One thing our industry has learned over the last couple of years is how much people expect excellent service online.
Any takeaway that isn’t available on a delivery app, or any bar that doesn’t have an online ordering table service facility has been left behind.
For many restaurants, the option to book a table online has long been available – but these days customers want it as standard.
But an online booking facility can do much more than free up the phone line – it can actually contribute to customer retention in several ways.
Younger generations no longer have a monopoly on being tech savvy – any customer can appreciate the ease of booking online.
No waiting on the phone, not having to repeat or spell your name, no anxiety if you’re not a great talker – it’s a preferred option for many.
And if a customer knows they can book with you quickly, easily and stress free, they’re more likely to do it again.
When customers book via our online booking system their details automatically get sent to your database – providing they have opted in of course. Once you secure customer details and the correct permissions, you can stay in contact to keep them informed of new menus or promotions.
Whether you encourage signups to a regular newsletter, or simply send emails with updates, you’ll stay at the forefront of customer minds.
And when it comes time to book for a special occasion or even just a treat night, by staying in touch you’ll increase the chances of it being with you.
Bespoke booking details
If you have a preference for a certain table, or want to arrange something special for a birthday surprise, an online booking system enables this.
Being able to clearly communicate any special dietary or personal requirements and know they’ve been received is a huge advantage.
Providing that peace-of-mind and flexibility for customers is one way to go further and encourage repeat business in future.
Confirmations and reminders
Remove the risk of double booking, or writing a reservation on the wrong date (and the resulting awkwardness when customers arrive).
An email or SMS confirmation of a booking easily eliminates any misunderstandings in advance.
And a reminder before the meal is another nice touch to build anticipation among customers, reduce missed slots and keep people coming back.
Social media integration
With a booking system that enables customers to make a reservation directly via social media, you can reach more people.
And it’s a perfect place to have a presence where content is shared and conversations about experiences happen.
A great night in a restaurant is an easily shared moment on social media, especially if it can include a link to your booking system.
Ready to boost your repeat business?
With the right online booking application, you can enhance efficiency, conserve resources and improve customer retention rates.
If you’re interested in reaping these benefits for your business, please get in touch to request a free demo.