Whether you’re just opening your doors or have been in the neighborhood for 30 years, your bar or restaurant could benefit from a guest journey map. This tool will help you optimize the flow of your restaurant, reach and acquire new customers and keep people coming back for more.
So, what is a customer journey map?
A guest journey map is a visual representation of how a customer or potential customer interacts with your venue. It includes all the touchpoints they experience with your staff, your marketing and even your physical building. You’ll put yourself in your guests’ shoes and think through how they’re feeling each time they interact with an advertisement, the waiter, your menu and even how they feel after leaving.
The benefits of a customer journey map
One of the biggest benefits of creating a journey map is to figure out where you’re losing customers and why. Perhaps people are walking by your restaurant, but they aren’t coming in because they can’t see the menu outside. Or maybe guests are turned off when the host is having trouble nailing down a wait time. Perhaps the infrequent check-ins from the waiter leaves people feeling like your business doesn’t care about its customers. At each stage in the customer journey, you’ll identify customer frustrations along with opportunities for improvement.
Which brings us to benefit number two. A journey map can be a great way to identify new ways to market to and engage customers. If you find that customers aren’t coming in because you’re not showing up in their searches online, invest in digital marketing or a strong social media presence. Or if customers leave happy, but don’t write a review, add an insert to your bill presenter with a QR code that leads to your Yelp page.
Finally, the exercise of creating a customer journey helps you better get to know your customers. You’ll need to think about who they are, what they value and why they might be interested in your venue. You’ll identify their wants and pain points, along with how you can help them with each.
Mapping out the customer journey
The first stage of the customer journey should be the decision-making process. Before a customer enters your venue, they need to decide where to eat or drink. What are they looking for in a night out? How and where are they looking for ideas? Is your venue showing up there? Once they’ve decided on your venue, the next few stages take place in and around your space.
Think about how they interact with the exterior of your venue. (Is it easy to find parking? Do you have clear outdoor signage? Can they find the entrance?) Then note interactions with the host and waitstaff. Is it easy to order food and pay the bill? And don’t forget the final stage, which is leaving your venue and getting them to come back, leave a review and recommend your venue to a friend.
Need help creating your customer journey map? The customer experience experts at Accel want to help. Contact your Accel Relationship Manager or send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.