SYNQ3 Restaurant Solutions' AI study Reveals 3 Ways Restaurants Can Enhance the Guest Experience

5/1/2017
SYNQ3 Restaurant Solutions  announced the results from a never-before-done study using a new artificial-intelligence (AI), automated-speech-recognition (ASR) technology, VIA Analytics.  Like the study[1] itself, the findings show that restaurants using dedicated order-takers and guest-specific data experience a 6.4 percent increase in sales and an 11.4 percent increase in positive customer experiences.
 
In the study, VIA (Virtual Intelligent Assistant) monitored restaurant calls for three major brands, including P.F. Chang's, as well as SYNQ3’s restaurant-technology, call center. Using advanced AI, the tool tracked tone of voice, vocal stress, language, interactions, timeliness of responses, interruptions, vocal exchanges, and emotions during each call. It then correlated those findings with customer experience, engagement, handle time, call abandonment, average check, and order-to-call ratios.
 
When detailing why P.F. Chang’s participated in the study, the president and COO Wayne Jones said: “Creating the optimal dining experience for guests is our No. 1 goal. With this study we were able to actually track, measure and assess live, in-process guest interactions to find specific strategies for enhancing the guests’ experience.”
 
Several takeaways surfaced in the study providing insights for all restaurants to improve their customers’ experience, and thus, increase restaurant sales. The listed takeaways include:
 
1.      Restaurants need to provide more consistent positive engagement. To provide the optimal guest experience during take-out orders, restaurants have to identify and implement means for increasing consistency and efficiency in how they engage with their guests. By centralizing the order-taking process, restaurants can provide more focused, effective and enjoyable guest interactions.  
 
2.      Guest-specific data can greatly increase the guests’ experience and overall guest-to-restaurant relationship. According to the study, using dedicated order-takers and guest-specific data equated to a more positive customer experience by 11.4 percent. When a guest calls for a take-out order, and SYNQ3’s guest-data system recalls their name, preferences, favorite order, food allergens, and other specifics, the order-taker can provide an efficient, guest-centered interaction. And, according to the study, guests like ordering with someone who knows what they want and how they want it.
 
3.      Outsourcing, restaurant technology, and guest-specific data lead to greater profit margins in take-out orders. In the study, restaurants experienced significantly better order-to-call ratios, a 6.4 percent increase in sales, when using dedicated order-takers and guest data. With the data, the call center was able to greet callers by name; offer options based on noted preferences; direct the conversation based on tone and prior ordering history; upsell; and, ultimately, close more sales with an increased average check.
 
“Increasing restaurant profits depends on providing a great guest experience,” Jones said.  Both he and SYNQ3 agree that restaurant technology holds countless opportunities for restaurants to revolutionize the guest experience to benefit both the guests and the restaurant. 
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