Famous for its stunning views and fabulous local fare, The Store in Kekerengu is a must-visit stop for anyone travelling along the Kaikoura Coast. The family-owned business has been operating since 1994 and has grown from a tiny rural tea room and petrol station into a thriving restaurant.

You don’t make it to more than 25 years in the hospitality business without staying up to date with your market. The Store now offers not only an outstanding restaurant experience but is also a wedding venue and beachfront campsite. With an expanding company, there’s more to manage, more to track and more to monitor – which is where Paymark Insights comes in. The Store uses Paymark Insights to track sales and revenue in real time, quantify new and returning customer spends, and compare periods.

“Technology’s really important,” says co-owner Melissa Macfarlane. “My husband and I aren’t on site every day, and for us to be able to keep tabs on what’s happening is really important.”

Melissa uses Paymark Insights on her phone to keep track of The Store at any time of the day or night. She compares average sales by day and week, then uses the data to compare to changes in the store’s staff or menu. That helps her to pinpoint which changes are helping increase sales. By analysing the busiest hours of the day and days of the week over time, Melissa can more accurately predict future staffing and food requirements. That means the right staffing levels and less food waste.

Her favourite feature, however, is the ability to measure returning customers compared to new customers. It’s invaluable for a business that relies on tourists, events and local regulars.

“That’s data I’ve never been able to find elsewhere and it’s absolutely gold in terms of understanding our customer profile,” Melissa says. “We don’t have to go by gut feel any more. We can just look at our Paymark Insights app and it tells us what proportion of our customers were new versus had visited us before. It tells us how much they’ve been spending and we can really understand our customer profile a little bit better – and that helps us improve our customer service as a result.”

With the help of the latest innovations in payment technology, the team at The Store is geared up for another fantastic year in 2020.

“Paymark’s been great – real experts in their fields. That’s helpful; we need to be experts about coffee, not payments.”