As the owner, you love your hungry diners, but you love increasing your restaurant turnover even more. They are your free marketing tool, your network of peers, and the only reason you stay open year by year. But there comes a time where customers overdue their stay.
Where servers are tapping their pens as Sally slowly sips her Spanish sangria. Counting down the minutes they’re past due for clocking out. If only there were a way to politely tell your lovely guests to “get the heck out” so we could go home, or sit more guests.
You can’t financially or physically take on extra staff, you can’t risk your Yelp stars by asking guests leave. So what can restaurant owners do to increase table turnovers without hiring new workers?
Explore these three innovative examples that will have your staff turning tables so fast they won’t know what to do with themselves.
Automate Kitchen Functions
Back of house efficiency is equally as important as front of house when moving guests out the door. An “automated kitchen” is a vast term and doesn’t work for every restaurant, but take to one of the many Japanese restaurants who’ve mastered the art of efficiency in casual settings.
Kura, the Japanese chain, works on minimal staff, sushi-making robots, and a conveyor belt versus traditional servers. During Japan’s economic hardship in 2010, Kura stayed profitable as their competitors failed. Their business model creates a memorable experience for guests with high-quality food and seats new faces faster.
Take a good look at your BOH. Are they efficient? Or are the completely flustered during busy service. While you may not need a super cool sushi robot in your kitchen, an automation tweak could help get food out faster, which leads to increased turnover rates.
Use Subtle Psychological Pushes
There’s more to the tangible food you sell that influences customers behaviour. You don’t need a PhD to understand the effects of a psychological push, or even a degree for that matter. Simply choose a good playlist with some upbeat music to get guests moving along faster.
According to the Association for Consumer Research, a Scottish study showed that indeed, slower music will keep guests in their place longer than upbeat music. Get creative. Tailor a select playlist which complements the atmosphere of your restaurant and entertains guests. All while subtly hinting them to pay and go.
Metronomes out mate. We’re looking for 120 bpm’s and up only. Create manual playlists on apps like Spotify or Apple Music or link up with a custom sound service who can supply the melodies for you.
Implement Mobile Ordering
Turnover rates heavily rely on the efficiency of your Front of House staff. While they’re busy providing the best customer care possible, they’re also responsible for crucial table-turning-time factors: drop checks, clean tables, food from window to table in a timely manner. If you don’t alleviate the small nuances, you’ll never be able to turn tables faster.
Mobile ordering apps like Tayble eliminate the questionable factors related to turning tables. On average, our beta tests showed a 33 per cent increase in turnover times when bills are fixed through the app. And best part, your labour costs stay the same.
There comes a time in every servers career where they want to tell their table to get the heck out. Fortunately for them they don’t have to anymore! By automating monotonous kitchen duties, proving upbeat background music and implementing mobile ordering, you can increase table turnover times and generate profits without hiring a single new staff member.