Taking your restaurant reservations online is the first thing you should consider when you open a restaurant, or when you’re doing a clean-up or reset of your restaurant operations. When you make the switch from offline to online, its effects start multiplying across management, marketing and operations. Not only will you be cleaning up diner records and data, your front-of-house staff will thank you for making their lives much easier when it comes to consolidating bookings from multiple sources. Online restaurant reservations are the way to go, and here’s a look at four ways this gift keeps on giving.
1. Clean records on the cloud
If your restaurant is still relying on pen and paper and accumulating years worth of reservation books, you should immediately consider the value of taking reservations to the cloud. Lines of diners and their phone numbers in these books amount to nothing in terms of valuable data. They also take up a great amount of space in storage, and may even fade or get lost over time.
Reservation records stored online can be organised, searched and most importantly, analysed over time. Getting diners to fill up reservation requests online also ensure that entries are more accurate compared to what is noted over the phone. By keeping a diner database online, records can be stored securely and made accessible by team members from any device as long as they have an internet connection.
2. Improve diner CRM
When you start taking online reservations, you also start to build a diner database — a list of diners that have ever dined at your restaurant. On top of contact information and visit history, restaurant staff can also input information about diners in the form of tags or notes. Integrations with point-of-sale (POS) providers and membership systems further enrich diner data. Our proprietary software also allows you to segment your diner database for more targeted marketing efforts.
3. Take bookings 24/7
We’ve observed that 21.76% of online reservations are made between 10pm to 10am. If your restaurant does not take reservations online, you may be missing out on reservations being made after hours! Even though restaurant phone lines are generally available during their operating hours, front-of-house staff might be too busy to take in calls.
4. Consolidate all bookings
Today, diners can reserve restaurants through multiple channels such as phone line, email, restaurant website, Facebook Messenger, Instagram private messages and options for third-party booking partners. The right online reservations partner like Chope can help automate the process of consolidating these, leaving you time to do more meaningful tasks.