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Mobile innovations continue to grow at a staggering pace and to win the game, your brand's mobile app is going to need more than just a menu, nutritional information and restaurant locations.

If you're not considering a mobile strategy, you have a lot of ground to make up: Experts predict the mobile payments industry will account for $1 trillion in global transactions by next year. Other research shows that 38 percent of U.S. consumers used a mobile coupon to purchase a product in-store, and that 35 percent of restaurant mobile apps include an ordering option.

These numbers will only continue to grow as more consumers become tethered to their smartphones. Those same consumers are demanding utility from the devices, including the ability to pay and order without waiting and the ability to accrue loyalty points for eventual rewards. They also want deals pushed to them whenever they're close to a favorite restaurant, and they want to be entertained at all times.

Chris Gardner, co-founder of mobile payments provider Paydiant, recently told us that all of these components fit together and the "winners will be the ones who get out of the gate early, try things, skin their knee once or twice and then get the mix right for their customer."

He predicts the biggest components will be loyalty, payments, offers/marketing, ordering and games/functionality. We took a look at some of the brands that are setting the pace on mobile using these features, and we predict this list will at least double a year from now. Skinned knees and all, the game is about to get very interesting.

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5 Things Restaurant Mobile Apps Must Include [infographic]


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Latest posts by Alicia Kelso
Alicia Kelso
Alicia Kelso has been a professional journalist for 15 years. Her work with and has been featured in publications around the world, including Good Morning America, Voice of Russia radio, and Franchise Asia magazine.
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