“OK, thank you. We’re looking at about a 40-50 minute wait. Will that be ok?” Well, what choice do you have if you really want to eat there? The old adage is that everyone wants to go to the crowded restaurant, and nobody wants to go to a restaurant with an empty parking lot. So the crowded gets more crowded. What do you do if you’re in that 50-60 minute (you know it’s always longer) wait?
Would You Join a Stranger at Their Table?
Better yet, would you invite a stranger to join you at your 4-top table at which you only have 2 or 3 people sitting? That’s what SeatCheck is doing to solve the problem of long wait times at popular restaurants. How many times have you gone to a sports bar to watch that game, only to be told there are no seats when you can plainly see half a dozen booths with just 2 people in them? Think of SeatCheck as “Tinder for filling empty seats at your table at a restaurant.”
Two Birds with One Stone
There’s a big assumption in SeatCheck’s proposition: people already at a table will willingly share their table with a complete stranger. Assuming their assumption is correct – and the SeatCheck app is currently available in the App Store to test that assumption – the service could also solve the problem of low table turnover for restaurants.
While the assumption is a big one, in today’s sharing economy, what aren’t we sharing? We’re paying to have a perfect stranger that we summon via the internet to pick us up at our home or business in their own car. Sharing a table at a crowded (by definition) restaurant seems harmless.
Users will login using Facebook (or other social media in the future) so if you’re already at a table, you’ll get a notification that someone wants to sit with you. You can then check that person out and “swipe right” (so to speak) if you want them to join you. If not, no hurt feelings.
At Pitch Practice, we advised Nick to slow down a bit in his speech and to tell a short story that will bring his offering to life. Everyone has waited for a table at a restaurant. SeatCheck is disrupting the waiting line with the sharing economy. The only thing missing, again if their hypothesis is correct, is how SeatCheck will make money. Any guesses?