How to Get Your Customers to Order Online
If your restaurant offers take-out or delivery options, it’s time to get with the times — customers want to be able to order online. Some do it for the convenience, others (me!) do it because they’re incredibly awkward people and avoid phone conversations with real people in any way possible — sometimes even if it costs a little more. Whether you use software on your own website to take orders or partner with a popular middleman (GrubHub.com is where all the college kids are ordering — trust me), offering online ordering for delivery, take-out, or both can only benefit your business.
Keep these tips in mind if you go online:
Choose the right online ordering partner for your business. Different options come with different costs and levels of customization. Do your research and pick what’s right for you.
Execute the fundamentals. No matter the software or website you partner with to offer online ordering, you’d better be prompt about preparing (and, if you deliver, delivering) your food. Along with efficacy, make sure you get the orders right and are flexible about customizing things for your online customers the way you would if they ate in. Get the orders right!
Market this new ordering option! Make a large, bold note on your menu, post signs, present it on the front page of your website, plaster it all over your Facebook and Twitter pages. If you have an automated phone message, rerecord it to mention this new option for ordering. Make sure people know that you’ve started offering this desirable service! If they don’t know, they can’t order.
Make ordering online worth it for your customer. Consider offering a discount for a customer’s first online order to prompt them to try it out. Offer occasional coupons and specials that are online only.
Here’s the thing about offering online ordering — if your customers can already get take out and/or delivery, there’s no reason not to be online. More people will order, and more often. And don’t think this is only for delivery or fast food restaurants! Any establishment that offers take-out, pick up, or carry-out services should offer them for the internet savvy as well.
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