Australia’s restaurant industry trends for 2022

After the year we’ve had, you’d have to be pretty brave to try and make any predictions about what next year has in store for us. But that’s exactly what we’re doing. Here’s three trends restaurateurs and managers should keep an eye out for in the new year.

Local Love Is Here to Stay

One of the silver linings for the restaurant industry this past year has been the huge wave of support from local communities who’ve got behind the people and places who make our industry tick. Lockdown ‘pivots’ and new ways of working have been embraced by customers who have gone out of their way to support small businesses and try new restaurants. Looking ahead, those restaurants who continue to invest in building community will continue to capitalise, with the opportunity to turn some of these first time customers into repeat diners. Making the most of your data and insights to supercharge your digital marketing is a great place to start.

Hospitality In the Spotlight

Keeping up with the latest requirements on capacity and distancing has almost felt like a full-time job in itself this year. But for restaurateurs and diners alike, there’s been a subtle shift in the experience with a higher level of interaction between staff and customers, and more intimacy within less crowded environments. The creativity of restaurateurs in meeting new requirements with experiences that leave a lasting impression on guests is set to continue, as will the importance of smooth online waitlists and accurate turn times. Making the most of OpenTable Experiences and our new Dining Areas feature could be just the thing to bring your restaurant’s unique personality to the fore and leave a lasting impression.

Wellbeing on a Plate

Off the back of a year when health has hogged the headlines, Australian diners’ growing focus on wellbeing looks set to continue. Whether it’s flexitarianism, intermittent fasting or the popularity of plant-based protein, the opportunity for restaurants to test the market and have an innovative agenda will help restaurants win customer loyalty. A deep understanding of your guests remains key to driving loyalty, whether it is understanding their dietary preferences, how much they spend or even their favourite dish, wine or table. Using data and insights to understand customer behaviour, whether that be spend or ordering habits, and effectively tapping into this information to market to your diners, will be more valuable than ever in keeping guests engaged and coming back through the door.

Tech to the Rescue

Over the last year there’s been an increased sense of urgency for many restaurateurs to adopt tech solutions to navigate a quickly changing space. With 2021 seeing a rise in partner solutions that prioritise safety and delivery, this trend will continue into the new year and see reservations, marketing and point of sale integration as key focuses for tech savvy restaurants. Whether it’s an online waitlist to manage capacity, or running a pre-paid experience to minimise cancellations and no-shows, having the right partner and product in place can help make the most of the momentum heading into 2022.


Find out how OpenTable can help you take advantage today.

Let’s go

Related  
Local Insights: Tap into industry trends and benchmark reporting to reopen with confidence

Local Insights: Tap into industry trends and benchmark reporting to reopen with confidence

As cities reopen and people start to dine out again, it’s difficult to gauge what’s happening locally, whether other restaurants…
Australia’s top 4 restaurant industry trends for 2021

Australia’s top 4 restaurant industry trends for 2021

After an incredibly tough year for Australia’s hospitality industry, 2021 will likely serve up similar challenges — and the beginning...
Australia’s top 4 restaurant industry trends and challenges for 2020

Australia’s top 4 restaurant industry trends and challenges for 2020

The restaurant business is not for the faint hearted. A new year presents new opportunities and new challenges for the…