How to greet your restaurant customers

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A greeting to a restaurant customer should take place within 30 seconds of his or her arrival. Along with promptness, the words and expressions used to greet customers are important and may influence the patrons' current and future decisions to dine there.

A sincere, warm welcome can make the difference between a satisfied and unsatisfied customer.

Decide on two or three greetings that you can use to welcome customers to your restaurant. Go beyond a standard "Good morning, good afternoon or good evening" and think of something more original such as "Hello, welcome to _____. Are you enjoying your day?"

Greet the customer warmly and with enthusiasm. Make eye contact and smile sincerely. If you know the customer's name, use it in your greeting. "Hello __, it's good to see you. Have you been taking advantage of the beautiful weather we're having?"

Listen to the customer's response if you ask a question. You want him or her to feel important and special. Treat all customers appropriately, including children and those with disabilities. Everyone is a customer and should be treated with respect and attention to special needs.