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David Charlton

September 6 2019,
David Charlton

How hard will your hospitality business ‘trie’ to get die-hard rugby fans into your venues during the World Cup? Venues across the country are getting a game plan together for an event that will boost revenue as autumn kicks in.

LR - AT - Rugby - headerWith opportunities for hospitality businesses to convert browsers to bottom line, such as online bookings and click and collect, it’s worth checking what shape your reservation and ordering systems are in before kickoff. There are some quick wins that those within the industry can implement to make this key event a success.

107-conversions-scored-by-the-England-rugby-team107 conversions scored by the England rugby team

Conversions aren’t just important in rugby, they are vital for businesses too - with 45% of guests preferring to make reservations online. Whether your customers want to celebrate in the local pub, restaurant, or hotel, making a confirmed reservation as easy as possible will increase conversions for your business.

For the 20% that still like using the phone, tools such as liveRES Bookings by Phone will ensure that every call is answered.

Add to this the fact that almost a quarter of customers are now using online click and collect, and the opportunity to convert browsers into customers online is fantastic.

Rugby fans all over the world will be glued to a screen if they can’t make it to Japan, and they need to be fed — £113.99 is spent on average monthly on click and collect food and beverages, according to the latest GO Technology report.

131-penalties-scored147 tries scored

Understanding customer preferences will help you to turn rugby fans into loyal customers that come back, so it’s worth using your customer data to learn what your guests like.

The GO Technology report found that 37% of customers dislike queuing or waiting, 42% are particular about their favourite place to sit, and 1 in 3 like a call that adds a personal touch.

Worried about no-shows? Don’t assume that people will be put off by deposits, especially for a group booking for a special event; research shows that customers are willing to pay an average deposit of £6.63 per head.

131 penalties scored

Front of house might drive home a penalty, but it’s a team that wins the game. In the hospitality industry, this is the well-oiled machine that is formed between people, processes, and powerful software — it’s also the process of learning.

The finale in this Rugby World Cup master plan is the feedback - which is possibly the most powerful tool a hospitality business has to keep those reviews positive.

By using a tool such as Feed It Back, you can learn how your customers feel you performed - build on the positive and make changes where necessary.

Rugby World Cup 2019 scrum summary:

  1. Invest in an online booking platform to convert website browsers to bookings.
  2. Explore click and collect for those customers that prefer to dine in their own home.
  3. Turn rugby fans into loyal customers by understanding their preferences:
    1. Have the table or food order ready as promised — no queuing or waiting (37% dislike this).
    2. Charge the right deposit — Go Technology reports an average of £6.63 per head is acceptable to customers, and it will avoid no-shows for group bookings.
    3. Cater to preferences — 42% are particular about their favourite place to sit.
    4. Stay in touch — 1 in 3 like a call that adds a personal touch.
  4. Learn from your customers — look at tools like Feed It Back.

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