We have talked about ways to improve customer satisfaction because we know that is key in owning a successful restaurant. Repeat customers tend to spend up to 67% more than new customers, so when you have an increased number in customer retention, you will more than likely increase your profits as well. Loyal customers also like to share their fabulous finds with their friends, which is free advertising for you. Here are 4 reasons customers might not be coming back to your restaurant, and a few tips to consider when you begin implementing changes.
- Poor Training
When you hire a new employee, you should have detailed new hire training in place as soon as they begin. You want them to be trained thoroughly and ensure that all employees are on the same page. If a new policy arises, be sure that veteran staff members are made aware. Communication is always key. Bottom line, when an employee does not understand the ins and outs of the restaurant, it can affect how they respond or attend to customers. If customers have a bad experience, especially more than once, they will likely decide to take their business elsewhere. Restaurants are understaffed, so it is tempting to try and cut corners to get employees to work quickly, but taking the time to properly train them will go a long way in not only customer retention, but with employee retention as well!
- Ambiance is Lacking
Most customers who choose to dine-in instead of ordering takeout are looking for a place that has a special touch to it and feels inviting. The ambiance in your restaurant can be created through many avenues. Having quality service is a key component in creating an atmosphere that coincides with your restaurant’s brand, which goes back to our first point in being sure to provide adequate training. Other elements to consider include the music you choose to play, the volume in which it is played, your restaurant’s color scheme as well as furniture and unique decor.
- No Social Media Presence
We have talked about the importance of having a strong presence on social media and the benefits it can bring to your restaurant. When your presence is lacking on social media, it can have the reverse effect in sending customers away. Social media is a great tool to stay connected to customers and build those relationships that keep them coming back. In today’s market, people are being bombarded with information 24/7, so if they are seeing hundreds of other restaurants online throughout the day, they are more likely to choose what they have repeatedly seen instead of that one place they ate that one time…What was the name?
- Food Isn’t Great
You can be rocking all of the above points, but if you do not consistently serve good food, it will be hard to retain customers. This might seem like it is hard to gauge, but thanks to technology, it doesn’t have to be. You can gain customer feedback through many ways such as social media, QR codes, or your POS System. Take the feedback you receive and make adjustments. It might seem like a lot of work to go back and tweak a recipe or menu, but in the long run, it will serve your restaurant better.
The main point to take away from this is that customer retention can help you increase sales. Getting customer feedback is going to be a key indicator in what areas your restaurant needs to improve. Making a few small changes could drastically improve the success of your restaurant.