When trying to improve restaurant profitability, many operators focus on two areas. First, spending funds on marketing and advertising to get more customers in the door. Second, attempting to increase return visits through loyalty programs or offers. Both strategies are typically high in cost.
Many operators ignore the fact that the most important factor in improving profitability is the guest experience. No amount of smart marketing or discounts for return customers is going to fix a bad guest experience.
Why is guest experience so important? Studies show it is the most important factor in building customer loyalty, which results in repeat business. If customers have a positive experience, you shouldn’t have to bribe them with discounts or loyalty points to get them to return. They return because they want to, and they tend to spend more because they enjoy being in your establishment. Additionally, customers who are loyal because of a positive experience are customers who actively use their own influence to spread the word about your business. They tell their friends and family, and they leave positive online reviews which leads to more like-minded customers in the door.
92% of customers trust word of mouth recommendations more than any other form of advertising!
Marketing and cost cutting are important but improving your guest experience is the most sustainable path to restaurant success. Trying to improve profitability? Focus your entire team on delivering an exceptional guest experience every day.