value

What value looks like to today’s restaurant guests

Inflation and food prices remain high on the list of concerns for consumers, and focusing on value is one way that restaurants can get guests’ attention and capture more business. While LTOs, special offers, and reduced pricing are strategies to increase value, there are ways to engage guests and offer more, without compromising your margins.

Service

Value doesn’t necessarily have to be cheaper pricing; perceived value can include a superior experience. For example, if the ordering process is complicated at one restaurant and simpler at another, and the pricing is the same, customers are more likely to frequent the one that offers the better experience. Offering guests a seamless system for ordering, picking up, or dining in is one way that restaurants can stand out from the crowd to up the guest experience.

In the case of pick-up and delivery, studies show that 24 per cent of restaurants fail to confirm an order and provide a pick-up time, and 70 per cent do not notify customers when their orders are ready. Leaving customers frustrated will affect your bottom line, so focus on offering value by providing better service and a positive experience.

Personalization

The same might be said for personalization. In a crowded and busy world, restaurants that recognize and appreciate their customers can build loyalty and increase repeat visits. If you have a loyalty program, use that data to get to know your guests so you can celebrate customer milestones, send targeted promotions, and provide service that’s tailored to each guest. Technology is evolving to help here too, with chatbots asking specific questions, geofencing to add to your customer base, and digital menus that can be tailored to your guests’ needs.

Studies show that 52 per cent of consumers expect all offers to be personalized, so focus on defining your target customer and offering them specific services to show that they are seen and valued will have them coming back for more.

Engagement

In today’s fast-paced world, communication and engagement can get lost. The probability of selling again to an existing customer is 60 to 70 per cent, so fostering those relationships is vital for your business. Engage with your customers online and on social media to build a rapport and create an atmosphere that encourages your guests to want to come back. 80 per cent of a business’s revenue will come from 20 per cent of its customers, so focus on engaging and building relationships with your best clientele.

Part of this process means asking for feedback from your guests. Send e-blasts, distribute comment cards, and ask your customers what they want to see more of at your restaurant. This shows customers that you care about their opinions, gets you to communicate with them, and allows you to offer the value they’re looking for.

Even though inflation is affecting customers and businesses alike, offering more value at your restaurant can be accomplished without slashing prices and compromising your bottom line.