When choosing a restaurant to dine at, the type of cuisine and the quality of the food obviously plays a huge role in the decision-making process. However, what’s important for restaurant owners and staff to understand is that it goes deeper than just the food, it’s also about the customer dining experience. If a customer enjoys a great experience each and every time at a specific restaurant, this automatically elevates their impression of the restaurant. Not only that, but they are much more likely to tell friends and family about what a “great experience” they had at that particular restaurant.
As a server, that customer dining experience relies quite heavily on you and your actions. Servers can literally make or break the experience. So how can you as a server improve the customer dining experience and transform them into a loyal repeat customer? Here are some tips you can use.
Use a Friendly Demeanor
There is nothing more off-putting for a customer than having a server who doesn’t exude a friendly and welcoming attitude. Using a friendly attitude with customers helps them to relax, feel at ease, and gives them the ability to enjoy the food. This friendly demeanor includes smiling, making small talk with customers such as asking how they are doing today, asking if they have any questions, if this is their first time in the restaurant, etc.
Always Start Them Off with Drinks Right Away
It’s also important that the minute your guests are seated, either by you or another staff member, that you take their drink orders right away. This speaks to the speed of service in the restaurant and makes a great impression.
Check on Customers that Perfect Amount of Time
With this tip there is a bit of a learning process involved, plus you need to be able to read your customers somewhat. Learning what the perfect amount of times is to check on a customer is another key in providing that amazing customer dining experience. Checking on them too little or too many times will take points off the experience, so finding that happy medium is essential.
When you do check on them, make sure you ask if everything is okay, are they missing anything, do they need a drink refill, etc.
Ensure the Table is Neat and Welcoming for the Next Guest
If it is part of your job to also clear the table when customers leave and set it up for the next guests, then you want to be sure you make it neat and welcoming. This is actually something the owner should be involved in as far as the initial set up. Things such as having the proper sized and height restaurant table tops, the ideal dishes and cutlery, table top covering, and even the seats all should be given thought. Have the boss/owner show you an example of what they expect the table to look like as well.
Each of these tips is designed to help you be the very best server possible thereby giving customers the best dining experience.