T.G.I. Friday’s launched its first mobile app, designed to allow customers to use their phones to keep track of their tabs and interact while inside the restaurant, said Trey Hall, SVP and CMO at Friday’s. The app was developed with Tabbedout, a mobile wallet company based in Austin, Texas.
“Having an app is important,” Hall said. Our customers have an opportunity to pay using our mobile device, which, we believe, is unique within our category.”
The app has several functions, including helping potential guests locate Friday’s restaurants and paying for meals using their phones, Hall said. The app, Hall continued, eliminates the issue of having to wait for a waiter or waitress to close out if guests are in a hurry and it helps them keep track of what they’ve ordered. “You decide when to close that tab,” he said.
Hall described the app’s “What’s happening” section, where users can find current promotions at Friday’s. The app connects with social media sites as well, and users are encouraged to share Friday’s-related activities with their contacts, the company said in a statement.
Although the app is not yet integrated with Friday’s loyalty program, “Give Me More Stripes”—re-launched last year, that functionality will likely be added as the app develops, said Shannon Gewinner, VP of Brand Marketing at Friday’s. Using the app, guests are able to sign up and learn more about the loyalty program, but guests with existing loyalty accounts cannot sign into them yet, she said.
Gewinner said that when Friday’s began developing the app, one of the core functionalities had to be that it would serve guests currently at the restaurant. “We wanted to develop an app that had a convenience factor to it,” she said. “It had a solution to make our customers’ interactions at Friday’s much easier and as pleasant as we can make it.”
Gewinner said that this app is simply a foundation and will be built upon in the coming months The app is currently usable at 300 Friday’s stores, and will be rolled out to the rest of the franchise over time, she said.