Maintaining Customer Experience in the Takeout App Era

December 6, 2016 Jackie Prange

 

Your customers demand convenience, and by way of takeout apps, they’ve been given just that.

 

But what does this level of convenience mean for your business? It means customers are coming and going faster than ever before – spending less time in your restaurant, and less time interacting with your business.

 

The reality of this increased convenience is that your window of opportunity to nail down that seamless customer experience has shrunk significantly, so how do you keep these in-n-out customers coming back for more?

 

Here are a few tips and tricks to help maintain your customer experience in the takeout app era.

 

Line Skip

Don’t make your takeout patrons wait in line alongside all of your regular paying customers. Their orders are ready and waiting, and all they want to do is get it and go, so show them you value their time by designating an area where they can grab their food quickly and painlessly. It won’t go unnoticed.

 

 

Red Carpet Treatment

Add to the that front of the line experience mentioned above and roll out a red carpet – literally! This seemingly cheesy addition will only add to your customer experience, by giving your patrons a visual cue as to where to go grab their food, while also making them feel extra special when they’re there.

 
 

Loyalty Cards

If you’re looking for customer loyalty, this tip is a no-brainer. As many restaurant owners assume, loyalty cards don’t need to a be a big initiative, something as simple as a punch card can do wonders. This hassle-free gimmick will likely influence where your customers choose to visit next meal time, and if there’s a free meal in in for them, chances are it’ll be your place.
 

 

Freebies 

While there’s no such thing as a free lunch, there is such thing as a freebie. Throwing a little freebie in each takeout bag is a gesture no customer would deny. Again, freebies don’t need to be a huge strain on your bottom line. Instead, fork out some excess inventory; those mini donuts that didn’t sell as well as planned, or a few seasonal juices you’re trying to get rid of – these types of gifts will be a hit with your customers, while helping you move some unwanted inventory. Win win!

 
 

Get Personal

Who doesn’t like a little special, personalized, attention? Show your customers you care by slipping a hand written note in their take out bag, thanking them for choosing your restaurant. For those regulars coming to grab their grub from your restaurant, make a point of remembering their names so you can give a personalized greeting. A little goes a long way.  

 
 

Bonus!

Lean on your smart POS system’s data to deliver an unparalleled customer experience. For example, at checkout, take one of your repeat customers by surprise and ask them how they enjoyed their BLT last week, or yesterday’s soy latte. This kind of attention to detail will leave your customers speechless and feeling special.

 
 

So there you have it – the in-and-out culture that’s accompanied the rise of takeout apps doesn’t have to be a bad thing. By implementing a few of the tips above into your restaurant's day to day, your customer experience can remain top notch, even if less than five minutes.

 
 

For more help with winning at the customer loyalty game, check out

How to Turn a First Time Patron into a Loyal Customer

 
 
 

About the Author

Jackie Prange

Jackie is a Content Marketing Specialist and Social Media strategist at TouchBistro. She covers the latest food, dining, and technology trends for the restaurant industry. A lover of all things coffee, Jackie’s hobbies include breakfast, lunch and dinner.

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