Treat the customer as if they are always right. And on the many instances, they are wrong you don’t ever tell them. If they have complaints or suggestions listen understandingly and always be empathetic. There will be problems and even friction from time to time, how you handle it will determine if your customers go elsewhere or returns to the restaurant.
It is not just the front house that matters. While it is front house and reception that customers tend to see, every restaurant employee should be important to the restaurant. From cooks, waiters, maintenance crew to the manager and service staff they should provide a friendly and welcoming atmosphere for your guests.
If you take reservations, the golden rule is you don’t overbook them. There is nothing more frustrating for customers who have made reservations and walk into the restaurant only to find that they have to wait another half an hour. When restaurant reservations are done correctly you can spread out the seating, else the dining room will fill up too quickly for the kitchen staff to keep up with.
Show appreciation to customers. If you find a customer dining a few times a month don’t be afraid to compensate with beverages or a few desserts. This will show that you appreciate them and they in turn will frequently return to your restaurant.
Ask your customers for feedback so that you know where exactly you stand, and how you can improve on things. Offer a comment card at the end of each meal so that they can provide valuable feedback, both positive and negative. Comment cards will help you make improvements.
A hospitality consultant can help your restaurant business use social media engage with customers on a more personal basis. Social media such as Facebook and Twitter offer businesses a way of interacting closely with customers and getting to know them.