Running a restaurant is a tough job, but it is also a very rewarding one when you have customers coming back time and time again because they love the dining experience. While there are always going to be big things to take care of in this type of business, it is the little things that you really need to think about. Here are 10 rules for running a restaurant and keeping customers happy and satisfied.
1. Seat People Immediately
If a party has arrived but not all members are there yet, seat those who have arrived. They will be more comfortable at a table than in the lobby or waiting area and you can serve drinks and appetizers and increase your profits.
2. Feed the Children
When families are dining, it is important to make sure that the kids are fed as soon as possible. If there is going to be a wait for the meal, make sure that the customers receive bread or other appetizers. Kids tend to get pretty cranky when hungry, and cranky kids can spoil the dining experience for all of your patrons.
3. Customers Come First
If it weren’t for your customers, you wouldn’t have a restaurant. They are your bread and butter, so make sure that you are giving them something they really want. The better the service and food, the more likely they are going to continue patronizing your restaurant. There are a few apps that will make running your restaurant even easier and your customers happier. Some of our favorites include:
- Make employee scheduling fast and simple with ZIP Schedules.
- Notify parties when tables are ready with WaitList.
- Manage reservations and tables with SeatMe.
- Track all of your online reviews in one place with Reviews Tracker.
4. Wait to Clear Tables
People get annoyed if you clear their table too quickly. Ask your wait staff to wait until the customers are ready to pay for their meal. Just because they may have put down their fork and knife for a few seconds, it doesn’t mean they are finished with their meal.
5. Don’t Cheap Out
From food to equipment, it is important that you get the absolute best that you can afford. This is going to instill a sense of trust in your customers because they will know that they will always get the best food and service possible.
6. Be Consistent
Consistency can be difficult, because if you have an ounce of creativity, you are going to want to make changes to things like décor, menus, etc. Remember, most people tend to like things that are familiar, and your customers may not be happy with a lot of changes.
7. Be Attentive
Customers like to receive attention, but they don’t want to receive too much attention. Be sure to find a balance so you give them what they need without going overboard and being annoying.
8. Mention Sauces and Condiments
It is a good idea to serve many items, such as burgers, plain. Not everyone likes mayo or ketchup. Mention sauces and condiments that are available and be sure to note on your menus any dishes that are made with special sauces.
9. Bring the Check Quickly
Once people have finished their meals, they usually want to be on their way and don’t want to wait around forever for their check. Be sure that your waitstaff bring the check promptly so customers can pay their bills and leave, freeing up tables for the next customers.
10. Make the Bill Legible
It is important that customers are able to read their bills easily. That way, no mistakes will be made — on their end and on your end. Use a printer rather than writing bills by hand if possible.
Featured photo credit: MICHAEL BROWNING via unsplash.com