Customer Experience

4 Surefire Ways to Anger Your Customers

By Andrea Victory

Dissatisfied customer complaining to restaurant employees about a dish

No one really likes to get angry. The average guest is dining out to have a good time, eat some great food, and enjoy a drink or two. But true to Murphy’s Law, when things go wrong, they tend to go really wrong, really quickly. Especially in the restaurant industry; in such a fast moving environment, being on top of your tables up to the minute is tough.

The good news is a modern POS can help you stay on top of everything and save your skin more times than you’ll be able to count.

If the following scenarios play out at your restaurant, it’s time to consider a POS that will help you avoid pissing off your valued guests.

1. Screw Up Their Order

There’s nothing that can get under a guest’s skin like a plate that’s set down in front of them only to realize it’s wrong. After all the time they spent deciding on your restaurant, getting there, waiting for a table, carefully choosing a menu item, and then waiting for it to be made, for it to finally arrive and to be sent back…man! Can’t you almost feel the flames coming out of the customer’s ears?

Never do it again! Tableside ordering with an iPad POS means mods aren’t missed or the wrong thing punched in, because the order isn’t being stored in the server’s memory on top of a host of other to-dos. It goes from the customer’s mouth into the POS. The server can read back the order and the customer can watch as it’s sent to the kitchen. Easy as – the correct slice – of pie.

2. Lie to Them

There are little fibs that don’t seem to cause much of a bother, and there are outright ignorant lies that can ruin someone’s day: A bartender tells a group of business people that the restaurant accepts AMEX, and then racks them up a tab, bills them out, and tries to run it – only to awkwardly confess that their corporate card isn’t actually accepted. Or, a server assumes the caesar salad dressing is dairy-free and serves it to a highly allergic guest who spends the rest of the day trying to recover. Or even adding auto gratuity without warning your customers first. From payment options to price to ingredients, being told one thing and then finding out another is infuriating!

Avoid it! A modern POS has all the information that guests ask for, literally in the hands of servers and managers. What credit cards are accepted? Check the payment options. Is there gluten in the burgers? Check the menu item’s ingredients listed in the POS. With all the answers in-hand, there are no more evil surprises lurking, and no more servers leaving a table stranded to go “check with the kitchen”.

3. Sell them Something That’s Been 86’d

The specials have been rattled off and that salmon starter sounds perfect, so everyone at the table orders one. Ten minutes later, the group is informed that in fact, it’s been sold out. But wait – did this happen before they ordered or is this place so disorganized, they sold their orders twice!?

Prevent this! Coming back from this kind of disappointment so early in the dining experience can be hard. So make sure it never happens. A POS with built-in inventory tracking can countdown limited items so nothing gets ordered that isn’t available. Your staff and your kitchen – and your guests – will love you for it.

4. Hold Them Hostage

We’ve all heard it, heck, we’ve all said it: “Why is the server all over you when there’s food in your mouth, but when you want to go, they’re nowhere to be found?” Of course the server is busy, running around dropping off drinks, and waiting for the stationary POS to be free so they can punch in an order, but regardless, when the guests want to go, they want to go – now! There’s nothing that can turn a positive dining experience sour like having your card out and ready, only to be ignored, told “just a minute” (it’s always 10), or made to wait for a machine to become available.

Let them leave! An iPad POS has features that make picking up the check fast and easy: Mobile payment processors can go tableside, and sign on screen means no more searching for a working pen. Alternatively, setting up weekly tabs or monthly accounts in your POS offers regulars the flexibility to leave when they are finished, and ensures that they’ll be back more often.

Things go wrong when a guest doesn’t feel heard, their expectations aren’t being met, information isn’t relayed correctly, or their time is undervalued. Set your restaurant up for success and ensure your guests leave satisfied and happy with an iPad POS.

Stop angering your customers today!

Photo of Andrea Victory
by Andrea Victory

Andrea was a Content Marketing Specialist and Editor at TouchBistro where she wrote about restaurant and dining trends, restaurant management, and food culture. A self-affirmed food geek, Andrea devours cookbooks and food blogs. She also knows how to make a killer kale salad.

Free Restaurant Cleaning Checklist

Get hot restaurant tips. Delivered.

Orange Takeout Box