Building a customer loyalty program is a fantastic way to keep your customers returning to your restaurant, ultimately boosting overall sales. However, for it to work, you need to recognize the importance of choosing restaurant loyalty program software and designing it in a way that best benefits your customers and your business.

To help you out, read on to learn how to create a customer-centric restaurant loyalty program.

1. Choose the right rewards platform.

One of the most significant decisions you need to make is how you are going to present your loyalty program. In other words, what system will you use? Some of the most common options include a membership loyalty credit card, a punch card, automatic rewards systems and databases, receipts, or an app.

A punch card is a simple way for your customers to keep a record of their purchases; however, many people don’t want to carry these around regularly. Alternatively, an automatic rewards system and database keeps track of customer’s purchases for them, making it a lot easier for your patrons.

Your best option is to look for a restaurant point of sale (POS) software that offers loyalty programs capabilities. This will enable your patrons to simply enter their email or phone number to receive automatic points when paying with their card. Then, after obtaining a certain amount of points, they will qualify for discounts or rewards. This is how you keep your restaurant loyalty program simple yet effective.

2. Offer attainable rewards.

Offering rewards to customers is a fantastic way to motivate them to choose your business regularly. In addition to daily food and happy hour specials, you also want to be offering perks and rewards that are targeted to your customers. For example, your rewards program may allow guests to get 50% off every 10th visit, or perhaps they will receive points for every purchase which can then be used towards future purchases.

Whatever you choose, you want to make sure your incentives are attainable – it shouldn’t be too difficult for customers to receive these rewards! Otherwise, guests won’t be motivated to return as they won’t think that they will ever reach reward-level status.

3. Surprise loyal customers on their birthday.

Moreover, the best POS system for restaurants enables customers to enter their birthday into your database so that you can give them a special gift for their birthday. Additionally, you can use the information collected to offer holiday-themed specials, coupons, and other discount campaigns via personalized emails.

This type of customization is essential for building a customer-centric restaurant loyalty program. It requires minimal to no work for your customers, yet allows you to monitor their favorite orders and the frequency of their business, and then reward them for their patronage.

4. Ask for feedback.

To create a customer-centric restaurant loyalty program, you need to ensure that you are engaging with your customers as much as possible regarding the program. One way to do this is by having short surveys integrated into your POS system or through email that helps you to learn what your customers are enjoying (and not enjoying) about your restaurant and your loyalty program.

Once you have compiled this information, you will then be able to integrate your guests’ feedback into your loyalty program, proving to them that you listen and care about their opinions.

5. Build brand loyalty.

The customers most likely to join your restaurant loyalty program are those who regularly frequent your establishment; therefore, to build your loyalty program, you need to focus on brand loyalty. In addition to serving high-quality food and drinks, the most important strategy for creating loyal customers is to ensure that you and your staff are always engaging with them in a professional and personable way. It is this type of service that will help ensure that guests return – and bring new customers with them!

Train your staff to ask customers about their day and to learn the names and orders of the “regulars.” This small step will make a significant difference when it comes to gaining loyal patrons. You want them to feel that your restaurant pays special attention to your loyal customers.

Similarly, your loyalty program should also be in tune with your restaurant’s branding. In other words, to be effective, the concept and rewards should clearly fit the vibe of your establishment. In some cases, this may mean having T-shirts, coasters, or other marketing products as potential customer rewards. Then, you are combining brand-building, marketing, and customer appreciation in one go.

About Foodics

If you are interested in taking your restaurant’s loyalty program to the next level, reach out to Foodics today. Foodics offers a cloud-based all-in-one restaurant management system on iPad in English and Arabic. With multiple add-on iOS apps and building on more, thousands of restaurants, food trucks, cafes, and fast-food chains across the Middle East are hiking their revenues and building their relationships with diners.