The restaurant industry is often associated with the service industry not without reason. Restaurants are human-experienced businesses , relying heavily on customer interactions, and delivering a unique and consequential experience.
Your menu may be what draws people to your home, but your food service establishment’s customer service will be a big part of keeping them coming back. It’s also a great way to reduce your customer acquisition costs.
The costs associated with acquiring new customers can be 5 to 25 times higher than those incurred for retaining existing customers. Of course, this does not mean that you should stop trying to acquire new customers, but investing in customer service for your restaurant and ensuring that existing customers are happy will be a more reliable way to increase revenue. of your establishment.
Whether it’s personalizing the customer experience thanks to the data collected, or offering a simplified payment experience, discover all our tips to take your customer service up a notch and retain your customers.
Discover in this guide 4 strategies to adopt to reduce staff turnover, improve employee satisfaction and deliver exceptional customer service:
What is customer service for a restaurant?
This can range from answering questions about the menu to reacting to a negative review on a website. Restaurants these days have multiple customer touchpoints , which means providing consistent service across all platforms , locations, and ordering methods is paramount to maintaining a positive image. and retain customers.
Having a great online image as well as a welcoming decor is a great way to attract new customers, but it will have little effect, or even interest, if their experience is destroyed at their arrival. Once they have reached your restaurant, you will have to put the small dishes in the big ones with your specialties and your service so that their expectations correspond to reality.
8 Tips for Delivering Exceptional Restaurant Customer Service
- Regularly train your staff
- Be consistent across all customer touchpoints and channels
- Opt for intuitive, cloud-based cash register software
- Personalize the experience using data
- Know your menu and all its details
- Pay close attention to negative feedback and complaints
- Provide a seamless customer experience
- Make your checkout process easier
- Regularly train your catering staff on customer service
Regularly train your staff
While dealing with customers is second nature to some of your staff, regular and rigorous customer service training will help ensure that your entire team is in tune with the customer experience you want . offer in your restaurant.
Be consistent across all customer touchpoints and channels
The customer experience begins long before the latter sets foot in your establishment. Each piece of communication or advertising begins to create an expectation of your restaurant and how service will be provided.
Opt for intuitive, cloud-based cash register software
The tools you use can be your best ally or your worst enemy. Your customer service will depend heavily on the type of restaurant management platform you use, which means you need to find an option that’s easy to use and can adapt to your workflow.
Personalize Restaurant Customer Service Experience Using Data
How well do you know your regulars?
If you have customers who come regularly, offering a personalized touch to your service shows them that you appreciate their visit and that you take their comments and preferences seriously.
Know your menu and all its details
Whether it’s a question about evening specials or the specific ingredients of a particular dish, customers will always have questions about the menu, and staff should be able to answer them with confidence. .
Part of your restaurant’s customer service training should include a rigorous study of the menu , followed by questions and practice exercises where you ask specific and common questions of your new hires. Be sure to throw in a few red herrings to mimic what an unusual question from a customer on the menu might be.
Respond to negative comments and complaints
While no restaurant hopes to receive negative feedback, it’s part of the bread and butter of working in the restaurant industry.
When you have to deal with this type of feedback, how your staff reacts will determine whether customers will come back or go elsewhere. Most of the time, customers just need to be heard. To maintain a positive relationship, it is essential that your staff have the soft skills and empathy to listen to customer concerns and respond to them in a way that makes them feel understood and heard.
Provide a seamless booking experience
Reservations are an important part of a restaurant’s customer service experience and are essential to the planning of each service.
Taking reservations well allows restaurants to get an idea of what a particular service will look like and how to prepare for it. It is also an opportunity to begin to create a bond with the client and to know their needs before their arrival. When you receive reservations, be sure to add notes and details about the customers and their special requests.
Find out more — Opinions from the experts: what are the advantages of working with a digital reservation book in your restaurant?
Make your checkout process easier
Just because the meal is over doesn’t mean the customer service is over. Paying a bill is an important part of the experience. If the process is too complicated or the wait times are too long, customers can easily get a bitter taste.