The doors are open, the lights are on, and your staff are inside waiting for customers.
In order to get customers to come through your doors, you invest tens of thousands of dollars in signage, building appearance, and marketing over the life of your business. In they come, eager to shop, browse, or order their favorite item from your menu.
Some come in just to browse and don’t make a purchase, others do buy something or enjoy a meal at your restaurant. But do they all leave with enough information to come back for another visit if they didn’t make a purchase?
Knowing that it costs so much to actually get a customer to enter your facility, it is surprising how little so many businesses do to keep people coming back. And even if you think you are doing a lot to make people come back, check out these ideas to make sure that you are doing all that you can. It’s often the simple things which will yield more business for you.
First and most obvious: will the person get the feel for what you do, what you offer, and the way you offer it? Signage tells the story because many people will not ask for assistance. And if you sell a variety of items, will signage direct them to the proper area of the location? Will a table tent show diners a list of special drinks, desserts or upcoming events?
Special pricing and special offers should always have signage that informs customers of what is available.
You’re smart, or you wouldn’t have been able to get your business off the ground. Now look around and act like a customer. What can I do better or differently?
What should you do better or differently to convey the information you want? Will a customer miss your special sale items because they are not properly highlighted? Signage does not need to be obtrusive to be effective, but it does need to be visible and contain information that creates interest and urgency.
Next and equally important: will the person leave with something to bring them back? This could be a coupon offer for their next visit. It could be a brochure with sales information and/or pricing for your products or services. It could be a take-out menu or a catering menu. It should be something, so consider your business and what you could do to bring people back to buy again, or to give them a reason to buy if they didn’t buy today.
Finally, do you have a referral program? It can be simple and easy to set up, but you should offer your customers something if they bring you a new customer. In its most basic form, the referral card can be a business card sized piece that offers a discount – no matter who uses it. However, there are many viable options for referral programs that are easy to implement.
Bringing a customer through the door is expensive. Maximizing the marketing value of their visit is not.