Too many restaurants have been ignoring the intellectual property of their business. There are a number of businesses that use restaurants to provide a service, such as Dimmi and Book A Restaurant. What some restaurants don’t understand is that they are sharing their customer’s details with these companies and these companies are commoditising the restaurant experience. Pick a cuisine and pick a suburb and they will make the booking or take the order. It entirely removes the quality of the food, the customer server, and the atmosphere from the purchasing decision and as such makes it incredibly difficult to built up repeat customers. We have already written about the dangers from using Dimmi as a booking engine, apart from the unwarranted charges to take the booking.
A growing number of restaurants are also understanding that allowing companies to purchase a domain name and sell either restaurant bookings or take away orders puts them at significant risk. These companies could easily ‘rent’ a website for say $200 a month, because they own the domain name.
This is the kind of offer that your customers will receive when you use the Dimmi booking engine. This is one of the biggest reasons for the decline in customer loyalty. When times are tough you MUST have the highest level of customer loyalty possible.
One Indian Restaurant we have been consulting with has multiple websites provided by booking and online ordering companies. It is difficult to find their actual website. With a generic name, the traffic to these sub-sites could be easily redirected to another Indian Restaurant in the same suburb and the business would literally close in a couple of weeks. Restaurants are becoming a lot more aware about unscrupulous companies trying to muscle in on their brand and on their customer lists.
Thankfully there are now a range of alternatives. Marketing4Restaurants offers a booking engine that feeds customer details into their marketing database. This is given to customers who have a website free of charge, making it very simple and cost effective to take back control of your restaurant customer database.