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Square for Restaurants - What is the state of the restaurant industry?

Hi Seller Community!

 

This is Michelle from the Beta team. I am working with the Square for Restaurants team to help them learn more about the current state of the industry. We want to build the best possible product to be a partner to your restaurant for years to come. In order to do that we need to know about how you and your business are doing.

 

There are two actions we’d like you to take on this post:

 

  1. Where are you located, what is your restaurant called, and what is the state of your business and the industry around you?
  2. Reply to other posts you see here to ask questions amongst your peers.

 

Feel free to share pictures, stories, questions ideas or anything you like.

 

Please use the reply button below to respond to items 1 and/or 2!

 


 

Update, December 2020: Square for Restaurants is now available in Canada! 🎉 Read our Product Update to learn more or get started with get started with Square for Restaurants online.

 

Michelle
Beta Manager, Square
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Message 1 of 19
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18 REPLIES 18

1. Winnipeg Manitoba

Message 2 of 19
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Admin

Hello @Dwarf! How are things in Winnipeg? Have you been able to reopen or serve customers outdoors?

Helen

Seller Community Manager, Square

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Message 3 of 19
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Hi. First time posting! I'm excited Square for Restaurants is hopefully coming to Canada soon. Our restaurant is called Hickory Street. We opened Feb 29, 2020 in a little village in Southern Alberta, Canada (Stirling). We're 20 minutes outside of Lethbridge, and everyone thought we were crazy to open a restaurant, much less in a little village. We sell Southern smoked BBQ and claim to have the best brisket this side of Texas. We opened our doors 2 weeks before the COVID shutdowns took effect here. We were able to pivot and offer delivery twice a week to Lethbridge, which really helped get our food into our target demographic's mouths, which has played really well for us now that we are able to open our doors. We have hit our Year 1 projections and we haven't even been open 4 months! Needless to say, we are beyond thrilled with our early success, and cautiously optimistic about the future.

 

One of our biggest struggles with Square right now is it's difficult to track our inventory properly. We sell a side dish (mac and cheese, coleslaw, etc.) with our meats and sandwiches, but with online ordering, we can't accurately input our inventory for the online store. If there was a way to create a master library we could then pull recipes from, that would be super helpful. For instance, if we could input at the beginning of the day that we have 60 racks of ribs to sell and 25 sides of coleslaw, everytime we sold a rack of ribs and a coleslaw, it would take those individual items out of the inventory. I realize there's a workaround where I could just add a menu item for the side with no charge attached, but with user error, I would hate for one of my staff to enter that one if someone orders it a la carte, rather than charging them for the side by itself.

At any rate, I'd love to help with whatever I can with the Canada testing! Look forward to learning more about how I can use Square more effectively.

Message 4 of 19
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Admin

Welcome and thanks for your post @PitMistress and for your detailed feedback about managing your inventory. It's a great help to the Restaurants team!

 

What a time to open a restaurant! I'm glad to hear you were able to pivot to delivery. Do you offer curbside pickup too? Are there other restaurants in your village or Lethbridge that are open? 

Helen

Seller Community Manager, Square

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Message 5 of 19
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So yes, we did offer curbside pickup. We also offered delivery twice weekly to Lethbridge and once weekly to Raymond (~10 minutes away), and that at least got food into peoples' mouths, so once we could open they would know how awesome we were!

Message 6 of 19
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Admin

Great idea!! 😋

Helen

Seller Community Manager, Square

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Message 7 of 19
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Hi, 


We're located in Nanaimo and Parksville, BC. Our restaurant name is Huong Lan Vietnamese Restaurant and Lan Vietnamese Express. Our business is running good. Tough to open a second location just before the pandemic but people wants to eat out. There's a few restaurants closed down. Staffing is tough as people are still collection their government cheque. Food cost has gone up a bit. We increased our menu prices and people don't seem to mind. 

 

We're using your Square payment for our restaurant and Square POS for the Express location. We don't want to use a third party like Light Bistro or Toast as we have to retrain everyone when Square restaurant come out. We're waiting anxiously for Square restaurant as we are sick of the legacy POS (Squirrel & Pixel point).

 

Your curbside pickup option saved us when the economy reopened. Many customers complimented on how easy it was to order. 

 

Features we would like to see in Square restaurant: 

-Floor plan

-Food modifiers

-Inventories tracking w/ food cost analysis

-Split bills option that's easier than the one in Square POS

-Dine in, Take out, & Delivery toggle

 

If it takes too long, I might have to sign up with 3rd party POS like touch bistro. I rather just have one system and sign up with Square Restaurant. 

 

When are you bringing Square restaurant to Canada?

 

Please bring it to Canada soon!!!! 

Message 8 of 19
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Beta Member

Hi! Located in Quebec, on an island named Isle-aux-Coudres. As for right now it goes really well as we have a lot of tourism. Tought it would be better with square for restaurant! I know that in Quebec we have something called an SRM (Sales Recording Module) that log all our transactions as we are obligated to send report to Revenu Quebec each month. Is it something you are considering to be compatible with? I would love to work with you.

Message 9 of 19
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Alumni

Hello @SamuelDesgagnes,



While we do not have a public timeline for updates to our Square for Restaurants system, our teams are constantly looking through our seller's feedback to make necessary improvements and we will be sure to let you know if anything ever changes or if new updates are released.

Alex_
Community Moderator, Square // Moderador de la Comunidad, Square
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Message 10 of 19
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This is a functionality with the US systems - is there a reason this isn't in Canada yet? Seems like it should be pretty straightforward to bring it across the border, but perhaps I'm missing something. It would really help me ensure I'm running my business more effectively.

Message 11 of 19
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We are a small wood fire pizzeria , would like to add a indoor sit area and patio with bar , the square restaurant would be a great addition to what we have already, he only problem I’m having is the side dish that go with say my ribs do not get tracked in inventory properly, also this year a lot my clients have asked if there be a app they can down load instead of always going online to order , 

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Message 12 of 19
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Admin

Thank you for sharing @11blake! As soon as we have any updates about new features or apps we will let you know. I really appreciate your patience in the meantime. 

Helen

Seller Community Manager, Square

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Message 13 of 19
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Beta Member

Ottawa, Ontario! We are The Bridge Public House, located inside the Rideau Sports Centre.  

 

We recently switched our POS from touchBistro to Square. We are loving how easy it makes daily cash outs, with the automatic bill closing, it leaves no more room for server errors when adding a tip etc.  It has been great, but we are dying for some of the features we know US Square for Restaurants has. Ie- Item splitting and SEATS! This would make splitting bills for tables so much easier!

 

We’d also love the option to add a food cost, to track inventory, vs sales, vs food cost percentage etc. 

 

We started operating with only takeout, which is when we moved to square as they had online ordering that Touch Bistro didn't have. Since then, we decided to keep it for our full service restaurant, and with a few tweaks, its been working well. Square for restaurant will hopefully fix these issues!

Message 14 of 19
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Beta Member

Hi I own a restaurant in downtown Toronto. We've used Square for many years for our cafe location,then expanded with another location offering a full restaurant experience. While we were on the fence about switching to more of a full-service solution, such as Squirrel or Silverware, the pandemic hit.. Square's online ordering features have definitely been a lifesaver. But now that we've opened for full service again, some of the original frustrations with the limitations are starting to set in again, namely the lack of (1) seat assignments (2) item splitting (3) auto gratuity for larger parties. Yes, there are workarounds for most things, but I am still failing to understand why Square for Restaurants hasn't been released to Canada yet... probably due to the tableside payment processing side.. ?

Message 15 of 19
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Hi I own a restaurant in downtown Toronto. We've used Square for many years for our cafe location,then expanded with another location offering a full restaurant experience. While we were on the fence about switching to more of a full-service solution, such as Squirrel or Silverware, the pandemic hit.. Square's online ordering features have definitely been a lifesaver. But now that we've opened for full service again, some of the original frustrations with the limitations are starting to set in again, namely the lack of (1) seat assignments (2) item splitting (3) auto gratuity for larger parties. Yes, there are workarounds for most things, but I am still failing to understand why Square for Restaurants hasn't been released to Canada yet... probably due to the tableside payment processing side.. ?

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Message 16 of 19
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Beta Member

I'm working with a new facility that is hoping to open mid fall. We have plenty of different operating modes. We will primarily be a liquor venue, but will be partnering with Food Trucks and neighbouring restaurants to serve food inside our space.

 

We will be primarily counter service once COVID subsides, but for now we'll do table service with Square Terminals, so having the button style screen instead of product lists would be nice. The terminals will send tickets to a bar, where drinks will be made. 

 

Table/seat numbers and split tickets are super important to us

 

With Food Trucks, we think we'll just run a long ethernet cable out to a "portable" kitchen printer that is setup exactly for this purpose. We're experimenting with ways to get tickets to the off-site restaurants. 

 

We are trying to figure out a way to do online ordering for guests internally, so they can scan a qr code and order from their phone, and have them put in a table or seat number. 

 

Having an online menu that could be linked to a QR code would be great, and if there are stock issues, specials or deals going on, they can be dynamically updated.

 

Since we have flexible seating, it would be cool to have an RFID tag under the table that the Terminal could read to get table number.

 

Tracking liquor inventory is very important as we have to report it to the Government. 

 

Table/seat numbers and split tickets are super important to us.

 

We have purchased a ton of hardware already (8 stands, 8 terminals and 4 kitchen printers) so we're gunna make a go of it with the regular app, but we'd be down to Beta test the Restaurant app, since we haven't opened yet!

Message 17 of 19
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Beta Member

Where are you located - Windsor, Ontario

 

What is your restaurant called - The Barbershop BAR (Bartenders, Barbers and Baristas!)

 

What is the state of your business and the industry around you - Competitive!! We need Square for Restaurants to allow us to maximize any profits we can find through the use of the updated inventory system available through it! We need bundling - like that of ShopVentory - most especially!!!

James Wilkinson
Message 18 of 19
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Admin

Hi everyone, I'm just dropping in here to share the good news that Square for Restaurants is now available in Canada! 🎉

 

For more information visit the Square for Restaurants site, or read the Get Started with Square for Restaurants Guide  in our Support Centre. Thanks for your patience while we worked to bring this software to Canada!

Helen

Seller Community Manager, Square

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Message 19 of 19
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