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Improving your restaurant’s look and feel

Improve your restaurant’s look and feel

Delicious food and good service are essential factors of a customer’s experience in a restaurant. But customers also care about ambience – so improving your restaurant’s look and feel can do wonders for your business.  

The reality is, customers perceive good ambience as added value. This is especially true if your restaurant’s primary customers are heavy social media users.

And it’s not just about how the place looks. A good ambience is appealing to all senses: touch, smell, sound and taste (this last sense is mainly satisfied through the food and drinks you will serve).

With that in mind, here are five factors to consider when improving your restaurant’s ambience. 

1. Lighting

Unique lighting in a restaurant.

There are three categories of lighting to consider for your restaurant: Accent lighting, task lighting and ambient lighting. 

Ambient lighting sets the background lighting for your establishment. It’s the main mood-setter. This lighting also has to be sufficient for your staff to move around comfortably. 

Task lighting provides lighting for customers as they read the menu and eat, and for the staff as they prepare drinks behind the counter, and so on. 

Accent lighting is for highlighting special elements of the decor of your restaurant such as pieces of art up on the wall, or special plants in the corners. 

Depending on your restaurant, you will opt for a different combination of this lighting. For example, if you own a fine-dining establishment, soft and warm ambient lighting will help calm your customers, and keep them at your restaurant longer. 

But if you own a fast-food restaurant, and you want clients coming and going, (not necessarily staying and taking up space), then more task lighting will do the trick.

Check out this article on restaurant lighting – you’ll get a great idea of trends and design for lighting. It’s just one of many stops you can make to improve the look and feel of your restaurant.

2. Background Music

Music performance at a restaurant.

The music your customers hear can enhance their dining experience more than you think. Studies have shown how much music can impact us psychologically. And restaurateurs can take advantage of this by playing music that fits with their concept, in order to boost sales. 

Let’s take slow tempo music for example. Research has shown that customers listening to such music are more patient and calm, meaning they’re more at ease even while waiting to be served. High tempo music, on the other hand, makes customers eat and drink their food quicker. 

So are you trying to create a sense of calm for your customers, and are you counting on their patience? If that’s the case, slow-tempo music will do the trick. 

But if you’re aiming for a high table turnover, meaning you want to serve as many customers as you can in a certain period of time, then high-tempo music will serve you better. Research actually suggests that customers will follow the rhythm of the music as they eat. 

If you’re operating a fine dining establishment, you might consider playing classical tunes. If your primary customers are young and vibrant, then the choice of music would have to match that instead. (Don’t play old classical tunes to teens who blast K-Pop in their headphones).

There are other reasons restaurants should consider playing music while their customers are dining. Music makes customers feel comfortable speaking to each other. Nobody wants to chat in a silent room knowing everyone can hear them. Not to mention the sound of cutlery can also be quite irritating. 

So keep your customers’ ears busy listening to music that enhances their dining experience. This is one great way of improving the feel of your restaurant.

3. Uniforms for the staff

Staff at a restaurant wearing the same uniform.

When your staff wear the same uniform, they look like a team, which leaves a positive impression on your customers. Studies have also shown that uniforms increase the performance of your staff and increase their chemistry. 

As if that’s not enough, Uniforms make it easy for customers to identify waiters. We’ve all accidentally ordered an extra plate of fries from another customer, who probably wasn’t pleased you mistook them for the waiting staff. Uniforms save your diners from making such an embarrassing mistake.

Also, uniforms emphasise the brand of your restaurant. Seriously, if your staff are walking home with their uniform, people will see the logo, which means increased visibility.

And remember, the uniforms have to match with the concept. So if you own a sports bar, the uniform could be a custom made jersey. If you own a simple cafe, a simple t-shirt would do. 

So don’t underestimate how essential staff uniforms make a big difference in improving the look and feel of your restaurant.

Conclusion

Enhancing your customers’ experience increases customer retention, which is vital to the success of your business.

On top of that, if your customers really have a good time, they will talk about your restaurant with their friends and family. Even better, if the look and feel of your restaurant is such that people can’t help but take pictures, that’s more marketing for your establishment. 

Creating the right environment for your customers to enjoy their food can make all the difference.

Packaging – the unsung hero

The look and feel of your restaurant doesn’t begin and end at your restaurant. Sometimes, your customers will opt for delivery or takeaway. Your selection of packaging materials have the potential of leaving an impression, similar to the lighting or music at your establishment. 

It’s all about showing that you care to give your customers a great experience. Nobody wants to receive soggy food, when they were expecting something crispy. And packaging can go a long way in preventing such a nightmare!

So while you’re thinking of all the ways you can spice up your restaurant to create an awesome experience for your customers, drop us a message too, so we can talk about the packaging solutions that will make your customers love you more than they already do.

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