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Back in June, we featured an article on Fado Irish Pub and the announcement of that Irish pubs use of OpenTable, an online service to help patrons make reservations.
This week Irish Pubs Global looks further into OpenTable and how the service is effectively used to track and improve the overall customer experience, as well as help your Irish pub increase its revenue.
The ability to know and read your customer is crucial to the survival of your Irish pub. When a customer orders food at your Irish pub, it is vital to note their habits and preferences; everything down to any quirks they may have.
OpenTable allows you to log in details and track information about an individual customer; whether it is a specific preference, like having a stake cooked medium rare, or noting that they have an allergy to fish.
It is also becoming common practice to document whether or not an individual is a new customer or even a friend of the manager. This tracking of information can be limitless, even down to knowing whether a customer prefers their butter hard or soft. The main objective for your Irish pub is to pamper the customer in order to increase your revenue.
“We call it the ‘Cheers’ effect” says Ann Shephed, vice president for marketing at OpenTable, in reference to the Boston bar in the 1980s sitcom, which created the ideal atmosphere of local establishment where “…everyone knows your name.”
As any pub owner worth their salt will tell you, there is nothing particularly new about this system, however, OpenTable has refined what would otherwise be an arduous task. Once a customer makes a reservation via OpenTable, your Irish Pub will be sent a listing with the basic details, such as the customers email address, any specific requests or details on whether or not the customer has used the service before.
OpenTable’s software then allows your Irish pub to add information, which is called up when a customer arrives. This data can then be printed on a slip that is shared between your Irish pubs staff, as detailed by the manager.
All of this is useful information, however, Clark Wolf, of the restaurant consulting firm Clark Wolf Company, believes that the knowledge of this information should remain invisible; “If you say, ‘I know you like a white Burgundy from the 1970s,’ that is creepy,” he said. “Instead, you ask them what they like and point them in the direction of that white Burgundy.”
Taking all the above into account, the benefits of OpenTable should be clear to everyone, making it an essential part of any Irish pub and restaurant.
Source: Conor Flynn, Irish Pubs Global