Mobile ordering apps are the way of the future for franchises and chain restaurants, and McDonald’s is not about to be left out of the future. According to reports, McDonald’s has begun testing out a new order-ahead and mobile payment app of its very own within the ultra-select test market of Columbus, Georgia.
The “McDonald’s® Mobile Ordering” app is already alive and well for free downloading in the iPhone and Android marketplaces, but McDonald’s isn’t likely to publicly announce that fact until it plans to roll out the program nationwide. At any rate, even if consumers do choose to download it now, it won’t work until McDonald’s enables it to synch up with their nearest franchise location.
But once it does, consumers will be endowed the technology to skip lines at restaurants and order directly through the app, paying through a linked credit or debit card and confirming onsite by scanning QR codes when they come to pick up their food.
As ever, this new and growing trend is picking up steam for a reason – it’s nothing but good news for restaurants. In one fell swoop a business can track purchasing habits from individual consumers, and then use the power of push notifications to send coupons and discounts in order to entice consumers back using those same habits. Once beacons become more commonplace, McDonald’s locations could even start locating nearby consumers with installed apps and sending them targeted notifications. For the franchise hoping for maximum consumer engagement, it’s perfect.
Meanwhile, the convenience of such a tool is indispensable for busy consumers. Sure it’s a small advancement over something that’s already so simple, but few can deny that being able to order a whole saved meal plan with a few quick swipes is pretty tantalizing. In short – with every major chain that starts developing its own brand of mobile technology, the technology seems to be cementing itself further as a feature that will soon be a part of mainstream consumer life. We expect we’ll be seeing a lot more of these before too long.