The coronavirus pandemic is bringing wide-scale social distancing between businesses and consumers. With dining room closures in place for months, guests have been using off-premise methods to order food from restaurants, often not even stepping foot into stores. As your restaurant reopens and guests return, promoting an emotional connection with them is more important than ever during these difficult times. Your restaurant can bridge the social distancing gap by tailoring each guest’s experience with the help of technology, even without interacting face-to-face with them. Improve brand loyalty and encourage repeat visits by using technology to offer a personalized dining experience.

Benefits of Personalizing the Dining Experience

  1. Know Who Your Guests Are
    If you know who your guests are and what they like, it is easier to figure out what will bring them back for a return visit. Encourage your guests to sign up for your loyalty program. Invite them to fill out their personal information such as birthdays, allergies, and preferences. While staff interactions with guests will decrease as guest concerns over safety grow, technology can still help you get to know your guests.
  2. Enable Guests to Easily Reorder Favorites
    Does a guest like to order their burger medium rare with sliced onions and no lettuce? Get your guests’ customized orders right every time, while minimizing in-person interaction between servers and guests. With a digital ordering system, each guest who opts in will be able to save their past orders to their profile. Guests can easily log into their profile on the ordering device and reorder a customized past order with the tap of a finger. As a result, anyone can enjoy the feeling of being a VIP guest.
  3. Improve and Increase Your Upsells
    Worried about mask usage and social distancing regulations impeding your staff’s ability to recommend menu items to guests? Technology never forgets to upsell. A digital ordering interface can automatically display the best drink and side combinations. When a guest is signed into the ordering device that offers personalization, they can see real-time recommendations based on past orders and current selections.
  4. Send Personalized Offers
    With personalization technology implemented, each guest who opts in will be able to save their past orders and feedback to their profile. Was the guest unsatisfied with a particular dish? With the use of artificial intelligence, you can automatically determine which offers would be most likely to entice them back for another visit.

How to Offer a Personalized Dining Experience

By using order and pay at the table technology, you can automatically capture the information of guests who opt in. When guests enter their email address to receive a digital receipt, include a checkbox that gives them the chance to opt into your loyalty program with a single tap. You can offer guests rewards as an incentive for joining your loyalty program, such as a discount or free appetizer for their next visit.

Here are some more ideas on how to utilize personalization, both during the dine-in experience and afterwards. The good news is that all of these can be automated with technology!

  • Exclude dishes from a menu based on a guest’s allergies.
  • Recommend dishes and upsell items based on a guest’s preferences.
  • Thank guests for their repeated patronage by name.
  • Is a guest’s birthday coming up? Send them a birthday note, along with a complimentary drink offer for their next visit.
  • Is it the anniversary of a guest’s first visit to your restaurant? Send a warm note thanking them for their repeated patronage.
  • Did a guest leave a poor review on a certain dish? Send a letter of apology and offer a discount on an item that they would enjoy instead for their next visit.

While social distancing regulations have increased and guests remain wary of human interaction, guests will still enjoy the feeling of being known and recognized by businesses they visit. The key is to provide them that hospitable experience while minimizing human contact. Our Contactless Dining Kit is especially designed to help you achieve this. Using their phones, guests can view the menu, place orders, and pay at the table—without the need for any human contact. Guests can also sign in, see rewards, view past orders, store dietary preferences, and reorder favorites for a highly tailored experience. Learn more at