Guest satisfaction is the be-all and end-all when it comes to business. Whether you are in the hospitality sector, retail, or any other form of business, customer satisfaction matters. Happy customers mean customer loyalty. And customer loyalty means a strong company with an excellent profit turnover.
You can measure guests’ satisfaction in many ways, for example, usually through online reviews. It’s important to know that all feedback is valuable. You’ll get value whether customers have a bad experience and leave negative reviews or positive reviews. Satisfied customers come from a long-term habit of connecting with your guests on a consistently deep level.
Are you ready to connect more deeply and effectively with your customer base? There is no time like the present, especially regarding customer satisfaction. This guide will show you how to tackle guests’ satisfaction head-on. We’ll cover everything from why you should care and how to measure customer satisfaction. There’s lots to cover.
By the end of this guide, you’ll be ready to rocket your levels of customer satisfaction. Get ready for a business success makeover.
Why You Should Care About Guest Satisfaction
Before we dive into the nitty gritty details of boosting guest satisfaction, why should you even care? It is a valid question. And if you’re going to keep your motivation high, it’s a good idea to clarify why it matters. This way, you’ll have solid reasons to keep striving for high customer satisfaction levels. So, why should you care?
It is primarily because your business reputation and volume of customers depend on happy customers. Unfortunately, unhappy customers talk - leaving negative reviews or spreading the word vocally amongst family and friends. If you don’t care about customer satisfaction, there’s a higher likelihood of getting unhappy customers. It could be catastrophic for both your profit and reputation. After all, customer loyalty is what keeps the business world spinning.
There are some other reasons, too, though. Let’s take a quick look at the top reasons you should care about your guest experience:
- Reviews increase brand visibility.
Did you know that Google reviews help you rank for SEO? Those - preferably positive - online reviews are slowly building your brand visibility. It is ideal for those wanting to boost your profit, creating more traction online to market your business.
- It reinforces your business values.
Increasing customer satisfaction helps to reinforce your business values, which is vital for success. If you promote yourself as a friendly family business, your guests should leave after feeling welcome and comfortable. Your guest experience should align with your values. Consistency is key.
- You should take pride in your business.
The moment you stop caring about the guest experience is the moment that your standards slip. It is your business. And your customer satisfaction should be a point of pride. After all, it measures your business’ quality - and who wants a low-quality business?
How To Improve Guest Satisfaction
It is all good talking about customer satisfaction, but how do you improve it? This section will be entirely practical, teaching you how to improve guest satisfaction in your business. What better way to equip you for tackling your business improvement? Grab a paper and pen - or at least your Notes app - this section contains advice, tips, and tricks.
1. Pay Attention to Insights and Trends
Insights and trends are ridiculously helpful. Guest insights are valuable details about your target demographic, while trends are details on what customers want. If you measure a balance of the two, you can adjust your customer experience proactively to meet unvoiced expectations. Are you a mind reader or what? There’s nothing better than feeling understood, and paying attention to insights and trends is how to make guests feel this.
You can use trend-researching tools online. Alternatively, you can also send out questionnaires and collect insights manually. It is up to you.
2. Ask for Feedback and Act on It
A hugely important way to improve your customer experience is to ask for feedback and act on it. It could be as simple as training staff to ask about customer experiences at the point of sale or customer departure. It could also be more organized, like offering QR code posters with free drinks in exchange for feedback form completion. If this is your style, check out standard feedback templates online. Also, encourage guests to leave online reviews.
Of course, this also includes replying to negative reviews and actively responding. So, asking for reviews is not all passive and then private analysis. You must be comfortable publicly answering and inputting real change to counteract negative experiences.
3. Analyze Customer Loyalty
It would help if you used customer loyalty analytics. Analyzing customer loyalty is vital for improving customer satisfaction. By exploring customer loyalty, you can get an honest insight into whether or not your guest experience is up to scratch. If you have an outstanding customer experience, you’ll get repeat customers - it’s as simple as that. Use tracking tools and guest profiles to do this, and research different analytical software.
Compare your loyalty stats to others in your industry as a benchmark, and plan to encourage a loyalty increase. You can also use loyalty stats to measure the effectiveness of other changes you make to boost customer satisfaction.
4. Fix Any Obvious Satisfaction Leaks
Lastly, it helps to be proactive when fixing any ‘satisfaction leaks’. For instance, you should fix anything like not offering WiFi, having haggard-looking furnishings, and thin walls in noisy locations.
If you notice it, you can bet your bottom dollar that your guests will, too. It is vital that you are proactive and constantly evaluate your business through an objective lens. There’s no point investing time and money into collecting feedback with obvious satisfaction leaks. The most obvious things are first to get fed back, and less apparent things sit on the back burner.
What Is Important for Guests at Restaurants?
If we look in particular at restaurants, what do guests look for? What creates customer satisfaction at restaurants? There are a few factors to consider, mostly to do with food quality, service, and ambiance. Consider restaurant values, like how to set up an eco-friendly restaurant. In general, these are the top things to consider:
Food quality is a major one. Your food should be tasty, and your menu should be diverse enough for different dietary requirements.
Service is major. Everything from attentiveness to timeliness and friendliness is vital for wait staff to nail.
Guests should be comfortable. For instance, if you offer outdoor seating, you should also provide heaters or at least blankets as a thoughtful touch. Similarly, furniture should be clean and comfortable.
Ambiance is critical - after all, dining out is an experience. You should invest in a sleek theme for your restaurant and make sure it looks aesthetic.
Your restaurant should be excellent value for money. It means everything from your dish prices to ambiance and the cost of the ‘experience’ should be worth the price.
Your values and ethics should align with your brand image and appeal to your target customer demographic. It could be anything from veganism to family-friendly dining or organic, local produce.
What Is Important for Guests at Hotels?
What about what guests rank hotels for? How do guests subconsciously and consciously categorize hotels into different categories, and what actually decides their level of satisfaction? Staying at a hotel is a deeply personal experience - demanding a great deal of comfort to create happy customers. Let’s look at the different factors that impact how hotel guests feel about their stay.
Comfort is a huge deal when it comes to hotel stays. Luckily, there are tons of ways to make your hotel comfortable. It would help if you always kept mattresses, furniture, and sheets up to high standards.
Value for money is an easy one and something to keep in mind. Your rates should always reflect the quality of the customer experience you offer. Do your market research and get clear on prices.
The decor is essential, as aesthetics are all part of the customer experience. If you want happy customers, keep your decor inspiring and aligned with your brand image and pricing.
Services are another essential factor. You should definitely offer reliable WiFi. You should consider facilities like a gym, swimming pool, communal lounge or concierge services.
Location is a huge factor when guests are experiencing a hotel. How many times have you had a great hotel in a horrible location? For instance, if your hotel is outside a busy road or in a sketchy area of town. Location needs to be a consideration when buying a property ideally.
However, it may also mean you must offer additional adjustments, like double glazing and soundproof walls. Or you could offer complimentary airport shuttles and lots of entrance lighting.
How Do You Know If Guests Are Satisfied?
With all this information in mind, how do you know if your guests are satisfied? Well, you can judge that by collecting feedback and then analyzing your feedback results. You can also judge it through things like customer loyalty. Have a quick scan of these things to look out for. They should give you insight into customer satisfaction:
Rebookings and repeat customers are a brilliant sign. It shows customer loyalty and suggests your guest experience is impressive enough to return.
Reviews can be good, bad, or neutral. However, they are always significant indicators of guests’ satisfaction levels.
Verbal feedback is excellent to check out as customers leave your business. For instance, when settling the bill at a restaurant or checking out at a hotel. You can prompt guests to volunteer their level of satisfaction with questions like ‘How was everything for you today?’. You can then typically tell by their mannerisms and body language, even if they don’t give exact verbal feedback.
To follow that up, you should also track body language during the customer experience. This is vital as it lets you act in the moment to tackle a bad experience mid-flow. If you track body language, there is always time to fix customer satisfaction.
Final Thoughts: How Long Does It Take To Improve Overall Satisfaction?
You can improve customer satisfaction immediately - which is impressive. By paying attention to body language and being present during your business hours, you can avert most bad experiences. It is the best and quickest way to improve overall satisfaction.
Of course, you’ll naturally need long-term strategies, like tracking customer loyalty analytics. You can offer feedback forms inviting ratings for specific elements of the guest experience - like location, service, and decor.
This strategy might take a few months to build clear patterns amongst the feedback and input any necessary adjustments. However, it’s a great long-term strategy to manage customer satisfaction.
In short, improving customer satisfaction is both a marathon and a sprint. You should start today to utilize short-term strategies while creating systems for long-term satisfaction monitoring and management. These long-term strategies are where Beambox comes in.
Did you know that Beambox runs an all-in-one WiFi marketing platform that allows you to automate feedback collection? Through utilizing captive portal systems, Beambox helps businesses to monitor satisfaction passively.
When guests join your WiFi, they will reach a page with a form of your choice. This page blocks them from accessing WiFi until they input the details you request. And if you wish, you can make this a feedback form. We then funnel these details into an immense database, where you can analyze the valuable data.
Our WiFi platform is one of the leading ways to collect guest satisfaction feedback passively. Are you ready to take control of the customer satisfaction levels in your business? Start your Beambox free trial today.
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