After spending two years perfecting to-go orders, contactless delivery, and curbside pick-up, restaurants are shifting focus back to the dining room. 

When dining rooms were forced to close during the pandemic, restaurateurs re-discovered the valuable benefits of digital technology and automation, especially from third-party mobile apps. However, the reliance on multiple apps to sustain business and supplement in-person dining experiences came with hefty service fees that offset profits.

Here are three examples:   

1

Waitlist: A reservation system that is integrated with your restaurant’s actual floorplan and table layout helps predict more accurate wait times for guests. You see, the system considers seating times for other tables and knows if table 10 is currently enjoying the main course or waiting for dessert. When waitlists are adjusted, updated, and communicated to guests in real-time, expectations are better managed and more dining room guests can be accommodated. 

2

Staffing: Ninety-seven percent of consumers want to select where they sit for their meal. A leading reservation system like Libro will ask guests if they have a seating preference such as the terrace or chef’s table. This extra level of knowledge gives managers the insight to optimize staff schedules and cover specific needs throughout the restaurant, including the kitchen. 

3

Surveys: Gathering customer feedback helps restauranteurs identify issues, praise employees, and generate online reviews. A leading online reservation system simplifies and accelerates this task by enabling restaurants to capture, keep, and use guest information to send surveys. With Libro, an automated survey can be sent to guests by email or SMS within 24 hours of visiting the restaurant.

Yes, at the height of dining room shutdowns third-party mobile apps were a lifeline to restaurants. And while they will continue to play a role moving forward, restaurants are poised and ready to take more control over dine-in customers using online reservation technology.