Penelope is a popular New York City restaurant located in the bustling neighborhood of Murray Hill. This privately owned, single-unit location has customers waiting over 60 minutes for a table numerous times per week, which posed a serious problem: Penelope was losing guests during their lengthy wait times. The restaurant was searching for a solution that was easy to install and something that the staff could pick up quickly. In addition, Penelope wanted to improve the overall guest experience during the wait time.

 

The Challenge

• Over 25% of guests added to wait list ended up “walking away” due to 60+ minute waits.
• Received an average of 12 guests complaints per week regarding long wait times.
• Staff was reluctant to change their previous wait list system.
• Limited data on customers made it difficult to identify repeat customer.

 

The Objective

• Increase revenue by decreasing walk-aways and canceled tables.
• Increase guest experience and overall satisfaction during wait time.
• Achieve instant staff buy-in with minimal integration, training and upkeep.
• Collect customer data and easily display to staff for improved practices.

 

The Solution

WAITLIST MANAGEMENT

Guest Manager provided Penelope with their WaitList platform, consisting of 3 parts: 1) an iPad-based Wait List Management application that allows hosts to greet and notify their guests with SMS-messaging and collect/store guest information; guests are then prompted to download 2) Guest Manager’s Consumer Mobile App (free for iPhone & Android) which gives customers the ability to check their wait list progress, browse top trending dishes with photos, unlock rewards, and provide private feedback; and 3) E-mail reports (sent daily and/or weekly) which send all collected data directly to the restaurant.

CUSTOM ACCOUNT SETTINGS

Penelope’s account was created in roughly 15 minutes, which included custom text messages to match their brand, custom status colors on the WaitList interface, unique loyalty rewards, high-res photos of their top dishes, and custom feedback fields within the Guest Manager Consumer Mobile App.

5-MINUTE TRAINING

Penelope’s hosts were fully trained on the system in less than 5 minutes. This gave them confidence to use the system in a live environment immediately following training.

 

The Results

28% DECREASE IN WALK-AWAYS

Guest Managr’s Waitlist platform lowered Penelope’s “walk-aways” and canceled tables from 25.6% to 18.4% (28% decrease), resulting in 1,101 additional seated guests. At an average guest check of $25 per person, Penelope realized over $27,500 in incremental revenue during the 60 day period.

66% DECREASE IN WAIT TIME COMPLAINTS

Before Guest Manager, Penelope was receiving an average of 12 guest complaints per week in regards to “waiting for a table.” After implementing Guest Manager, Penelope received an average of 4 guest complaints per week, decreasing guest complaints by 66%.

100% APPROVAL RATING FROM STAFF

All 6 hosts were surveyed and each host agreed that Guest Manager was a “big improvement.” Training was deemed “very easy” and the system was called “intuitive.” One host commented that Guest Manager’s Waitlist, “allowed me to spend more time greeting and seating guests… it honestly made our host stand run smoother than ever before.”

 

Additional Value Provided

3,800+ UNIQUE CUSTOMER PROFILES CREATED

Guest Manager enabled FOH staff to identify repeat guests and VIPs. Of the 3,800+ guests, more than 700 enrolled into Penelope’s mobile loyalty program directly through the Guest Manager consumer app. This opt-in process delivered email, birthday, and other information to be easily accessed from the Guest Manager app.

110+ FACEBOOK ENGAGEMENTS = 4,100+ NEWS FEED IMPRESSIONS

Guest Manager’s Facebook integration allows guests to update their status within Guest Manager. When friends click on the link provided in the post, they are taken to a custom splash page that displays Penelope’s venue information and photos of their top dishes.

90% OF GUESTS AGREE GUEST MANAGER IS A “BIG IMPROVEMENT”

50 random guests were surveyed and asked if Penelope’s new wait list system was “no improvement, a small improvement, or a big improvement.” 45 out of the 50 people surveyed said that Guest Manager was a “big improvement.”

GUEST APP RETAINS 45% MORE GUESTS

Guests who downloaded Guest Manager’s Mobile Consumer App are 45% more likely to be seated (not walk-away or cancel) than other guests. From wait list progress to top trending dishes, Guest Manager creates additional excitement around the Penelope dining experience.

Related Links:

Guest Manager for Restaurants
Waitlist Management App
How to Keep Hosts and Customers Happy With Guest Management Software

 


 

Based in Silicon Valley, CAKE is a Sysco company offering restaurant-specific technology solutions. CAKE’s platform seamlessly integrates front and back of house restaurant operations, allowing restaurant owners and operators to achieve unparalleled visibility into and control over their point of sale, table and waitlist management, menu pricing, guest preference tracking, reservations systems, inventory and payroll.