If you own a restaurant and you offer take-out, using a call center will improve restaurant customer service and, as a result, sales.
Take-out is all about convenience. It’s a simple enough process: The customer calls in, places an order and either picks it up or has it delivered. But the fact is restaurants have about a 20 percent call abandonment rate. That means that one out of every five customers calling to buy food, get tired of being on hold and hangs up.
You can turn abandoned calls for take-out into sales using a call center.
Reasons You Could Use a Call Center
Here are some scenarios when it would be valuable to have an answering service take your restaurant’s calls:
- You’re in the middle of your busiest time and you get multiple calls from people wanting to know what the specials are. You have someone to answer the phone, but they are missing some of those calls and haven’t got the time to do anything else around the restaurant.
- People are calling to make reservations and you have to pull someone away from their regular duties to take those reservations.
- If you offer curbside pick-up and delivery options, you need a good method of taking orders and getting that information to the kitchen staff and delivery drivers.
- You want to expand by adding another location and need more time to speak to investors and contractors, as well time to hire and train more staff. Answering phone calls all day cuts into that time.
How it Works
A restaurant order taking call center specializes in the synchronization of people, process and technology. Customers are routed to a friendly ordering specialist, who has been trained on the restaurant’s menu, language, process and culture. Customers won’t even realize they’re not talking to someone at the restaurant.
Call center order taking is a simple process whereby food orders are taken remotely and sent to the restaurant through the Internet. Not only does this offer more convenience to customers, but it’s quicker and brings in more customers for the restaurant. Besides taking food orders, a call center can handle all of your calls, manage online orders and allows customers to schedule a food order using a restaurant’s mobile app.
Some restaurants use a call center for food ordering even when they don’t have a delivery service. These restaurants use it to manage pick-up orders or to take reservations. The system manages all phases of the process at a central location. Order taking through a call center works the same as orders entered by your staff for production, tracking, delivery and business reporting. It can also handle customer inquiries and complaints and allows for a more efficient operation.
This lets the restaurant work more productively while also improving its image among customers.
The benefits of using a call center for take-out orders are many, including:
- Reduces stress on restaurant wait staff and kitchen crew, so they can focus on providing great in-house customer service
- Benefit from more sales and lower labor costs
- Order and pick-up time can be reduced by half
- Food ordering services can be monitored
- Quality customer service
- Seamless expansion of your workforce without disrupting restaurant’s level of customer service
- Saves time and money
When a call center takes over handling your phones, they answer the phone using the same phrase you would use, so customers aren’t even aware that they aren’t actually talking to someone at the restaurant. Agents can answer questions about your hours of operation, what’s on the menu and basic information about any catering services you may offer. Besides taking orders, a call center agent can make reservations and dispatch delivery drivers.
All of the necessary information from your calls can be sent to you by email, SMS text, a patched call, a dispatched call or any combination of these. If your restaurant has a website where people can place orders online, a call center can handle that, as well.
All of this can be done for less than the cost it takes to hire, train and pay hourly employees and frees up your time to do what you need to do to make your restaurant prosper.
Call center agents are highly-trained order taking specialists using top-of-the-line technology. You can rely on them at any time for efficient food ordering services. These agents are attentive to the customer’s wants and needs and then up-sell from the menu. You could potentially see a double-digit increase in the average take-out order.
A food order taking call center can have a dramatic impact on your restaurant business. You can improve efficiency, enhance customer relations, and increase your profits using a call center for take-out orders, dispatching delivery drivers, taking reservations and so much more.