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Westfield pilots mobile ordering app for mall restaurants and food retailers

The Westfield San Francisco Centre is piloting a new mobile solution enabling customers order food from several food retailers and dining establishments in the mall, with users able to schedule an order for pick-up or have it delivered.

To drive awareness, the Westfield San Francisco Centre mall is pairing well-known local food bloggers with chefs from its restaurants to create exclusive menu items only available through the Dine on Time experience. Dine on Time, which is available via an iPhone application, the mobile Web and online, enables the mall to help its food retailers stay competitive and grow their business.

“Downtown workers in San Francisco are always on the go from meeting to meeting and do not have time to wait in line for lunch,” Lindsey Thomas, vice president of marketing and communications at Westfield Labs, San Francisco.

“By piloting Dine on Time as an app for iPhone, Westfield Labs is making dining faster and more convenient by allowing people to place food orders anywhere they are for quick pick-up or delivery,” she said.

Dine on Time was developed by Westfield Labs, which is part of The Westfield Group and serves as a digital lab focused on innovating the retail ecosystem through social, mobile and digital opportunities.

On-demand dining
The Dine on Time experience was developed to bring on-demand dining access to shoppers and downtown workers by enabling them to schedule food pick-up and delivery while avoiding lines at their favorite establishments.

By providing its food retailers with technology, infrastructure and training to operate Dine on Time, Westfield hopes to help increase customer demand and loyalty without sacrificing bricks-and-mortar operations.

Using Dine on Time, consumers are able to order food from the malls Food Emporium as well as various restaurants such as M.Y. China, LarkCreekSteak, Cupola Pizzeria and Straits. The program also includes CocoaBella Chocolates and Sorabol Korean BBQ & Asian Noodles.

The digital dining solution features menus, with customers having the ability to scroll and search through full restaurant menus and order with the same customization options available when ordering in person.

The exclusive menu items available only on Dine on Time will be available for a limited time during the six month pilot program.

New types of engagement
To place an order via Dine on Time, consumers can open the app or visit the site from their desktop or mobile browser and select a dining location or search for a specific menu item.

Users can also scroll through the visual menus and pick the items that they want to add to their order.

Users also have the ability to customize their order. After selecting what they want, users pick a time for pick-up or enter a location for local delivery and then pay right from within the app or on the Web site.

“Westfield Labs is focused on innovating for the retail ecosystem by proving rich digital experiences that engage visitors in new ways,” Ms. Thomas said.

“Westfield Dine on Time is our newest pilot – a new food delivery and pick-up experience, available via iPhone App and a Web site, which expands our walls to digital users outside our physical center, driving more demand to our retailers while mitigating the impact of lunchtime rush for customers,” she said.

Final Take
Chantal Tode is associate editor on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York