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How to choose an online booking system for your restaurant

Having an online table booking system is increasingly important to many restaurants. Here is how to choose the one that's right for you.

More and more restaurants are realizing the importance of having an online reservation system. So much of life is online now that having to pick up a phone or send an email to book a table at a restaurant just feels outdated—and many won’t even bother to do it. Guests go to the web or social media and want to see if a table is available and book it. Quick and easy! So having an online table reservation system will obviously lead to more bookings, as a result, increased sales.

With a variety of options available, how do you decide which one is right for you? Here are some things to consider when choosing an online booking system.

Compare costs

Some of the booking systems on the market cost more than they might be worth to you. And the best choice is not always the one with the most name recognition. Check out several options and make sure to pay attention to what you get and what it costs.

What is best for the guest?

Where do your guests live their online lives? If you have a large presence on social media, with many followers, your restaurant might be better served with a booking system where your guests can book a table directly on Facebook. Anything you can do to meet your guests where they are will make it a better experience—and increase the chances they use it..

Who gets the actual data?

An important question to ask when evaluating different booking systems is who gets to see the data that is collected when guests book a table with you? You want to ensure that you get the names and email addresses supplied by guests and not the booking system’s supplier. This allows you to use the addresses to send special offers or invitations to VIP evenings, etc.

What are your needs?

Most importantly, you should choose a booking system that suits your restaurant! Here are a few thing to think about while evaluating your options:

  • Do you want the booking to go directly into your POS?
  • Should the booking system only be active during your working hours or 24/7?
  • Do you want to be able to send out confirmations?
  • Should the guest pay a small amount when they book to minimize the risk that they do not show up?

Do you want to learn more? Download our guide on choosing the right booking system!

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