The restaurant business is highly competitive; new restaurants are popping up on every corner whilst other restaurants are closing their doors. The hardest part of owning a restaurant is getting customers through the door in the first place – getting them to return is the easier (and cheaper) task; follow our five easy steps to make sure your customers return.
This one is a no brainer; If you have worked in any sort of customer service environment you will know what it takes to build relationships; the face of your restaurant is your team so they are the key player when it comes to building relationships. Ensuring your employees are providing a high quality customer service includes having product knowledge and the ability to handle minor complaints, meaning that staff training should be at the forefront of your business plan.
Keep it Fresh
There’s nothing worse than eating the same thing over and over again. Whether that means you need to have a daily/weekly specials board or change your menu a few times a year, that is completely up to you. Having specials and menu changes allows you, or should we say your chefs to showcase their talents and creativity. If your menu is quite basic, make sure your specials are a little bit more adventurous; bring people out of their comfort zones! You never know, they might try something new at your restaurant, absolutely love it and then every time the food is mentioned they will remember your restaurant.
Go Above and Beyond
We can all agree that we know someone who we dread going out to dinner with because they are fussy eaters and you don’t want to be a nuisance. This is the exact reason why restaurants need to be flexible; understandably there are some requests which just aren’t feasible (i.e. When someone asks for chicken wings when they’re not even on the menu…), however if someone wants to swap their cabbage for broccoli it’s not going to break the bank. These small gestures show flexibility and understanding, which show that you care about your customers rather than just the money in the till.
Stay in Their Sight
It’s easier than ever before to be seen by your customer. Social media is a great way to market your restaurant; Instagram is a great platform for showcasing what your food looks like, what your restaurant interior looks like and who your team are; Twitter is a great place to promote your offers and to get your menu in circulation – not to mention you’re able to retweet customer reviews and tweets.
As customers, we’re all guiltily of wanting something for nothing! Depending on your restaurant and customer depends on how you reward loyalty. For example; if your customers tend to pop in just for a light lunch and the odd coffee, it could be a ‘loyalty card’ which would be the best way to reward your customers, for every five coffees they buy, they get a free one. Whereas if you own a restaurant which is considered to be a more formal environment, it might not be a reward scheme which you implement; instead you just need to remember your customers and their regular purchases. For example Mr & Mrs Wilson come in every Tuesday and order the same bottle of Pinot Noir to accompany their steaks – when you see they have a table book, make sure they have the bottle of wine on the table ready for their arrival and let them know that this one is on you.
Does Your Restaurant have Adequate Insurance? `
Choosing the right insurance package to suit your restaurant is essential. At The Insurance Octopus, we can help you with options to find the most efficient and cost-effective business insurance policy tailored to your needs. At The Insurance Octopus, we cannot stop any unfortunate events happening, but we can help you find a business insurance policy that provides the right financial protection for your restaurant. Give one of our Insurance Specialist’s a call 0161 968 2041 to get a personalised insurance quote.