Dark Kitchen – The New Virtual Restaurant
The trend of food delivery around the world introduced an entirely new concept called the dark kitchen. While the majority of consumers order their meal through third-party delivery services like FoodPanda, CareemNow, Cheetay, and so on, most of them might not even have a single clue that their meal was prepared in a dark kitchen. So what is this dark kitchen?
Many Names, Many Faces, One Concept
Dark kitchens are also commonly known as cloud kitchens, ghost kitchens, virtual restaurants, or delivery-only restaurants. While we may refer to them by different names, the concept of the dark kitchen remains the same: these places sell food items only through delivery. Instead of cooking for dine-in customers, ghost kitchens prepare food for delivery-only, so their product that is prepared there can only be consumed elsewhere.
Without any doubt, It is the success of online ordering apps such as FoodPanda and CareemNow that paved the way for virtual kitchens. These intermediary delivery channels make the process simpler for food businesses to easily connect with customers and quickly deliver meals to their doorstep.
Why Choose a Dark Kitchen?
What makes a dark kitchen so appealing? How is it different from common restaurants?
Dark kitchens decrease a restaurant’s operational expenses and the costs of running a conventional restaurant. Without a storefront, the amount of money invested in a virtual restaurant is small. Not only the rent is minimised, but there are also no expenses for décor, signage, dinnerware, servers, or hosts – just because you don’t need them anymore. The kitchen is the only space where you put money, so depending on your budget, you can go for some advanced equipment and technology.
Since dark kitchens are mostly unbranded, you can work multiple concepts out of the same arrangement. This spatial economy opens up new revenue opportunities. You can work on a new concept based on what’s trending, like hot-fried chicken, without any major cost since you can utilize the same ingredients and equipment from your other brands.
Attract New Audience
Dark kitchens can help you find a different type of consumer than what a conventional restaurant would offer. Loaded with convenience, these customers focus on food quality and how quickly it can get delivered. The dark kitchen space allows operators to zero in on things like ingredients, food preparation and cook times, packaging, and delivery logistics rather than focusing on whether or not the restrooms are clean. Virtual restaurants cater to a bigger audience with a strong online presence. These concepts also supply guests the instant gratification of ordering a meal at the click of a button.
With online platforms intervening, all interaction between the restaurant and the customer is eliminated. Oscar, the smart point of sale service providers, has the ability to minimise the gap of management with an integrated POS system for your dark Kitchen. Whether it’s a single brand or a multi-branded space, Oscar will take care of your virtual restaurant.
Hands down, cloud kitchens are the new virtual restaurants and they must harness revolutionary technologies and new marketing strategies to appeal and keep their demanding audiences.