While long lines can be seen as a sign of status for some restaurants, it’s never an enjoyable experience for a customer and could end up hurting your business if customers’ time is of the essence. Restaurant wait times have continuously been an obstacle to overcome, and they can be difficult to predict when there are so many variables that come into play. Fortunately, there are a few things that restaurant owners can do to help reduce wait times and provide a more pleasant — and prompt — customer experience.
Without a streamlined system that syncs reservations made online, by phone, and in-person, your hosts may not have the information they need to provide accurate restaurant wait times to your guests. Integrating your reservation system with your table management module, you can easily provide accurate, up-to-date time frames to guests, both online and in-person.
SMS Text Messaging
It’s a common occurrence; the hostess calls out the name for the next available table, yet the party is nowhere to be found. This causes delays and confusion. The hostess doesn’t want to give the table away to another party just yet, but other guests become impatient from long restaurant wait times and a lack of movement in the seating process. . But if another party is seated, the original reservation may be put off when they show up, stating that they couldn’t hear their name being called.
This situation is all too familiar, but could have been avoided had there been a better notification system in place. By notifying customers via SMS text messaging with your point of sale (POS) software, you ensure that they can be seated quickly, and any potential conflicts can be side-stepped.
Restaurant wait times aren’t just important when it comes to seating customers. During busy hours, routine tasks such as providing drink refills or clearing plates can slip a server’s mind. When tasks like these are delayed, the entire dining process is prolonged, preventing tables from being turned and customers from being seated quickly.
Unfortunately, the ripple effects of forgotten tasks can end up hurting your profits and leaving customers with a poor impression. This can be solved by customizing table alarms so servers are notified when customers have been waiting too long, and can attend to them in a timely manner.
Benefits of Shorter Restaurant Wait Times:
Crowded host stands and long lines can put off walk-ins and hurt your bottom line. Having an app that manages reservations and seating charts with ease enables your staff to keep the host stand clear, seat customers quickly, and turn tables faster. More customers throughout the day means higher profits and better success.
Customer and Employee Satisfaction
In addition to managing reservations, POS software can help ensure consistent staff rotations, so that servers aren’t fighting over tables, or blaming the host for high workloads and unfair tipping. Additionally, when a server’s workload is balanced, customers get the attention they need. Restaurant wait times are reduced prior to seating and throughout their dining experience.
Show Respect to Your Customers
No matter how you slice it, reducing your restaurant wait times is critical to business success. It’s important to show your customers that you respect their time as much as you appreciate their business. Faster seating and service doesn’t just help you out, it helps your customer out as well by ensuring their time is valued. Contact a dealer at Heartland POS to learn what POS software is right for you. Need help finding a dealer? (Find a dealer )