1. Set Legit Expectations
Never give false promises to your customers. This essentially means that do not set an expectation that you cannot meet. Clearly explain what they should expect from a particular dish, an event, or the discounts and offers conferred by your restaurant. Although you can attract new customers, by hosting exciting events or offering catchy discounts, you will hardly be able to retain them and get them to revisit your restaurant, unless you live up to your promises.
2. Train Your Waiters And Servers Well
It is your waiters and servers who will be in direct contact with your customers. Hence, training them well will be your first step towards ensuring that your restaurant customer service turns out to be the best.
The main things that you must give due importance while training your waiters are:
- They Should Not Be Pushy: When trying to upsell certain dishes to customers, make sure that your waiters are not pushy. While upselling is vital for a restaurant, it is an art that not all can master. Train your staff to subtly upsell the items, while not being pushy or overbearing. No customers will like, if your staff literally forces, with a smile, to order something that they don’t want to order.
- Let Your Staff Know That Customers Need Privacy: None of us would like, if a staff hovers around our table after the order is taken, only with the hope that we would order more. Hence, let your staff know that customers need privacy and make sure that your waiters are not very infringing on the personal domain of your customers.
- Be Upfront with Your Customers: If there was an unexpected delay in the kitchen, the wait staff should tell the customer. The best thing to do is to explain the problem in detail and ask if there’s anything you can do to make up for the client. You can offer a free drink or an appetizer as compensation. However, if you don’t have such offers, create one or provide free professional time.
- Ability to Handle Disgruntled Customers: No two customers in this world are the same. And hence, one day you might receive a polite customer and the next day a rowdy one. Your staff must be prepared for the worst, always. But, in no way can a staff of yours lose his cool.
3. Provide Consistent Products
Food is the main reason why people visit your restaurant. Hence, consistency in products is an integral part of the restaurant’s customer service. You don’t want your customers to like your food when they first visit your restaurant and when they revisit your place they don’t find the same quality, quantity, or taste of the food. This might make them regret the decision to revisit your restaurant, which you don’t want. From cold fries to an overcooked main course, an inconsistent product quickly taints experience and brand perceptions.
4. Take Feedback Seriously
Taking feedback from the customers is a must and should not be treated as a mere formality. On the other hand, treat it as a mode through which you can make all the appropriate changes that will help you to augment your restaurant’s customer service. You must give due respect to all the reviews on social media as well.
5. Use Customer Relationship Management (CRM) To Enhance Restaurant Customer Service
CRM has now become the key that helps in improving customer engagement in your restaurant through loyalty programs and others. Centralized restaurant CRM enables you to gather customer data related to the contact details of the customer, the frequency of visits, their preferences, and average spending per visit.
POS integrated CRM gives great insights into customer demands and behavior and allows you to make informed decisions based on the captured data which will improve your restaurant’s customer service. Waiters can view these details in the POS and upsell and suggest items based on the customer’s ordering history. Once you have your customer data, you can run a loyalty program, and even a customized loyalty program, which will help your customers feel wanted and important.
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