Why Restaurant Operations Are So Important
Restaurant operations are vital to running a profitable and growing business.
Operational procedures include things like purchasing, staffing, food preparation, and business benchmarking.
With proper and efficient restaurant operations, it is quite possible to drive down costs while improving customer loyalty and spend.
Today’s restaurant industry is ultra-competitive, so finding any way possible to decrease costs and increase guest loyalty should always be top-of-mind for operations teams.
However, the only way to be as efficient as possible when it comes to your restaurant operations is to have stable, reliable customer data with which you can make intelligent, data-driven decisions.
Thanks to the rise of WiFi technology, you can now have access to the type of data you need to make these types of decisions.
Most WiFi technology just focuses on WiFi marketing tools for restaurant marketing. However, WiFi analytics provide a set of key performance indicators (KPIs) that show your organization how to improve restaurant operations by measuring your customers’ behavior at your locations.
WiFi analytics is very much like Google analytics but for your physical location.
How WiFi Analytics Can Help Improve Restaurant Operations
WiFi analytics give restaurant owners and operators the ability to gather valuable data centered around the activity and behavior of their actual customers.
So, this makes forecasting traffic and scheduling staff easier.
It also gives you data to identify trouble areas quickly.
WiFi analytics showcases data, such as dwell time by the hour or how long someone stays at your location when they come in at a specific time, like 10 a.m.
For instance, if your average dwell time or table turn time is 30 minutes, but at 10 am it’s 60 minutes, you might have a staffing issue you need to address.
Every WiFi-enabled device, such as a cell phone, tablet, or laptop, is continuously sending out a signal that is searching for a WiFi access point.
This signal contains a unique identifying number, exclusive to each device.
At the same time, your restaurant’s WiFi access point is always “listening” for any device that comes into range.
When a WiFi access point finds a device, it is logged into a database, identified by its unique identifying number.
Even if your guests do not log into your WiFi, you can collect anonymous behavior data on every guest carrying a device.
With this kind of data, you can immediately begin forecasting and scheduling with much more accuracy.
If your guests do attempt to log into your WiFi, they will be required to enter their email address to gain access to the internet.
Now, this creates a customer profile. Any previous and future data will be added to the customer profile, allowing you to make smarter restaurant marketing decisions, as well.
What Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) Can You Access?
This data will be from an enormous sample size of your actual customers.
You’ll see valuable KPIs that you can easily apply to your operations decisions, such as:
- Customer Dwell Times, and Dwell Times by Hour
- Daily Customers vs. Passers-by
- First-time Visitors
- First-time Visitor Return Rate
- Popular Visit Times
- Projected Lifetime Visits
- Customer Churn Rates
- Customer Repeat Rates, and more
You’ll see these KPIs updated in real-time. It is the most accurate and reliable market research you can obtain.
Likewise, it comes at a fraction of the cost of other data collection methods.
If you operate multiple locations, you can use the data to compare traffic and dwell times of different places.
You can also use the data to help make more efficient staffing, purchasing, and preparation decisions.
Successful restaurants understand that it is imperative to have the inventory on-hand to fill customer orders. Back-of-house purchasing can be a tricky thing.
You want to make sure you have enough food items in inventory to complete all of your orders without 86’ing menu items, even the rarely ordered items.
At the same time, you need to make sure that you do not over-purchase, resulting in the spoiling of food items and an unnecessary loss of money.
Managing inventory is also essential for drink items, paper items, and crucial miscellaneous items.
Having a good understanding of how many customers are visiting, at what time, and how they’re behaving at your establishment, it becomes much easier to make the kind of accurate purchasing decisions necessary to maintain a lean and profitable business.
Much like purchasing, food preparation is an integral part of running a smooth and successful restaurant.
Food items, such as vegetables or sauces, need to be prepared in advance of busy times.
Some restaurants will also prepare individual menu items for customers with allergies, or those who might have special requests.
You can cook and present menu items much quicker than doing everything when the order comes in.
With accurate and reliable customer data acquired from a WiFi analytics platform, it becomes much easier to prepare the right number of items before the busy shift begins.
Analytics helps to ensure that you are not under-preparing, leading to chaos when you create preparations on the fly. Likewise, it keeps you from over-preparing, which can lead to spoilage and waste.
Restaurant operations are at the center of your everyday focus. You can have the best food and environment in the world, but if you’re understaffed, your customers will most likely have a negative experience.
Customers expect to be greeted at the door, seated quickly, have orders taken in a reasonable amount of time, politely and respectfully.
When you are understaffed, your servers will undoubtedly be bustling and reasonably flustered.
This experience does not bode well with what customers expect out of a successful restaurant. But at the same time, over-staffing can cause tremendous and unnecessary costs.
Having accurate historical data that can be filtered and sorted by date and time can help tremendously. Staffers will have a much easier time ensuring that the proper amount of staff is on-hand.
They will also be able to relieve servers from duty at the most convenient times.
When you analyze your restaurant’s measurements against the industry benchmarks, you can begin to see the areas in which your restaurant could use improvement, as well as where you are succeeding. You can then apply more focus and resources on things requiring improvement.
Likewise, you can work to cement the best performing areas and make them even better.
Your team can then brainstorm ways in which to close the performance gaps.
Then, you can make corrections and take measurements consistently to verify a move in the correct direction. You would then take steps to continue to monitor and iterate on your success strategy over time.
Traditional benchmarks are still used and esteemed by most restaurants today. However, new parameters are now in use.
These include things like third-party delivery benchmarks and customer behavior benchmarks.
The latter can only be accessible using a WiFi analytics platform like Bloom Intelligence.
Read more here: Restaurant Operations Benchmarks.
Bloom Intelligence Restaurant Operations and Growth Tools
You can learn more about the ways the Bloom Intelligence WiFi marketing and analytics growth tools can help you improve your restaurant operations. If you want to drive more sales, improve overall customer experience, measure customer sentiment, and grow your business, schedule a free demo today.
Decreasing Customer Churn
WiFi Customer Intelligence
WiFi Analytics Pricing
WiFi Analytics to Grow Your Business
The True Value of WiFi Analytics
Bloom Intelligence goes above and beyond.
“They have always been attentive through whatever needs and questions we have.
They go above and beyond to make sure our team and customers stay connected while helping us with our marketing efforts.”
~ Matt Thompson, Managing Partner
Great, Personalized Customer Service.
“Our company uses Bloom Intelligence as a WiFi log-in service and we really like what they do. They offer great personalized customer service. The analytics are extremely useful and the aesthetic in the marketing scheme homepage is great once the guest logs into WiFi with some options to market specifics for the business or post beautiful photography. Highly recommend.”
Are You Improve Your Restaurant Operations with WiFi Marketing?
If so, Find out how Bloom Intelligence’s WiFi analytics & marketing platform measures offline customer behavior and builds customer loyalty.
It’s time to start leveraging your guest WiFi to gain a competitive edge. Then watch your profits grow.