How To Improve Restaurant Service and Win Back Customers
Before entering a restaurant, most customers and restaurant guests already have certain assumptions and expectations in mind. Customers rely on restaurants for good service and great guest experience, which includes tasty food and the type of service attached to it. The Restaurant manager, owners, kitchen staff, and other employees all share the duty of the restaurant operations and providing excellent customer service. Good service and excellent dining experiences will help your customers get a positive impression and help keep them coming back.
How To Improve Restaurant Service
In this article, you will learn how to take your restaurant’s service to the next level and deliver a truly unforgettable experience for your customers.
Tips To Improve Your Restaurant Service
The following are tips that will help you deliver a stellar restaurant service, have a positive impact on your customers, and ensure continuous customer experience improvement:
Training Employees for Excellent Customer Service
Excellent customer service is necessary for any restaurant, and any restaurant that fails to provide good customer service runs the risk of losing valued customers. Negative experiences at your restaurant will affect the bottom line, therefore it is essential to always work to improve restaurant customer service. The goal of training employees and other house staff is to make the customers happy. The owner and restaurant management are responsible for training staff members. Train your staff and inform them of your current customer service policy and be informed of how to handle constructive feedback from customers.
- The food should be served and cleared from the diner’s left. However, the drinks should be poured and refilled from the right. Avoid bad service.
- Whenever there is a need for any staff member to interrupt the customers, they should be polite.
- Clear plates, bring the check, and process it promptly.
- Encourage and train them to think about customer care, which goes beyond basic service. The care concept includes such simple steps as smiling at your customers and greeting them promptly and understanding their needs before them saying like refilling water glasses and keeping extra napkins.
Deal With Customers Complaints and Concerns
Everyone who has anything to do with restaurants knows the famous saying, “The customer is always right.” Any problem or issue in the aspect of customer care must be handled on a top priority basis, to avoid bad customer reviews. While some customers prefer to complain on social media platforms, as it is a digital world, it is crucial that the company’s management team promptly respond to customer comments with kindness and respect when customers post complaints online.
Remember to always:
- Acknowledge customer complaints. Allow customers to freely air their complaints and give their words your full attention when they want to complain about your restaurant’s service.
- Respond Immediately to customer concerns. Giving employees the power to handle customer disputes is the best and most cost-effective solution for handling issues. First, say you are sorry to the customer, and then do everything you can to put the problem right. The key is to remain calm and try to keep the situation from getting worse.
- Offer Freebies. Compensation is a wonderful apology. Even giving away a free dessert or a small appetizer will score you big points in the customer service department. Small ways to show appreciation for your customers will increase their positive thoughts about your establishment.
Encourage Effective Communication Between Staff Members
The key rule of exceptional service in any high-end establishment is that everyone is in constant communication. Managers should provide education on effective communications for their employees. To ensure all members of the staff are coordinated, regular meetings should be held.
To guarantee speedy service to your customer base, there should be effective communication between the wait staff and the kitchen staff, ensuring that the food is delivered as soon as it is ready. Sharing responsibilities leads to better organization. Keep the position of ticketing and ordering together by having one person give the instructions.
Your restaurant manager should approve of any work shifts that are switched by employees. Short staffing is caused by a lack of communication, so this will correct that problem.
Ensure Accurate Wait Timings
One of the significant turn-offs that lead to poor restaurant service is delays. Be it a delay in seating customers, offering the menu, taking the order, bringing in the food, or the bill; time lags can ruin the customer’s experience. For excellent restaurant service, the wait timings should be accurate.
- Inform customers about the wait time. If there are already people in line, and you think it will take about an hour to get the next group of customers seated, inform them of this. It is better to have shorter wait times for your customers, and if you do not, they will be disappointed. In advance, customers should be told about a time-consuming dish.
- Keep them busy while waiting. As a customer service culture, most restaurants serve free bread and other goodies to their customers while they are waiting for their food. Why don’t you put a TV in the waiting room, so that their wait does not bore them? Ensure that your waiting room is Wi-Fi-enabled. You can also keep customers entertained by putting table games in your restaurants. This also proves to be one of the most effective customer service techniques.
Maintain Hygiene and Cleanliness in Your Restaurant
Having a good reputation and cleanliness can ensure that you and your customers are safe and enhance customer loyalty while appearing trustworthy to your guests as well. If the customers receive their food on dirty plates, they will be upset. The issue of unhygienic bathrooms is a primary grievance of diners. Customers need to have a positive impression of a restaurant for your business to flourish. The FSSAI has developed protocols on cleanliness for restaurants, which all restaurants are expected to meet. Pay close attention to hygiene and cleanliness in your restaurant because your guests will judge your restaurant based on them.
Use Technology for Better Restaurant Service
The use of technology is increasing in all industries alike, and in this digital age and with so many new restaurants opening, the restaurant industry is getting competitive at each step. Automating restaurant operations helps in improving its efficiency which in turn will enhance your restaurant service.
Some of how technology can be used to improve your restaurant service quality include:
Online Restaurant Reservations
If you have a small dining space and your customers are reserving seats ahead of time, your restaurant is set for success. If the process of digital table reservations is done for the restaurants, their customer base will rise. Using a single interface, restaurants can view all their guest information, which allows them to reserve space for reservations. Waiting times are more accurate for walk-in customers and those who have previously made reservations.
Customer Relationship Management
CRM technology now helps restaurants to boost customer engagement through loyalty programs and other options. Restaurant CRM that is centralized lets you get important customer data that contains information like names, how often customers visit, preferences, and average spending.
You can improve customer service by taking advantage of the captured data with POS (Point of Sale) integrated CRM, which provides knowledge of customer demands and behavior and lets you make informed decisions. Waiters can get insight into customer ordering history in the POS and can upsell to customers.
Customer Feedback Management
To become better at serving your customers, feedback is extremely important. You can improve your ability to gather and use feedback via the use of modern technology. Instead of the standard feedback form, you can utilize a feedback management app that makes more targeted requests for customer feedback on an order-by-order basis, tailored to the mood of the location and the quality of service. The report also assists you in knowing how your dishes are performing. Feedback app sends customer information to the CRM to streamline updates and to ensure all information is current.
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