Common Customer Experience Issues At Restaurants
Dining out can be one of life’s little indulgences. If you work in the restaurant industry, you help deliver that treat to your customers. At Reality Based Group, we know you want it to be as delightful experience as possible. Perfecting the customer experience you provide your customers in the restaurant industry is a bit like putting on a Broadway show – it’s live, fraught with potential mishaps and the audience is ever changing. However, while rehearsal can help a show avoid mishaps you can also make sure your customers give you rave reviews by doing your homework and working towards eliminating the most common customer service issues experienced in the restaurant industry. Get restaurant customer service tips below.
Put Your Best Foot Forward
First impressions are crucial. From the moment a customer enters your door, make them feel welcome with upbeat, professional hosts and hostesses. Keep things friendly, organized and efficient so your customers know they’re in good hands from the get go. Prepare for busy times by keeping your hosts and hostesses well trained to ensure seating is strategic and does not overload servers but sets them up for success.
Efficient Service with a Smile on the Side
Train your servers to interact with customers in a positive manner. We might not all be naturally bubbly but a warm demeanor and a smile can go a long way. Help servers remember this is a luxury for your customers and to treat them the same way they’d like to be treated. Emphasize and support time management so service runs smoothly and quickly. Make sure glasses stay full, orders are taken promptly, food is out as soon as it’s ready and the check arrives in a timely fashion without rushing the table.
Clean, Tidy and Pleasing to the Eye
Nothing is more off-putting prior or during a meal than dirty or messy surroundings. Make sure tables, floors and bathrooms are kept neat and sanitary. Dishes and utensils should be spotless. Take the time to think about décor so your customers want to spend time within your restaurant. Create an environment that reinforces the experience you want your customers to feel. Whether you want your customers to enjoy the feel of a 1950s diner, their grandma’s kitchen or the epitome of elegance make sure your décor reinforces that tone throughout your restaurant.
Mishaps and Mix-ups
We’re only human, no matter how much we plan and prepare mistakes are bound to happen. From a simple order mix-up to a kitchen overwhelmed by an unexpected large party, empower your servers to apologize and keep customers in the loop rather than try to get one past them when something goes awry like a kitchen delay. Chances are they’d rather know there’s a delay than feel forgotten. Further, make sure managers stay handy to let customers know a mishap is not routine and the appropriate action is being taken to fix it quickly.
Go for the Standing Ovation
Do you want your customers to leave satisfied? How about delighted with their experience? Aim for that standing ovation and look for opportunities to exceed your customers’ expectations. Go the extra mile and be willing to make every customer feel like a VIP by being flexible with special requests and providing an experience that impresses every step of the way. Remember, standing ovations are not simply rewarded for a lackluster performance but earned by the spectacular.
To get an accurate measure of your restaurant’s customer experience, consider pursuing a custom restaurant mystery shopping program. Additionally, we also offer help with restaurant customer service training and training videos.