The importance of customer retention for your restaurant

The importance of customer retention for your restaurant

One of the hardest elements of any 'bricks & mortar' business is to get people to walk through your doors and make a purchase. Now, in an ever-competitive field, restaurants that do not put plans in place to get customers through the doors will inevitably fail. Therefore, once you get a customer to sit down and eat, making sure you get them to come back is imperative.

Far too many restaurants figure that their food will do all the talking, and that they do not need to re-market to customers who have already experienced their food, but this could not be further from the truth.

Here, we will explore the importance of making sure first-time customers become long-term relationships in more detail.

Obtaining details for customer retention

In order to have any chance of retaining a customer you need to ensure that you get them to agree that you can contact them in the future. Otherwise, all you are really doing is cold calling, and probably breaking privacy laws at the same time.

To do this explore implementing comment cards or promotions whereby the diner has to give you their email (and tick or cross a box for marketing) to enter their thoughts about your company or a competition. This way, you keep everything legal and at the same time build a platform for existing customer marketing.

Maintain outstanding customer service at all times

It’s not a surprise, but the best way to make sure people want to come back is too offer great customer service (as well as great food). A huge 86% of people will never use a company again if they feel they’ve received average or poor customer service.

With that in mind, make sure your staff members understand the importance of them being well versed and polite at all times.

Why is it important to retain customers?

Many expert marketing companies argue that customer retention offers more benefits than marketing to new customers. There is no denying that in terms of cost, it is much more financially viable to retain an existing one than it is to find somebody else. In fact, a study performed recently showed that it costs seven times the amount to find a new customer than it does to retain one.

What is your restaurant doing to ensure you keep new customers coming in - and keep them coming back? We'd love to hear your thoughts and share them here so please get in touch and tell us more about what has or hasn't worked for your restaurant.

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