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[Startup Article] Catering: using digitisation to get closer to customers

#Bonnes Pratiques #Startup

Since 19 May, restaurants in France have been open again. Customers are rushing back, but there is still some apprehension. Far from the negative aspects that we often attribute to it, digitisation will help to recreate social bonds.


COVID-19: The catering sector has been hard hit

Since the start of the health crisis in France, in February 2020, the catering sector has suffered greatly. After being forced to close their establishment for long periods, then being faced with sanitary restrictions (social distancing, contact tracing registers, etc.) and a drop off in tourism after lockdown, restaurant owners have seen a 38% fall in turnover and a 35% reduction in attendance compared with 2019.

A pandemic that keeps going…

Two years ago, few people in the hospitality and catering sector were interested in or believed in the digitisation of the customer experience. We often heard people say: “Digitisation means losing the human touch and reducing jobs. Digitalisation is the beginning of the end”. Whereas, now, we realise that this is not the case. During this period of pandemic, digitisation and the use of contact-free technology will make it possible for economic and social activities to be resumed. The solutions that have emerged recently will help to make it possible to comply with the sanitary measures and the social distancing put in place by the authorities to efficiently fight against COVID-19. And, as 95% of French people have a smartphone, anything is possible, provided that the solutions are sufficiently well designed so that any user, of any age, can use them. Ultimately, digitisation is THE solution!

Edgar: The COST-FREE solution for restaurant owners

Edgar is a smart QR-code menu solution with a range of additional services that will allow restaurant owners to re-open with peace of mind.

- An interactive digital menu

A restaurant owner can create their free QR-code in 3 minutes on They can then enter their menu and their meal deals very easily, add photos of the dishes, descriptions, etc. As for customers, when they arrive they just need to scan the QR code that is on their table. They can read the menus and meal deals, directly on their phone that are automatically in their own language.

- An integrated contact tracing feature

Since 2020, French restaurants must keep a register of the customers in their establishments to be able to contact them in case of a reported infection. This practice, which has since been adopted in other European countries, makes it possible for the restaurant to be able to quickly identify the customers who were at their establishment at a particular time in case somebody tests positive for COVID-19. Every customer enters their contact details by hand in a register. We could do better in terms of social distancing... With Edgar, the register becomes digitised. After having scanned the QR-code, the customer identifies themselves directly on their smartphone. No register and no shared pen are necessary—social distancing rules are complied with. The data are stored temporarily according to the GDPR.

- Mobile payment

At the end of the meal, to pay the bill, the customer scans the QR code once again. They can then pay all of the bill or split it. To ensure that this service is free to restaurant owners, the electronic payment terminal fees are covered by a little mandatory tip from the customer. Mobile payment therefore avoids unnecessary contact by customers paying directly from their table.

- A better e-reputation

Hospitality is the sector that has been the most affected by e-reputation, be it good or bad. When we know that is takes on average 12 positive reviews to cancel out the effect of one bad opinion, encouraging people to give positive opinions is now a major issue. With Edgar, we encourage satisfied customers to share their experience thanks to a simplified review process. 30 minutes after having scanned the QR code, the customer receives a notification to rate their experience, from 1 to 5 stars. Opinions that are pre-filled in a smart way and good reviews are published in 2 clicks on all social media.

- A recovery for local tourist activity

As the crisis is having a lasting impact on the tourist sector, we had the idea of suggesting to customers in restaurants activities that are located near by. In this way, customers have the possibility of booking, paying for and receiving a ticket directly on their phone.


Why choose Edgar?

- Its customisable (logo and colours of the establishment)

- No downloading

 - Its multilingual

- No subscription necessary

- Its completely free



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