4 Ways to Engage Your Customers Once You Get Them in the Door
It’s no secret that to run a successful brick-and-mortar business, you have to find ways to make them want to return. To gain recurring customers back to your restaurant, you must engage them in a way that leaves a lasting, positive impression. The personal touch is invaluable in this regard, especially in the service industry. You’ll always remember that waiter who smiled at you and made an excellent recommendation.
With that, technology plays more and more of a role in improving the customer experience, even in the brick-and-mortar enterprise. Restaurants are increasingly turning to kiosk POS systems to present menus and collect payments. Even before they get into the restaurant, apps and websites allow patrons to make reservations online. Some popular cafes also let customers pay for drinks and meals right from their phones.
Here are some ways you can combine both digital and traditional experiences to create a memorable impression on your guests.
Make great service second nature to your staff
There’s no getting around it; no matter what advances there are in technology, your customers will have to interact with a real person at some point. Everyone, from the greeter to the chef, needs to know how to handle customers. Don’t take it for granted because it’s written in their resumé that your servers will have the temperament to deal with customers.
Besides training them on how to perform their tasks, deliberately teach your staff customer service techniques. Show them how to engage customers in a cordial way that inspires trust. Encourage them to anticipate the needs of guests and meet them before they ask.
Treat your staff well
If your employees are happy, it will show in the way they carry out their duties. It will also be evident in how they handle customers. One of the key ways to achieve this is to make them feel valued. Show them they are making a unique contribution to your establishment by praising them when they do well.
When they fall short, offer constructive criticism instead of scathing remarks. Decent pay and little bonuses, as well as occasional staff activities away from the workplace, will also go a long way to making staff feel part of a loving family.
Make your customers king
Everything you do should be centered around your customers. One of the ways you can tailor your offerings to the exact taste of your guests is to value their feedback after every visit. Take their reviews seriously and make every effort to make the improvements they suggest—be it adding vegan alternatives to certain kinds of meals or changing the lighting.
Give the king gifts whenever it’s within your ability to do so. You can do this in the form of reward points for frequent visits, or for taking time to give honest feedback. Gifts aside, merely taking time to round the tables and ask guests how they’re enjoying their meal can go a long way to cementing their loyalty.
Order items via kiosk POS
POS systems are not a novelty, but they have certainly grown in leaps and bounds over the years, adapting to changing customer needs. They are no longer just a means of facilitating payment when it comes time to settle bills. Your kiosk POS can run customers through various options on the menu, take their orders, and even allow them to make changes to their orders in real-time. The kitchen staff receives the orders on their display and prepares the meal exactly how the customer planned.
Time is saved as the preparation process begins immediately after guests place their orders. The chances of mixing up orders, and winding up customers in the process, are significantly reduced. Patrons who value efficiency will no doubt be happy to return to a place where they waited a short time to be served—a place where their meal was just how they like it, down to the last bite.
The last bite
Increasing your amount of recurring clientele doesn’t have to entail heavy investments in renovations-although revamping the ambiance is never a bad idea. You can achieve this simply by being more sensitive and responsive to your customers’ needs and preferences. Training or retraining your staff is one way to do this. Setting up a robust kiosk POS is the other. Whichever measures you choose to take, be sure to gauge its effectiveness to ascertain that you’ve made a worthwhile investment.
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