The Silicon Valley entrepreneur who created the Flip Video camera (and flipped it to Cisco for $590 million) is taking his technical talents to the quick service restaurant industry through his new QSR called The Melt, which uses an electronic ordering and payment scheme. Patrons can place their order online and pay for it using a stored payment card. The Melt then sends the patron a QR code that represents the order. The customer simply goes into The Melt location, the QR code on her phone, and scans it. That action lets the store know that the patron is in the store and that’s it time to start preparing the meal (everything is cooked to order). The Melt’s system also knows that there’s a card on file to pay for the meal. From USA Today:
Customers at The Melt who choose to prepay online or via smartphone receive a QR code. When they walk into any of The Melt’s locations, they can skip the line and scan their order at a kiosk near the cash register.
What’s new about this? The Melt’s approach combines payment and order initiation into one step. Theoretically, the item selection process could happen at home before leaving the house, on the way to the store (no ordering while driving please), or while waiting in line. The QR code represents the order, a record that includes the items ordered, the customer’s name (presumably), and the fact the order has a payment mechanism to use once the meal preparation gets underway. The Melt is able to gather detailed data about customer preferences as well as overall store operations this way.
We continue to see more and more of these context-specific, merchant-specific approaches that build the payment method into overall transaction flow. Like Tabbedout, The Melt’s approach should deliver more convenience and speed to the process.
By the way, The Melt makes, among other things, grilled cheese sandwiches.
Click here to read more from USA Today.