Restaurants and Bars

5 Ways to Improve Your Restaurant Customer Service with a POS System

by

May 14, 2019

Customer service upgrades can take are often hassles that take time and money, but one of the more unexpected and simpler ways you can boost customer service quality is with the right point-of-sale system.

While you might initially implement one in order to decrease your payment processing time, a point-of-sale system can actually do wonders for all facets of your restaurant, especially customer service.

There are several reliable methods for leveraging your point-of-sale system in order to upgrade your business methods and improve the customer experience. You can, for instance:

  1. Refine your business’ workflow.
  2. Streamline your ordering process.
  3. Upgrade your payment processing.
  4. Track customer and management metrics.
  5. Initiate rewards programs.

So let’s get started on finding out how using a point-of-sale system can change your customer service for the better.

refine workflow

Refine Your Business’s Workflow

Whether you’re using a restaurant POS, a retail POS, or a more general POS system, installing point-of-sale technology will carry certain benefits along with it.

A modern point-of-sale system can target multiple areas of your workflow and improve them almost immediately. Anything from your shift-scheduling to your floor layout can be handled with ease.

When you’re using a POS system to improve your workflow, you can easily:

  • Enable more precise communication for your employees.
    No matter what kind of business you run, a point-of-sale system can let your staff communicate more efficiently and effectively. Issues like shift scheduling or recovering past orders are drastically simplified, so your employees can focus more of their energy on providing positive customer service.
  • Decrease the number of service errors.
    Better employee communication means fewer clerical errors and service mistakes that can frustrate customers and managers alike. Now, with a clearly traceable workflow, you can more fully understand where mistakes are being made. This clarity can help you correct them in the future and train your staff so they don’t happen again.
  • Customize the POS system to your business.
    Great point-of-sale systems can accommodate whatever physical layout your business might have. In fact, some of them even provide features specific to different sectors of the service industry, like restaurants, coffee shops, and bars. Customizable menus and floor layouts then can help you manage customers much more easily.

A variety of paid and free options for point-of-sale technology exists. Either way you’ll be able to improve areas of your business through the POS.

streamline processing

Streamline Your Online Ordering Process

These days, customer service takes place in both the digital and in-store areas of your business.

Many point-of-sale systems not only improve the in-person experience for your customers but can also turn your online ordering numbers around.

If you need to upgrade your business’ online ordering process, remember that it can be important to:

  • Integrate with other software.
    Modern point-of-sale systems can often integrate with other software platforms for the utmost convenience. This means that you can use your point-of-sale systems to handle online orders in conjunction with software that either expand your online capabilities or make it quicker and simpler to handle.
  • Prevent shopping cart abandonment.
    Abandonment occurs when online customers browse your website but, at the last minute, decide to end their potential transaction. According to Swoop’s shopping cart abandonment guide, this can occur for a number of reasons, many of them relating to poor user experience. Point-of-sale systems, especially when it comes to the ordering process, allow the customer maximum comfort and convenience during the purchase, so you don’t have to worry about losing them to a difficult website.
  • Smooth out delivery orders.
    If your business delivers goods, then there’s a high chance that you run into a number of obstacles on a daily basis that can prevent you from carrying out your orders effectively. Anything from driver communication to order processing can cause issues. Luckily, a point-of-sale system can help organize and manage your delivery orders so that you can focus on managing your drivers more effectively.

Online ordering doesn’t need to frustrate your customer. With a POS system, you show that your business is careful and considerate about the online ordering process and improve employee and customer interactions in the future.

upgrade payment processing

Upgrade Your Payment Processing

While a number of methods exist out there for processing credit and debit cards, you’ll find that a POS system can do a fantastic job of keeping your customers’ payments secure and fast.

One of the biggest benefits of using a point-of-sale system is the improvement it makes to your business’ payment processing. This feature alone has the potential to make your service faster and increase your customer satisfaction.

There are a few simple things you can do for your payment processing with a POS system that will make all the difference later on. For example, you can:

  • Accept multiple forms of payment.
    Whether it’s credit card or cash, a point-of-sale system can take it all. Don’t leave your customers dissatisfied during the very last part of their experience. Allow them to make a smooth and uninterrupted purchase.
  • Add options for tips.
    If you’re running a service-based business like a restaurant, tipping is an important part of the customer-employee interaction. With the right point-of-sale system you can offer preset tip amounts ahead of time, making the customer more likely to tip, and even making some customers likely to tip even higher than they would have otherwise.
  • Use online alternatives to credit card processing.
    When it comes to online payment processing, credit cards and even PayPal aren’t the only ways to go. A point-of-sale system enables you to access every possible payment option. Not to mention that it’s a great way to impress your customers no matter what business you’re running.

While payment processing is a huge draw for potential POS buyer, don’t overlook other payment-based features a point-of-sale system offers. These ideas give just a small picture of how a point-of-sale system can improve your payment processing in other ways that ultimately improve the customer experience.

track customers

Track Customer and Management Metrics

When it comes to customer service, data is an invaluable tool for employees and managers alike.

A point-of-sale system can collect customer and business information in real time, allowing you to analyze your service practices as they happen.

When you start using a point-of-sale in this way, you can take advantage of several key features:

  • Understand customer preferences and history.
    Nothing shows customers you care like remembering their favorite drink or recalling their past orders. A point-of-sale system makes this process easier on your business. If you’re using Lavu’s bar POS, for example, you can keep track of what drinks your return customers have ordered in the past.
  • Record inventory changes in real time.
    High-quality point-of-sale systems can provide real-time inventory tracking, updating your managers and employees on how much product your business can supply. This comes especially handy when it comes to customer service, as now you can be sure you know whether or not you have that particular item in stock. If you don’t, you can inform the customer promptly and keep yourself from misleading them.
  • Analyze customer data with visual representations.
    Using a good point-of-sale system means that you can track customer trends and behaviors over time. This allows you not only to improve elements of your business like marketing and management, but it also lets you provide quality customer care as you see what service practices make the biggest difference to your customer base.

Tracking customer and management metrics is a vital part of any business, but with the right point-of-sale system, your techniques and methods for doing so become that much more straightforward.

rewards programs

Initiate Rewards Programs

Customer satisfaction is the first priority in customer service, making rewards programs an excellent bet for improving both.

Plenty of POS systems offer options to use gift cards and loyalty programs, making your customers happy and giving your business a better reputation for customer loyalty.

Using rewards programs with a POS system isn’t difficult, and you can even break it into pieces. You can:

  • Make use of gift cards.
    A number of great POS systems have gift card functionality that allows customers to use gift cards whenever they like. As gift cards are a popular attraction for customers, having this option will improve your relationship with your customers. It may even bring about more return customers than usual.
  • Try out customer loyalty programs.
    Going beyond the gift cards, a customer loyalty program will increase your customers’ satisfaction by showing that you care about your passionate customers. Providing special discounts or VIP service to those in the loyalty program demonstrates your care for repeat business. Best of all, a modern mobile POS system can manage loyalty programs, giving the customer a headache-free experience all around.

Rewards programs are often overlooked but very effective solutions to improving your customer service. Try these suggestions if you’re ever in need of a way to implement rewards through your point-of-sale system that will make a difference in your service practices.

Continually improving customer service should be a main priority for any business. But plenty of managers don’t know where to start.

With these ideas in mind, using a POS system is an excellent solution to any customer services woes you might. So don’t sleep on them. Get started improving the customer experience at your business with your POS system today!

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Saleem Khatri

BY Saleem Khatri

Saleem Khatri is the Chief Executive Officer of Lavu. Saleem has a "founders mentality", with a track record of working with high-growth software companies. He is a rare breed of someone who is both a hands-on leader and a strategic visionary and brings with him a myriad of inspiration, technical acumen, and a passion for our products, services, and customers. Prior to Lavu, Saleem successfully launched software and hardware products at start-ups via Y Combinator and managed a $79 billion investment portfolio on behalf of the United States Department of the Treasury. Saleem earned his MBA from the Harvard Business School and his undergraduate degree from the University of Michigan -- Ann Arbor.

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