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Restaurant customers are, of their own will, flocking to convenient technologies such as using online ordering for takeout & delivery.  But, as one hospitality executive observed in The Wall Street Journal last month, “When you lose the experience of ordering with somebody who can give you an intelligent answer, you lose, well, hospitality.”

Although it’s the ideal way to order, personal touch is still important in online ordering.  How can restaurants that grow their business with online ordering keep customers happy by maintaining a personal touch?  Consider some of these tips and tactics:

1.    Select your pickup counter personnel and delivery crew based, in part, how personable they are. A friendly greeting and exchanging quick, pleasant niceties goes a long way with customers and your brand.

2.    Make sure the personnel who handle pickups and deliveries know and use the names of the customers.  As Dale Carnegie said, “Remember that a person’s name is to that person the sweetest and most important sound in any language.”

3.    As an owner, pick up the phone periodically and call a customer who ordered online.  Ask them how their order was, how the delivery driver treated them, and thank them for their business.  Not only will you make a personal contact, but you will receive invaluable feedback and respect.

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