As the demand for holiday catering increases, it’s important to consider ways your customer experience is at its very best. Outstanding customer service drives holiday business and produces lifetime, loyal customers.
What is customer experience?
Customer experience comprises the many touchpoints a customer has with your catering business. At each point of this journey, from the moment a potential customer first encounters your catering company, and inquires about your services, all the way through booking and beyond, their feelings about your business are shaped. This is why at the very core of it, customer experience is vital to the success of your business.
Are you ready to take a closer look at your holiday catering services to make sure your events shine and your customer experience is at its highest quality? Whether you are a small or large catering operation, here are our recommendations to ensure an excellent customer experience this holiday season and beyond.
1. Be transparent
Transparency is crucial when running a successful catering business as it fosters trust and makes the booking process easy. Not only will you be on the “good list” for showing integrity, but you’ll convey that you understand and prioritize your customers’ needs.
During the chaotic holiday season, party planners will appreciate any of your efforts to make things simpler. Make sure you are presenting clear holiday packages, menu items and ingredients, pricing, add-ons, and details about your catering operations. Whether conversing with your customers in person, on social media, or via your website, ensure you and your staff are answering questions transparently. You’ll gain their confidence in your catering company for the holidays and future events.
2. Have a guest-focused holiday menu
Whether for social holiday parties or corporate holiday events, put in place these three important elements in your holiday catering packages to deliver on what today’s customers are looking for:
- Quality ingredients
- Creative menu items
- Flexible options
Start by working with high-quality, fresh ingredients. This has grown in importance as people desire healthy and delicious options to experience. Next, use your originality in creating festive and delicious food and drink, adding twists to traditional favorites. Last, make sure you remain reasonably adaptable with your menu items. Your holiday catering menu and offerings should help make celebrations easier. As a catering professional, you are well experienced in being resourceful to adapt to the dietary needs of your customers and guests.
3. Make your booking process easy
Another way you can improve your holiday catering services, especially during this busy season, is to have an accessible, easy to use, and responsive booking process. This will create less stress for party planners and allow you to get even more bookings.
If you aren’t already, consider TripleseatDirect to allow customers to plan, order, and pay for their event 24/7. Integrate this easy booking platform into your holiday marketing initiatives, including your website and social media. You’ll be sure to improve the customer experience for on-premise events, full-service catering, and pick-up and delivery. You’ll be able to answer inquiries quickly and efficiently. You can easily allow customers to order and pay for catering items and services in a way that is customer friendly.
4. Be generous with upgrades
Another way to ensure you are putting your customers first is to make sure your holiday events offer flexibility with upgrades. Consider concessions when negotiating with event planners so they see significant value in booking holiday events with you. Think of potential enhancements that you can include for on-site, off-site, or pick-up/delivered events.
Here are just some areas of potential upgrades you can consider: holiday decorations, seasonal linen and china, extra waitstaff, dishwashers, on-site chefs, bartenders, festive entertainment, extra use of space, delivery, and more.
5. Increase staff engagement
In order to see a large return this holiday, make sure your business is sufficiently staffed with customer-focused and engaged team members. While it can be challenging to find staff, think out of the box to leverage the workers that are available to have to create a culture that is service-oriented through these strategies:
- Communicate openly and respectfully
- Leverage technology to increase efficiency and communication
- Develop training
- Keep your staff refreshed by scheduling time off
- Acknowledge and reward great employees for exemplifying customer service
6. Seek feedback and solve problems quickly
As a caterer, you want to look for opportunities to improve. It is crucial to know about both the good and the not-so-good aspects that your customer and guests experience. After all, by identifying these areas for improvement, you can then leverage this information to make positive changes.
Solicit feedback leading to and at the event and afterward with a post-event survey. By having these conversations and allowing your customers to provide feedback, your customers will feel exceptionally cared for and have a wonderful impression of your business.
If your holiday event does produce a problem, you want to be proactive and responsive. Display empathy and solve challenges quickly. This will significantly impact your catering business’ reputation.
Use the top tool to manage your holiday catering and events
Are you providing a great customer experience and creating memorable, dazzling holiday events? TripleseatDirect can help by making it simple for your customers to book, plan, and pay for in-house private events, off-site catering, pickup, and delivery with zero friction. If your catering business isn’t using TripleseatDirect yet, book a demo to see how we are helping your competitors.