codes on Tables for Contactless Ordering

qr codes

Another popular way to generate contactless ordering for customers is to use QR codes codes to take customers directly to your online menu. This is done by placing the QR codes on tables or signs around the restaurant. The customer can easily scan it with their phone and instantly browse the menu while giving them peace of mind.

Hazlnut has a few great ways to make this work easier and to be more customized to your brand! For example, by utilizing Hazlnut’s custom order types, you can create an “Order from Table” option and allow the customer to select their table number upon placing the order. That way your employees will know exactly which table to walk the order to. In addition to this, Hazlnut creates a branded QR code template that you can put on every table. This allows you to make sure your brand is well represented no matter how customers place an order!

Learn more about these and other great features Hazlnut offers by scheduling a demo!

Order Interception: Fewer calls, more everything else.

To help restaurants ease the congestion of phone orders, Hazlnut has come out with a new “Order Interception” service

Phone calls to restaurants are becoming more and more of an issue, even post-pandemic after the large migration to online ordering.

In a recent study, we found that nearly 40% of all orders still come through over the phone. So, although more people are ordering online than ever before, between in-person and phone ordering, the majority of orders still require staff to handle.

Restaurant labor shortage over the past 2 years, phone orders for pickup_ have actually increased.

But therein lies the rub. Faced with a well documented labor shortage, it’s becoming harder to find the staff needed to help meet customer demand. As people are starting to come out of isolation and go back out to restaurants, they may still prefer to spend as little time as possible in public places, so phone orders (for pickup) have actually increased alongside online orders at the expense of in-person dining. But the current state of phone orders is a sad state of affairs…

Current state of phone ordering: By the numbers

We’ve found that only 82% of calls were even answered. That means a whopping 18% of calls were missed. This is most likely due to the fact that most calls occur at lunch or dinner rush, the busiest times for restaurants.

Even more alarming, of the calls answered, 74% of all calls were to place an order. That means of the calls missed, 3 out of 4 were most likely people looking to spend money at the store.

Furthermore, 24% of all calls answered put the customer on hold with the average hold time being 68 seconds!

Percentage of unanswered calls from customers intending to place an order

Phone orders today are a horrible experience. Coupled with the fact that answering phones takes staff away from helping other customers, all customers end up with a worse experience.

What is Order Interception?

To help restaurants ease the congestion of phone orders and improve the overall guest experience, Hazlnut has come out with a new “Order Interception” service.

This service works by issuing you a new phone number that you use to replace your existing number on any channel customers use to call you.

This would include your:

1. Website

2. Google “My Business” page

3. Facebook page and other social media

4. Apple maps

When customers call this new number they’re greeted with a recording welcoming them and offering to text them a link to place their order online before connecting them to the store… and that’s it! It’s as simple as that.

Send your ordering link by text

If you go back to the stat we mentioned earlier, if 74% all calls are to place an order. If you can re-direct even a small amount of these customers to your online ordering or mobile ordering page it can have a huge impact on the amount of calls actually reaching your store.

What are the benefits of re-directing these callers to your ordering site with Order Interception?

More orders

Beyond the obvious (fewer calls), you’ll experience more revenue! You’ll get more orders overall. Remember, missed calls = missed orders.

Higher average ticket sizes

Also, by moving orders online, it’s a lower cost channel with a higher average ticket size. Countless studies have proven that the average order value is higher for online orders. Customers don’t feel rushed ordering online, they have more time to browse, see that delicious dessert or maybe even add an appetizer. Furthermore, with your staff taking fewer calls, that leaves them more time to work with in-store customers or other tasks such as packaging to-go orders, acting as a food runner etc.

With the current staffing shortages and increased call-in orders, Order Interception could be just the service you need to help you and your customers adjust to the “new normal”.

Increase Ticket Size with Hazlnut

“Chips and a drink do sound nice…” is the standard reply when customers are offered an upsell, but you wouldn’t know otherwise if it is never offered in the first place. Employees will occasionally forget during the lunch rush or get caught in a conversation with the customer, and they never get the chance to recommend the add-on. Hazlnut ordering never forgets to offer a tailored upsell to the customer. This leads to more upsells added to their carts, and a higher ticket size. Historically, we’ve calculated a 15% increase on ticket size comparing dine-in to Hazlnut orders that have an upsell. On average, this is $7 added-on per ticket.

Tailored Upsell

A few tailored upsells receive a positive response more often than a single, generic upsell offering the same add-on no matter what is in the cart. Offering an item that the customer already added to their cart or offering sweet treats with a healthy meal seems a little silly. Hazlnut upsells solves this with a dynamic upsell system that reads into the customer’s cart before offering your carefully selected upsell. It will read from your list of recommended selections based on your set priorities until it finds the best match for the customer. Using a series of what we call “triggers” and “avoids”, the customer will always see the optimal recommendation to pair with their meal.

Tasteful Timing

Another key thing to consider is the fact that we don’t want to harass the customer with multiple pop-ups. To avoid this, the upsell is set to only suggest one item, and it will only appear the first time the customer goes into their cart. If they return to the menu to add something, or maybe wanted to double check something on the menu, they will not be prompted again on that order.

Upsell Photos

We have shared in the past how beneficial it is to upload appetizing food images, and the same applies to the upsell pop-up. A verbal offer from a server doesn’t have the same appeal as a mouth-watering photograph on a device. Nothing quite compares to the extra rumble in your stomach when you see the freshly fried churros drizzled in chocolate. It’s so tantalizing, there’s no way your customer can resist adding it to their cart. Ultimately, adding a few custom upsells to your Hazlnut Kiosk, mobile app, and online ordering will drastically increase the odds that your average ticket size will go up by 15% or more.

Clover-Integrated Kiosks are here with Hazlnut

For the very first time, Hazlnut is releasing a new product: Hazlnut Clover-Integrated Kiosks. We have been working on them for a while and some eagle-eyed followers on social media caught on. There are tons of benefits to utilizing a kiosk in a restaurant, so we wanted to give Clover customers an integrated option to reap these benefits. We explored those in a blog post found here but, in this post we will focus on Hazlnut Kiosks.

Perks of a Kiosk

Kiosks are helpful now more than ever before as our country faces a labor shortage; kiosks don’t take days off! Hazlnut Kiosks allow customers to place their own orders so staff can reallocate their focus onto other things. When a customer places their own order, there is also an increase in order accuracy. A request for ‘no pickles’ won’t go unheard or be misheard as ‘extra pickles’. Kiosks are gaining in popularity, and customers are starting to prefer them. In fact, customers are coming to expect them. Kiosks present the menu in a clearer way (with high resolution pictures) and ensure that any ‘add-on’ mods get charged appropriately.

Line Management

Kiosks can also be used as a line management tool where you can throttle (speed up or slow down) the influx of customers. Opening multiple kiosks can help clear a line out and get all of the orders in as quickly as possible. This allows the kitchen to get food out to the customers more efficiently and keep the kitchen from getting overwhelmed. It also means that the restaurant can operate with less seating. Since the customers spend more time in the line and are served quicker it means they spend less time at the table.

Hazlnut Kiosk Features

Hazlnut Kiosks are fully branded to the restaurant’s colors logos , just like our apps and online ordering. The kiosks follow the same menu as our other services so there won’t be any extra management needed. Since they are Clover-integrated kiosks all orders will continue to print to the correct stations. Our kiosks also can still utilize the dynamic upselling feature to increase ticket size. Using these upsells can increase ticket sizes by an average of 15% and the kiosk will never forget to offer it.

For more information email sales@hazlnut.com or to schedule a demo and see it in action click here.

Menu Management with Hazlnut

Summer is here which means new ingredients and flavors are in season and some menu management is needed. With the changing of the seasons, there are bound to be some menu changes to reflect the new inventory. Ensuring that the offerings online match the offerings in-store will require a bit of clean up and we have designed our system to make this as simple as it can be. With the Hazlnut dashboard now available on Clover stations (2018 or newer), it has never been easier to make menu changes.

Easy Menu Management

Menu changes are always going to be a part of the restaurant’s operation, the frequency of which varies. Some restaurants only change as needed when they can’t get an ingredient they need. Some change seasonally, some daily, as the chefs have the freedom to make whatever they want that day. Whatever the reason for a change, it is as simple as a few clicks to mark an item as out of stock or hide it entirely from the online ordering and app. It is just as simple to create new things or unhide items that were previously hidden.

Managing Pictures and Descriptions

When creating that new summer menu following the latest trends and available ingredients, there will probably be brand new menu items never seen before. When creating that new item, we make it simple to add a picture. As demonstrated in a previous blog post found here, we think food photography is essential. Adding a description can help the customer know what is in the item they are looking at.

Managing Modifiers

Another thing that can be toggled easily is modifiers, so those seasonal flavors can be easily swapped out. Coffee shops can easily toggle available flavor modifiers to match seasons and holidays. Peppermint mocha to chocolate-covered strawberry to shamrock to s’mores is made easy. All it takes is logging into the dashboard, finding the modifier, and turning the display on and off.

Helpful walkthroughs on how to do all of the things listed here can be found on our FAQ page under the “Menu Management” category. It can be found at the bottom of the sidebar on the dashboard or accessed through the link here.

How Hazlnut can help with catering

After more than a year of video-chat holidays, business meetings with pets on-screen, and virtual schooling, the country is returning to some level of normalcy. Businesses are re-opening, group limits are being lifted, traveling is resuming, and, best of all, we can spend time with loved ones face to face. There is a year’s worth of events to make up for, and these events need to be catered. Hazlnut already has a way to allow customers to order catering. It is built right into our existing service, and everything we are about to go over is included in current Hazlnut subscriptions at no additional cost to our partners.

Features in Hazlnut Catering

We have packed our catering option with the features already available in all Hazlnut products. This includes orders printing on the restaurants printers and being processed by the restaurant’s existing service. Any customer on their favorite restaurant’s app can easily order catering using the methods they are used to, no need to learn something new! The biggest changes are how the restaurant sets up the item in the Hazlnut Dashboard. Using the availability setting on an item the restaurant can set how many days notice they need for the item. Once set up a catering button will appear on the location within the app. A new link will be provided to post online for web based ordering.

Setting up the catering menu

Our partners can find all the tools needed to set up their catering menu in the Hazlnut dashboard. A helpful FAQ detailing step-by-step instructions on how to set it up can be found here. Just like our other services, the items will need to be added to the Clover inventory first. Once the items are made, it is time to arrange them using the Hazlnut dashboard. The Hazlnut dashboard is accessible from a computer; it can also be accessed using a Clover station on the Hazlnut app (only on Clover stations 2018 or newer).

For new and existing partners wanting to learn more, reach out to sales@hazlnut.com to set up a demo.

How Hazlnut Halts App Fatigue

App fatigue is something most people don’t actively think about, but it affects everybody. Users don’t want to download new apps and delete apps that they no longer see value in. We are constantly evaluating the causes of app fatigue and how to ensure our apps never fall victim to it.

Fighting App Fatigue

App fatigue is an interesting concept but one that is a significant threat to the app development industry. When it comes to apps for restaurants, it takes both the developer and restaurant working together to overcome the fatigue. As developers, we need to be at the top of our game, ensuring that what we build has modern top-of-the-line features and functionality. Marketing and customer engagement is essential. The perfect storm to fight app fatigue is combining a fully-loaded app that the restaurant is involved with .

Hazlnut’s Contribution

Our part is to build a cutting-edge app that makes the customers feel like there is value to having it. We look at industry leaders like Starbucks and Chick-fil-a to draw inspiration for features we add to our apps. Using this research, we regularly update our apps to keep them feeling modern with parts that fit today’s needs. We also use feedback from both the restaurants and their customers, who use the apps, to enhance our offer. We track the trends of what customers want and try to add them as quickly as we can.

Restaurant’s Contribution

With Hazlnut keeping the app in tip-top shape, the responsibility to get customers engaged on the app falls on the restaurant. A big hurdle of app fatigue is getting the customer to download the app first, so marketing is vital. Here in the office, we have a shared folder of some of the cleverest ways we have seen restaurants market their app. This has prepared us to help our clients market the app to theirs. Once the customer has the app installed, it is essential to keep them using it regularly and using it to the fullest potential. Push notifications sent out to targeted guest segments at optimal times can keep the app top of mind for the customer.

Conquering App Fatigue

App fatigue is a genuine problem, but with Hazlnut and a restaurant’s forces combined, it will never stand in the way of success on our platform. We have developed the tools needed to overcome app fatigue and encourage restaurants to team up with us to implement the resources. Tools like targeted push notification, easy reordering, and loyalty points. Once hooked customers will stay on the app to take advantage of loyalty points. If you would like to learn about more features Hazlnut offers contact sales@hazlnut.com.

5 Ways Hazlnut Will Make Your Holidays Happier

On-the-Go Ordering Simplified

With holiday savings at major retailers ramping up, the restaurant industry is preparing to feed all of these shoppers. Considering the current events, we have a huge number of people grabbing their food and drinks to-go. When people are out shopping for deals, they don’t typically want to stop and sit down. With Hazlnut it has never been easier for your customers to place an order while waiting in line somewhere else. With future ordering, your customers can place an order for pick-up from the retail store they are waiting at. Their food will be cooked, packed and ready as soon as they’ve gotten through the line, checked out and make their way to your restaurant.

Gifts and Food from the Couch

Retailers are shifting to an online ordering model for this holiday season to accommodate those who can’t go out. It is estimated that a third of all holiday shopping will be done online this year. Hazlnut is here to let you reach those customers too. Our apps and online ordering support delivery options, all you need to do is supply the driver. From the comfort of their home, customers can order gifts and have dinner delivered to their door!

Push Season’s Greetings

Thinking of a restaurant to order from to host loved ones can take a lot of energy and time. Make your restaurant the easy choice! With push notifications you can remind customers you have the best product. Customers on the run will be drawn to your restaurant because they won’t have to make that arduous choice of where to go. That quick suggestion in the form of a push notification is the only nudge they’ll need to choose you.

Catering Ease

Catering has never been easier to manage with Hazlnut. We have the ability to add a catering menu button on the app and a catering page for your online ordering. If customers are ordering catering for home or for an office, it is easy for them to customize their order and easy for you to set it up without a hassle. With future ordering limits, we close off time slots once they are full. No need to worry about all those orders being picked up or delivered at once!

Grab Valuable Real Estate

With the release of new phones like the iPhone 12 and the Galaxy S20, people will be opening boxes with new phones. This opens new real estate for your app to take up, with newfound potential to increase the number of your app users and overall customer base. At Hazlnut we want to give our clients the ability to offer their customers an app experience on the same level as Starbucks and Chick-Fil-A. Our apps have a loyalty program and one-touch reordering so you can grow your list of regular customers. Storage space on a phone is valuable and we guarantee your app is worth every byte of it.

We Think You’ll Dig Hazlnut

We Think You’ll Dig Hazlnut

Meet Hazlnut, the company that is helping to bring new-age technology to the small businesses in their community. Today, people expect to have access to restaurants and retail stores on the web.

Hazlnut is an all-in-one integrated solution that helps companies develop relationships with their customers through beautifully designed websites and custom branded apps. With Hazlnut, small businesses deepen relationships and customer loyalty with branded apps and custom websites, seamlessly integrated with your PoS.

“We’ve all ordered food online or other goods through our phones. We want to empower small brands to compete with national brands. We’re out there fighting for the little guys,” said Steven Edwards, Co-Founder at Hazlnut.

With a background in mechanical engineering, Steven Edwards has always had a desire to create something. After seeing the growth of iPhones and smartphones, Edwards saw the potential of having businesses reach their customers through the phones in their pockets.

dig hazlnut

“I had some background in coding and wanted to make apps for the digital economy. Hazlnut has grown in the last 3 years to where we now have an investor and a team of mentors at PS27 Ventures helping us to grow our company,” said Edwards.  

Richard Sikes, Co-Founder at Hazlnut, has a different story. Sikes has a background in Finance and holds a CFA. He found that in his finance career, he was using software to automate basic tasks.

“With software, if you can envision it you can build it. I have a lot of fun with what we’re doing. What we do is we come in and help lift up small businesses to compete with bigger brands like Starbucks and Chipotle,” said Richard.  

Hazlnut connects restaurants directly to customers through ecommerce, online sales, and point of sale kiosks. This saves time for employees so that they don’t have to pick up the phone as often and can focus on who they are serving in stores. Wait time decreases and every order can be filled faster. Hazlnut has been in business for 3 years and continues to grow. To follow their story and find out if you dig Hazlnut or request a demo please visit Hazlnut.com

Keep the Ice Cream Frozen with Hazlnut

Hazlnut’s apps and online ordering has features to help both restaurants and their customers with prep time and ticket printing.

“Awesome, my fries were delivered cold” is a phrase said by nobody. Most people like their food nice and fresh. Unfortunately, with the heavy reliance on third-party delivery, a lot of people are having to settle for sub-par food temperatures. Nobody is satisfied when food is delivered in a way the restaurant would have never intended to serve it to the customer. Here at Hazlnut, we set out to eliminate the risk of customers receiving their food in a way that would result in a bad review. We have developed tools that influence the time quoted to customers and the timing of when the ticket prints to kitchen for prep.

Average Prep Time

Something our system relies on is what we call the “average prep time”, which is estimated by the restaurant to provide a baseline of how long it takes to prepare an order from the moment it prints to when it’s ready to leave the door. The first thing it affects is the time quoted to the customer as the earliest possible pick-up time during check-out. A customer won’t check out at 3:00 and expect their food at 3:01, that just isn’t realistic. The ticket will then print to the kitchen letting them know they can start working on the order… Thanks to the average prep time, the order will always be prepared on-time. The restaurant will never have to worry about time-managing a future order ticket (i.e. an order that was placed in advance that morning, but is expected to be picked up in the evening won’t print until it needs to). This system ensures that when the customer comes to pick up their food, it will be as hot and fresh as it can possibly be. This also helps timing when deliveries should go out; the system will quote the customer an expected delivery time range based on what zone they are in and the average time the restaurant has determined.

Ticket Size

A default prep time sounds great, but when a huge order comes in, that same prep time is no longer accurate. A large order is going to take longer than usual to prepare, luckily Hazlnut has thought of this already. From the Hazlnut Dashboard, the restaurant can set it up to add a few more minutes of prep time to account for the size of the order. It is designed to add x amount of minutes to the default prep time per every x dollars on an order. So, it could be setup to add 10 minutes of prep time for every $50 ordered. If the default prep time was 15 minutes, and someone placed a $100 order under these conditions, the system would quote the customer a 35-minute wait time. This gives the restaurant an extra 20 minutes to get the order ready on-time.

Volume Based Prep Time

The next feature that can adjust the prep time is the restaurant’s current order volume. A benefit of our Clover-integrated software is that we have the ability to read the restaurant’s order volume trends and identify when the restaurant is slammed with an unexpected rush of customers. When the system detects that the restaurant is experiencing a rush, it will dynamically add time to the quoted prep time. If there are any future orders it will also print the ticket earlier than usual to give the kitchen enough time to make it.

Information on how prep time can be set up and managed can be found here on our FAQ. For more information, please email sales@hazlnut.com or to see it in action schedule a demo here.

Your Newest Employee: Hazlnut Restaurant Kiosks

Restaurant kiosks are the self-ordering solution your business craves. As people go back out to restaurants and return to some level of normalcy, restaurant operations have become stressed to a near breaking point.

16 months have passed since COVID-19 impacted daily lives forever. As people go back out to restaurants and return to some level of normalcy, restaurant operations have become stressed to a near breaking point. Meet Hazlnut, a company that is helping to bring new-age technology to small businesses across the country.

Meeting a Demand for a Market Heavily Impacted by COVID-19

As restaurants struggle to hire serving staff, Hazlnut provides a solution that is helping brands win big through the use of restaurant kiosks. Seamlessly integrated with popular point of sale systems, Hazlnut helps deepen customer relationships by managing lines, increasing front of house efficiency, and providing a custom dining experience that can keep up with demand without the hassle of hiring a new employee. Kiosks allow customers to place their own orders so, managers can reallocate staff to more pressing tasks like food prep. When a customer places their order through a kiosk, there is also an increase in order accuracy.

“With software, if you can envision it, you can build it. We come in and help lift up small businesses to help compete with bigger brands like Panera Bread and McDonald’s. It’s rewarding seeing local businesses rise to the competition,” said Dick Sikes, Co-Founder and CEO of Hazlnut.

The timing is just right for such a product as well.

Restaurant kiosks are gaining in popularity, and customers are starting to prefer them. In fact, certain customers prefer them. Customers like interacting with kiosks as they tend to present the menu in a clearer way (with high resolution pictures) and restaurant owners can ensure that any ‘add-on’ mods are charged for appropriately.

John & Angie, Franchisees at Larry’s Giant Subs (Florida) said, “Already planning to purchase more for our other locations!”

Hazlnut connects restaurants directly to customers through e-commerce, online sales, and point of sale systems such as Clover, which is used in millions of restaurants worldwide. This saves time for employees so that they don’t have to pick up the phone as often and can focus on who they are serving in-stores. Wait time decreases and every order can be filled faster.

Optimize your business with an integrated kiosk, website, and branded app today by Scheduling a Demo with Hazlnut. To follow their story, visit Hazlnut.com.

4 Ways that Hazlnut Pays for Itself

4 Ways that Hazlnut Pays for Itself

Hazlnut’s ordering software stands apart from most other online ordering platforms in many ways. One of those way is its flat pricing structure. You pay a set fee every month and never have to worry about processing fees, transaction fees, or any limits to how much you can use the system. This makes cost-benefit analysis very simple when deciding if Hazlnut is a good fit for you and whether the system pays for itself.

Other platforms take money out of every order, so you never really get past the cost of the service. Here are a few ways that Hazlnut helps you blow past that monthly fee and keep all the rest as profit.

Increased volume

It goes without saying that if you give customers more ways to order from you, there will be more orders placed. Online ordering is all about convenience and it’s probably the most important thing to today’s consumer. If someone has to choose between two restaurants for takeout and has no preference, odds are they will choose the one with the more convenient method of ordering. Phone orders are outdated, and no one wants to place an order in store and then wait around for it to be ready.

According to PMQ.com, if a customer places an online order, they will visit up to 67% more frequently. When someone has a pleasant experience ordering from you, they remember that and usually end up coming back.

Online ordering increases volume by providing more ways to order

Bigger ticket sizes

When a customer orders in-store, they always feel rushed. Whether they have a line behind them or a cashier looking right at them, no one wants to waste other people’s time. When a customer orders online or through a mobile app, however, they have as much time as they want to look through the menu and make their selections. Maybe they even try something new that they never knew was on the menu.

This leads to an increase in ticket size across the board when compared to in-store orders. In fact, Business Insider says that pizza chains have an 18% higher ticket size online verses orders placed in store. Hazlnut has seen similar results: a 20% increase compared to in-store transactions.

Loyalty Program

This also seems very obvious, but a loyalty program, like the one Hazlnut offers, can help increase sales far beyond that monthly fee. Think about it, if a customer orders once and earns 80 points, they’re going to want to use those points eventually. Whether they burn them all on the next visit or come back multiple times to save up for a big reward, you’re almost guaranteeing that customer is going to come back again.

Loyalty programs, like Hazlnut’s, keep customers coming back for more

Moving Customers Away from 3rd Party Delivery

3rd party delivery through GrubHub, UberEats, or others is a double-edged sword. It’s great to provide that convenience to customers, but the margins they take out (usually 25-30%) are terrible. It turns out that having your own ordering platform, like Hazlnut, can help with that. According to Hospitality Tech, 70% of customers would rather order from you than 3rd parties.

Simply by offering your own online or mobile ordering platform, a large segment of customers will begin to order from you instead. You get to keep 100% of the profits for those orders and, in some cases, this alone can completely pay for your monthly fee.

Want to learn more about how Hazlnut can help increase sales and pays for itself? Schedule a demo today!

Order Tracking

See what Hazlnut order tracking can do for you!

Ordering food through an app and online should be a simple and easy process. It’s frustrating for a customer who is picking up food when it’s not ready or even worse, hasn’t even been made yet.

With order tracking, we help companies do their part in preventing customer frustration with app and ordering online ordering. Ensuring a smoother experience is Hazlnut’s goal, and order tracking is just one small, but very helpful part of that. A customer placing their order online or via the app can track their order statuses by clicking a link in their emailed receipt, or they can opt-in to receive text messages…

How to update the order status

This tool is available to all employees with access to your in-store POS. From the Hazlnut app, they can give the customer various updates on their order status on eligible orders.

These statuses are customizable, with a recommended range of no less than 3 and no more than 5 steps. On top of that, we’ve added the ability to let the customer know if anything has changed via a Special Note.

These our a few of our recommended statuses:
Order Received/Order Placed (automatically generates when your POS receives the order information)
Making Your Order/Preparing Your Order (the kitchen is preparing the order)
Queued for Driver/Finishing Touches (driver is on their way or you’re packing up the food)
Out for Delivery/Ready for Pickup (order is on the way or ready to be in the customers hands)
Special Notes: __________ (if you ran out of an ingredient, driver encountered traffic, or are taking longer than usual to prepare the order)

Text updates

With text messaging enabled, customers can receive text updates each time their order status is changed. With the simple push of a button at checkout, customers can opt-in or opt-out of the text feature. Either way, you’ll be able to send text updates through the emailed receipt for those who decide to opt-out.

Reach out to our team today to learn more about the texting abilities and the current cost per text delivered.

In conclusion, the ability to track a food order is something all customers want the ability to do once an order is placed. There’s comfort knowing their food is being prepared quickly and it’ll be ready on time.

For more information email sales@hazlnut.com or to schedule a demo click here.

Address Verification System (AVS): Fraud Prevention

Combat fraudulent orders with address verification tools

As a business, the customer experience is always the number one priority. For customers who order ahead, that experience begins at your website, ordering site or mobile ordering app. In situations where the customer is ordering remotely (not presenting their card in-person), you may run into the risk of fraud. It’s simply unavoidable. However, there are a few things you can do to reduce your risk as consumer, and also as a business.

Image sourced from the Consumer Sentinel Network data book published by the FTC in 2020

As a consumer

The FTC published their 2020 findings for the Consumer Sentinel Network data book which found more than 2 million fraud reports were filed. Between January – September of 2021, it is estimated that more than 2 million Americans fell victim to card fraud, with a total loss calculated at $3.3 Billion. Thieves can gain access a few different ways, including:

Physical theft: This one is a no-brainer. Theft has existed since the creation of the Mesopotamian shekel, and perhaps even since Otis the Iceman. Keep your wallets and purses close to you at all times, and only hand over your card to a trustworthy person/vendor or if you feel your life is in danger. 

Requested: Suspicious phone calls, mailed invoices and phishing emails are relatively familiar methods to most people living in the 21st century. More recently, similar requests can be sent via text message, social media, and QR code scanning. Before providing personal information to anybody, make sure it is a bill you were expecting to pay or it is being sent from a trustworthy sender. 

Skimming: Magnetic strips offer little-to-no security; inserting the chip for payment is more secure. However, if a merchant only accepts swipe technology, there’s not much the buyer can do. The malware can be installed physically, but most recently it has been accessed through the network. This malware would impact the merchants’ entire point-of-sale ecosystem. Obviously, not all swipe technologies are monitored by hackers who can remotely steal card information, but as a buyer you should be aware of this risk.

Malware: Phishing emails are relatively familiar methods to most people living in the 21st century. More recently, untrustworthy links can be sent via text message, social media, and QR code scanning. Before clicking on any links, make sure it is a message you were expecting to receive or it is being sent from a trustworthy sender. 

Image sourced from the Consumer Sentinel Network data book published by the FTC in 2020

As a business

If a customer’s card is stolen or they were the victim of a card reader scam, someone who isn’t the card owner may be able to use that card information to make fraudulent purchases. As a restaurant owner, you can take extra steps to guarantee their card cannot be used on your web or app ordering by anyone other than the authorized card user.

When adding their payment, customers will be prompted to enter more than just a CVV

AVS Security

Hazlnut has a great tool to protect not only your customers, but also your business from fraudulent activity. By requiring a postal code or billing address, the person entering the card information to pay online will need to know more than what can be found on the physical card. As a business, it will reduce the amount of chargebacks received since you are taking those extra steps to block fraudulent charges at your business. 

Clover has an account setting dedicated to fraud prevention tools that allow you to automatically void suspicious payments taken from Virtual Terminal and the eCommerce API. They don’t block payments taken from your point of sale device, but it will validate additional information. By default, all Hazlnut orders require the Card Verification Value (CVV) and a matching/valid expiration date. If you would like to use the Clover Address Verification System (AVS) tools, Hazlnut can require additional fields including postal code and street address. The Clover payment system will validate this information and accept or decline the payment.

How to turn on Address Verification (Clover):

You can enable it by going to your Clover dashboard (please do this from a web browser)

1. Click on Account & Setup on the bottom left
2. Under the ‘Transactions’ group, click on Fraud Tools
3. Click to ‘Show Rules’ for the Address Verification System (AVS) group
4. Here, there are 6 options that perform different functions. 
5. Make your selection, and click ‘Save’. 

You can also visit the Clover Help Center for more information (Scroll down to “Set up fraud prevention tools”): https://www.clover.com/en-US/help/set-options-for-using-virtual-terminal 

Please let us know if you would like to prevent fraudulent transactions through Hazlnut with the Clover Address Verification System (AVS) by contacting us today.

Physical Deterrents

Also, keep in mind… Your staff are always the first line of defense. If you’re faced with an increased number of disputes and looking for options to avoid these chargebacks, you can have the staff require identification or have the customer present the credit card used at pickup. This simple, old fashioned approach can help deter future instances of credit card fraud as would be bad actors will know this is your policy and look for easier prey. At Hazlnut, you can even add this as an urgent message or a pop-up to let customers know they’ll need to bring ID and the name on the ID needs to match the name on the card at pickup.

Of course, as we mentioned in the beginning, all steps taken should consider the overall impact to the customer experience. It’s give and take. You want to add more protections to help your store avoid chargebacks while not impeding the overall customer experience.