In the hospitality business, successful restaurants can run more efficiently every day with the best restaurant software in place.
For busy restaurants, or those looking to increase orders or bookings, making the right decisions about restaurant management systems and software is important.
Restaurant management platform or software is an umbrella term that encompasses different types of digital tools that help manage different parts of a restaurant business: from reservations, POS software, inventory to staffing and ordering.
Most also offer optimization capability by allowing you to create templates, establish workflows, and integrate with CRMs to centralize your entire sales process.
So, what is the best quoting software right now?
Let’s go over some of our favorite solutions in 2024!
The data we used to create this list
There's a lot of options out there. To get to a shortlist we used data from 1 million online search queries to find the most popular products in each category.
We undertook extensive research into the shortlist through expert internal interviews at Eat App, as well as an in-depth assessment of each system's features by signing up and testing the product where possible.
One problem with existing guides about restaurant software is they don't categorize systems into what they help you with.
On Capterra for example there are 570 products listed but they all do very different things which isn't very helpful. We've tried to remedy that here.
In addition, we've added relevant statistics where possible to help with decision-making.
Full-Stack Solutions for Seamless Restaurant Management
Take some of the mystery out of restaurant and labor management and finances with restaurant management solutions comprehensive tools and software.
This list features platforms designed to help you manage labor, inventory, ordering, reservations, and every other aspect of operations.
Use our research as a foundation to choose the best restaurant management software for your business.
Survey data from 10,000 businesses and 40,000 customers from Adyen found that:
Digital transformation was a $1 trillion opportunity for restaurants - encompassing both guest experience and efficiency.
Restaurant management software, when done the right way, is a surefire way to ensure a restaurant's success.
Whether it be by choosing the best restaurant POS software or even an inventory restaurant management solution or software that saves you hours of headache, restaurant management software is something that shouldn’t be skimped out on at your restaurant.
Read on to learn about the 16 best restaurant management software in 2024 and the features you need to keep running your restaurant at maximum efficiency.
Looking for specific restaurant management software solutions? Jump there directly.
Restaurant reservation software
For restaurants taking reservations, moving from the ‘pen-and-paper method of restaurant booking to a restaurant reservation system can make an incredible difference.
Using restaurant reservation software makes your day-to-day operation immensely easier and creates a better user experience for your guests.
Rather than answering phones and having to manually enter information, guests can input their own information through a website interface, mobile app, or web widget.
A good restaurant reservation setup will also feature an intuitive table management system.
This allows restaurants to receive bookings through a multitude of channels from multiple locations and also to visualize their restaurant hour by hour.
Useful Features of a good restaurant reservation system
- Reduce no-shows through custom reminders (SMS updates or time-sensitive push notifications)
- Easily make reservations online
- Manage inventory more efficiently
- Restaurant automation to jumpstart efficiency
- Predict the stock needed for upcoming days
- Allows you to allocate a certain number of tables for reservations to prevent overbooking
- Stores guest information to allow for future marketing activities such as emails, or alerts on special occasions (birthdays and anniversaries)
When choosing a reservation system for your restaurant, make sure to find one that fits your daily needs.
A good system should be easy to use and not require hours of training to master. It should also be scalable and not only just fit the current requirements of the restaurant but also the future volume.
It helps if all restaurant information is stored in the cloud rather than on the system itself to create a faster user interface experience.
Best restaurant management software in 2024
Eat App is a cloud-based restaurant management application and software that offers a wide range of features to help you streamline your front-of-house and back-of-house operations.
Some of the key features include:
- Table management: Create and manage your floor plan, seat customers, and track table status in real time.
- Payments: Process payments quickly and easily, with support for a variety of payment methods.
- Reporting: Get detailed reports on sales, labor, and inventory to help you make better business decisions.
- Reservations: Manage online reservations and seating charts, and send automatic confirmation emails to customers.
- Loyalty programs: Create and manage customer loyalty programs to encourage repeat business.
Now, what does the pricing look like:
- Price: Starts at $0 per month for restaurants that want a basic reservation system with more feature-rich packages available at $69, $139, or $239 per month depending on individual restaurant requirements.
Point of Sale System (POS)
In the past, a good POS system was inexpensive, easy to use, and had one primary function – the processing of sales data and transactions.
Nowadays, restaurant POS systems are one the most powerful forms of a restaurant management system and software a restaurant can have at its disposal.
Modern POS systems act as a computer/cash register hybrid, with the ability to process credit card payments, print receipts, display information on a user-friendly screen and operate as a service station.
With advancements in technology, formerly bulky tabletop POS systems are moving towards tablets such as iPads for increased portability.
Features you need from your POS system are:
- Ability to calculate cash for each order entered throughout the day
- Make note of cash in and cash out
- Create sales reports for various periods of time
- Record payment methods of each guest
- Calculate payroll data
- Record check averages daily
- Keep track of sales metrics
- Record and store information on recurring customers
Each POS system is different from the other based on the software, applications, and hardware.
When looking for a new POS system for your restaurant, make sure to do sufficient research based on the restaurant’s wants and needs.
Keep in mind most mobile POS systems and companies will allow you to try the system out for free before purchasing.
A few things to consider when choosing a POS system:
- Ease of use: A POS system that requires extensive training might not be the right one for you. This will lead to frustration from not only the employees but also customers who are left waiting for certain transactions to process.
- Price and quality: Make sure you know your business inside and out before purchasing a POS system. A modern system can be very costly and hence it should be able to handle your business volume and individual restaurant specifications to make it a worthwhile purchase.
- Necessary components: In addition to purchasing the software itself, do not forget to get the necessary hardware components. These include parts such as the screen monitor and any portable terminal that is linked to the main unit.
- Data tracking: Your POS system should contain all the programs required for not only the front-of-house calculations but everything related to the back of houses such as inventory reports and financial tracking.
Best POS systems in 2024
Your entire point-of-sale system, comprising integrated merchant services, hardware, and software, is called Harbortouch.
Excellent for pubs, restaurants, shops, salons, small enterprises, and a lot more.
- Price: $89 per month, per terminal.
A cloud technology provider that gives businesses worldwide access to software and computer resources to foster innovation, increase productivity, and improve efficiency.
- Price: Set up cost starts from $5,000.
A point-of-sale system designed to streamline and optimise your restaurant's operations, including pickup and delivery as well as back-and front-of-house tasks.
- Price: $169 for hardware, and 2.75% per transaction.
You can customize an ecosystem of technologies using the platform to make it work best for your company.
You can choose top-of-the-line options to integrate industry leaders for features like loyalty, reporting and analytics tools, delivery, and more with the correct multi-location point-of-sale system for your business.
- Price: Around $139/month depending on restaurant size.
Toast is a cloud-based point-of-sale (POS) system designed for restaurants of all sizes. It offers a wide range of features, including table management, order processing, and inventory control.
Toast is used by over 40,000 restaurants in the United States and is known for its ease of use and scalability.
- Price: from $0-$165. May also include hardware cost.
The POS market is one of the most fragmented software categories in the world. The above list focuses mainly on the USA, but as an operator you should explore local options as well.
Pro tip: Eat App integrates with most POS systems to help you streamline and optimize your entire guest journey.
A newer category in the restaurant management software space is Pay-at-Table software.
Designed to make it easy for guests to pay the bill faster, pay-at-table software connects to the restaurant POS software and allows the guest to see the bill by scanning a QR on the table.
Guests can then check out and pay the bill with their credit card at the end of their meal.
Pay-at-table companies also claim that their systems can increase tip sizes by up to 22%.
Best pay at table software of 2024
Europes' preferred pay-at-table solution offering a seamless dining experience.
Customers can easily order, split bills, and pay directly from their phones, reducing wait times and increasing customer satisfaction.
- Pricing: $29 per month + payment processing fees.
Industry-leading pay-at-table software in the US, recently acquired by DoorDash.
Bbot provides a robust platform for ordering, payment, and table management, helping restaurants streamline operations and improve efficiency.
- Pricing: Not available. Contact BBOT directly.
A popular global payment processor offering comprehensive solutions for businesses of all sizes. Features include online and in-person payments, subscriptions, invoicing, and fraud prevention.
- Pricing: Transaction fees apply, with various pricing plans available.
A payment processor focused on the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. Offers solutions for online, mobile, and point-of-sale payments.
- Pricing: Transaction fees apply, with various pricing plans available.
Food costing software
As a restaurant operator, the number one priority is to ensure profitability.
In the scope of a restaurant, the primary source of revenue is the food itself, and hence menu management needs to know the food cost of each menu item.
Recent surveys show that food cost is currently around 35% of all revenue for certain restaurants.
Food costing software facilitates the entire process by automating all calculations.
A good food costing software will help keep track of your inventory in addition to providing detailed analytics for each dish.
Must-have features from your food costing software
- Understand the profit margins for each dish to assess the profitability
- Highlight the money-making dishes to increase demand
- Takes labor cost and fixed costs into consideration
- Allows you to experiment with different price points to achieve maximum profitability
Best food costing software in 2024
Offers seamless integration with your existing accounting software, streamlining data management and saving you time.
Its intuitive interface makes it user-friendly, even for those without extensive software experience.
- Price: Starting at $4,000.
An enterprise-focused platform geared towards large restaurants and chains and quick service restaurants with complex needs.
It provides advanced food costing and inventory tracking features for comprehensive control over your operations.
- Price: Request demo only.
Alternatively, download this free food cost calculator Excel sheet.
Inventory management software
A proper inventory management system gives restaurant operators a crystal clear image of the current state of their inventory.
This eliminates the need for regular inventory checks, which in turn reduces the number of human errors involved, especially in the back of house operations.
With software automating the process, restaurants have more time to focus on running their business rather than completing menial tasks and are guaranteed the right stock at the right time.
Must-have inventory management software features
- Improves the accuracy of inventory orders (Never overstock or understock)
- Help keep the business organized
- Saves time by automating the inventory process
- Saves money by providing insight into which products are selling and which aren’t
- Can be integrated with POS and accounting software
When choosing an inventory management system, it is important to have a budget in mind as some products can be incredibly costly but unnecessary for your size restaurant.
It is also essential to understand the inventory challenges you face in your restaurant before making a decision.
Best inventory management software in 2024
Primarily a food cost control solution. It helps you track ingredient usage, calculate recipe costs, and monitor food waste.
SimpleOrder integrates with popular accounting software, streamlining data flow and reducing manual work.
- Price: $19 or $65 per month.
A POS-compatible solution with integrated financial tracking.
Orca helps manage orders, payments, and customer data while providing insights into sales trends and profitability.
- Price: $129/ month.
A specialized liquor inventory management app. WISK helps restaurants organize and optimize their liquor inventory, including ordering, forecasting, and cost control.
- Price: Starting at $124/ month.
If you are running a popular restaurant, or just having a busy night, then you know the importance of implementing a waitlist system.
Waitlist software allows restaurant operators to quickly add guests onto a waiting list when a restaurant is full, which are then alerted when a table frees up.
This is achieved through either a portable buzzer that the guest carries or with more modern waitlist systems, an SMS is sent when a table is ready.
Must-have Features in your waitlist software:
- Automate the waitlist process
- Gain insight into your client base
- Quick SMS functionality to send alerts to guests
Best waitlist software in 2024
A comprehensive waitlist management system with mobile creation and guest communication.
You can create waitlists online or via the app, send automated SMS updates, and set up self-service check-in stations.
- Price: From $0-$149/month depending on restaurant volume.
A simple and free waitlist app primarily focused on offline functionality.
You can create waitlists on your phone or tablet, even without an internet connection.
- Price: Free
Integrates with a multitude of other services. Allows guests to refer friends to move up the line.
- Price: $60/year.
Restaurant accounting software
Running a restaurant can be one of the most exciting and rewarding endeavors, but this will come at a price.
It is easy to overlook one of the most important elements of restaurant operations – restaurant accounting. Without proper accounting practices set in place, restaurants are destined to fail.
But what do you do if your budget doesn’t allow you to hire a restaurant accountant?
Restaurant accounting software is often cheap (sometimes even free) and easy to learn how to use. In no time you’ll be balancing your books like a pro. It's key piece of the restaurant software puzzle.
Must-have restaurant accounting software features
- Gives you real-time insights into your restaurant's finances
- Shows you both accounts payable and receivable
- Can connect with other restaurant software (POS and payroll system)
- Can be accessed easily from wherever you are
Best restaurant accounting software in 2024
Designed for freelancers, solopreneurs, and small businesses with straightforward accounting needs.
Offers a user-friendly interface and free basic features, making it an attractive option for beginners.
- Price: Free
The industry's leading accounting software, designed for small and medium businesses with complex needs.
Access it anytime, anywhere, and generate comprehensive reports to guide your financial decisions.
- Price: Starting from $5 per month (1-month free trial)
Cash flow management software
In the restaurant industry and food service industry cash is king and to keep a steady flow of money coming in to balance the money going out, you are going to need to manage your cash flow.
Just being profitable is not enough for a small restaurant, you’re going to need the right cash flow to make that a reality.
Despite it being one of the most important aspects of financial business stability, it’s often the first element restaurant owners overlook in favor of other business offerings.
If this is the case at your restaurant, find out how you can easily get your cash flow managed by using affordable cash flow management restaurant software.
Must-have cash flow management software features
- Multiple cash flow views to monitor flow on a monthly, weekly, or even daily basis.
- Ability to connect to your accounting software for seamless viewing of data.
- Project future cash flow.
- Export data to process externally.
Best cash flow management software in 2024
Pulse isn't just an accounting tool, it's an all-in-one cash flow solution designed to simplify your finances and boost your business growth. Seamlessly connecting to QuickBooks, Pulse offers a powerful suite of features to help you.
- Price: Starting from $30 per month (1-month free trial).
Online ordering software
In the post-Covid world, restaurants are needing to rely on online ordering software more than ever.
With restrictions preventing regulars from visiting their favorite establishments, it's important to offer easy-to-use alternatives that still allow your guests to enjoy your offerings.
As a result of the shift in consumer preferences, we've seen more online ordering software providers pop up that challenge the conventional approach to online ordering with all-in-one systems.
If you're struggling to get customers through the door in 2024, it might be time to think about online ordering software at your restaurant.
Must-have online ordering software features
- Website ordering
- Loyalty program
- Integrated marketing
- Order management
- POS integration
- Payment integration
Best online ordering software in 2024
A to z online ordering system with built-in loyalty, restaurant website builder, and branded restaurant apps.
- Price: Starting from $49 per month (7-day free trial)
Restaurants can set up and customize their online ordering website to match their brand with Square, an online ordering software.
It offers practical features like order monitoring, menu administration, and integrated payment processing, making online ordering easy and effective for both the restaurant and its patrons.
- Price: Starting from $0 a month.
A platform for online reservations and ordering created especially for restaurants is called Cloudwaitress.
Restaurants can use it to handle online orders, bookings, pickups, delivery, and tableside ordering using QR codes.
Small business owners may develop customized menus and websites using this platform, giving them a distinctive and customized online presence.
- Price: Plans start from $39 a month.
Restaurant CRM Systems
A restaurant CRM system is like a tech toolkit for managing how a restaurant connects with its customers.
It's packed with features to track customer info, tailor marketing messages, handle reservations, gather feedback, and run loyalty programs. Here's why it's super handy:
- Better personalization : It helps figure out what customers like, so restaurants can make their experience really special.
- Smarter Marketing: By knowing the customers better, restaurants can send out promotions that people actually want to see.
- Keeping Customers Coming Back: Cool loyalty perks and messages that hit the mark keep customers hooked.
- Making Smarter Choices: All the customer data helps in deciding what to put on the menu, how to price things, and other big decisions.
- Everything in Sync: It brings everything from bookings to customer feedback into one place, making life easier for the restaurant team.
Connects guest data from reservations and walk-in into a segment-able CRM that can used for marketing and better guest engagement.
Most popular solution amongst restaurant owners, hotels, and hospitality groups.
- Price: Pro tier required for CRM at $239 per month.
A restaurant CRM targeted at groups, hotels and enterprise hospitality.
- Price: around $700 per month.
Restaurant analytics software
Restaurant efficiency is the main driver of profitability in your business. Restaurant analytics software will help you identify different opportunities to improve efficiency.
Whether your goal is to sell more, improve employee productivity, cut costs, or even reduce fraud and deter theft, analytics restaurant software will allow you to deep dive into your restaurant to see all aspects of operations.
Important restaurant analytics software features:
- Creates a custom profile for each guest to help you understand your clientele
- Better understand your menu and make decisions based on the data
- Know what each server is doing and how well they are doing it
Best restaurant analytics software in 2024
Fishbowl goes beyond basic inventory management, offering in-depth econometric pricing, digital menu optimization, and competitor auditing to help restaurants maximize profitability and stay ahead of the curve.
- Price: On request.
Restaurant menu-building software
A well-thought-out menu is one of the most crucial elements of any restaurant. Without a menu, there is no way for customers to know what other menu items they can order and at what price.
It is essential though to have a menu that not only follows menu engineering best practices but also accurately reflects the personality of the restaurant.
What do you do if you don’t have any restaurant menu design experience and can’t afford to hire a professional designer?
Lucky for you, the internet is full of both paid and free online restaurant menu makers that can easily do the job for you.
Important restaurant menu-building software features
- Drag & drop menu builder
- Support for daily menus
- Fully customizable
- Promote special offers
- Support for QR code menu
Best restaurant menu-building software in 2024
Online menu maker that lets you instantly create your restaurant menus like a pro.
- Price: Starting at $9.75 per month.
Restaurant PMS integration software
It's simple to see how every facet of labor management create your operations contributes to your success whether you own a hotel, motel, bed and breakfast, or any other type of lodging property.
Guests are checked in and out quickly with a well-run front desk. Cleanliness and comfort are maintained in rooms by competent housekeeping staff.
Travelers can make reservations without issue thanks to a well-designed online booking agent. But just because you know how each of these components interacts with the others to enhance the guest experience doesn't mean the software you use to automate them does, too.
Your property management system (PMS) may be operating effectively enough to maintain the efficiency of your daily operations, but unless you integrate it with other tools, you won't be getting the full benefit.
Information is automatically shared between systems when a PMS is integrated, saving you time and removing problematic redundancies.
Important Restaurant PMS Integration Software features
- Two-way communication between your PMS and your integration software
- Your integration collects key information about your guest: stay duration, number of guests, room number, and any special tags assigned on your PMS
- Easy-to-use guest-facing interface. Important to consider if you are integrating with a booking channel and want to maintain the guest experience
Best restaurant PMS integration software in 2024
This platform has over 500 third-party digital tool integrations in addition to end-to-end reservation management and accounting capabilities.
The extensive list includes well-known programs like Google Docs, MailChimp, and Salesforce.
Utilize Eat App's PMS integration to address some of the most significant issues facing hoteliers.
To give your guests the most memorable experiences possible, cut down on time spent on administrative tasks and connect the customer journey from check-in to check-out.
Website builder apps
Without requiring a lot of technical expertise, restaurant owners can create and modify their websites with the help of these user-friendly apps.
To create restaurant websites, these programs offer a plethora of customization choices, drag-and-drop capabilities, and ready-to-use templates.
Wix is a user-friendly web-building tool that is cloud-based and allows users to design and create restaurant websites.
Important elements like domain registration services, dependable website hosting, and website-building tools are all available to users with Wix.
Squarespace is a website builder application and hosting platform that gives customers access to a range of tools for website creation and management.
A variety of editable templates are available to users, providing a great foundation from which to create a unique website.
Restaurants can create websites with UpMenu, an amazing restaurant management solution.
With the help of this free software, restaurant owners can design and modify a website that is in line with their brand without needing any technological expertise.
To create a restaurant website, the user must select one of the premade templates that are available, add information and photographs, and then publish the website on their domain.
Employee management system
A simple and comprehensive solution to managing employees that takes into consideration everything from payslips to requesting time off.
Allows restaurant owners to ditch the old-fashioned Excel or paper-based method in favor of faster and most likely cloud-based service.
Customer satisfaction software
Allows restaurant owners to get valuable information from guests which in turn will help make strategic decisions to increase customer satisfaction.
Customer loyalty software
Gives guests an incentive to return to your establishment by providing them with discounts and free meals after a certain number of visits.
It also helps boost the restaurant's reputation through word of mouth.