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5 ways to increase customer spend in your restaurant

Mar 29, 2017 9:48:07 AM published by James Luck

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Money can’t buy happiness, or so they say. But, in a sense, the reverse is true, as happiness (amongst other emotions) will definitely encourage your customers to spend more money in your restaurant…

1 – Reward and incentivise your loyal customers

According to research, repeat customers spend more. 67% more, in fact. To encourage repeat business, you need your customers to feel special. Because, of course, they are.

  • Introducing some form of loyalty scheme – be it an app, a punch card or a membership card – is a great way to boost customer loyalty and spend.
  • You could also consider encouraging customers back with vouchers they can spend at a future visit – something along the lines of “for every £50 you spend tonight you’ll get £10 off next time” is an effective way to boost current and future sales.

2 – Show off your delicious desserts

Ask your customers whether they want to see the dessert menu and you’ll probably receive a positive response. But, by the time you come back to see whether they’d like to place an order, they’ll often have talked themselves (or each other) out of it.

  • Instead, wheel your tantalisingly delicious desserts out in front of your customers. “Which would you like to try?” is now far more likely to elicit a positive response.
  • You could even experiment with doing this before they’ve ordered anything at all, with the explanation that the chef needs to know to prepare in advance. That way, you’ll hit your customers when they’re hungry!

3 – Incorporate alcohol suggestions on your menu

Whether you’re a bistro pub, an independent café or a higher-end restaurant, you’ll get the best possible margins from alcohol. Boost your alcohol sales and you’ll see the immediate difference in your overall customer spend.

But how to do it effectively? Try one of these methods:

  • Incorporate wine, beer or spirit suggestions next to the individual starter, main and dessert courses on your menu.
  • Educate your team so that they know which drinks to recommend, and how to up-sell on alcohol.
  • Offer your customers a taste or a mini-sized drink to try for free, and they’ll be tempted into ordering a larger size or bottle.

4 – Competitions are your friend

Everyone loves the idea of getting something for free. So regular competitions are a great way to entice customers in and encourage them to spend more.

  • How about picking one evening a week – perhaps a day where business is usually slow – and giving away a meal for free to one lucky customer?
  • Alternatively, you could promote a new meal by asking customers who buy it to suggest a name for it, with the winner getting the item for free next time.

5 – Invest in the right background music

Customers who are having a good time stay for longer and spend more. And a strongly effective way to boost customer enjoyment is with music. In fact, one study concluded that playing music increased sales by 15%.

  • Investing in the right background music technology gives you the power to create the perfect atmosphere in your restaurant or café, tailoring it to the time, season or occasion.
  • With a service like soundjack, you can even empower your customers to select tracks from your menu.

Are you playing the right music? Read our blog to find out.

Topics: Customer spend, Restaurant music, Casual dining

Written by James Luck