Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Starbucks Adding Online Pre-Ordering

No, Starbucks customers are not just online hogging the bandwidth of the chain's free wifi.  They are also pretty tech-savvy and used to dealing with online- and mobile apps.  Over 10 million Starbucks customers use the company's mobile app to pay for their purchases.  

So the company, now adding more food items and pastries requiring a bit of preparation time before serving, is getting ready to add another capability.  Soon you will be able to peruse the menu of the Starbucks location you prefer, order and pay in advance, and pick up your finished order without the long wait in line. There are marketing considerations to keep in mind, but the policy certainly dovetails with the coffee giant's business plan of concentrating on building more drive-through capacity.

Hunter Communications Original News Source:

Link to article:

Excerpt: "For its next trick, Starbucks may have your order ready before you enter the store.

After reporting strong fourth-quarter earnings yesterday, CEO Howard Schultz confirmed plans to allow customers to place orders through Starbucks’s mobile app and pick them up later. 'I can tell you that we understand the value that that will create for our customer base,' Schultz said in reply to a question on the company’s conference call. He added, 'You can assume that over time we will lead in this area.'

Starbucks first mentioned 'mobile ordering' to investors in 2012, but didn’t elaborate on its intentions.

Pre-ordering would make sense for Starbucks as the coffee giant increasingly focuses on food, which is its fastest-growing segment. ”Everything we’ve seen so far encourages us that we’re just beginning to go after what is a big, big food opportunity,” CFO Troy Alstead said yesterday. Food is more complicated to prepare than coffee and can slow down service in Starbucks stores. 'We’re definitely looking to increase the speed of our lines,' spokeswoman Linda Mills told Quartz today.
Some restaurant chains, like Chipotle, already allow mobile pre-ordering. Starbucks’s big advantage in this area would be that so many customers—over 10 million—already use its mobile app to pay for their orders."

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