One of the simplest and most useful ways to evaluate your food truck business is to request and follow-up on customer feedback. Your customers are always the best judge of whether you’re delivering a great experience or a crummy one. And honestly, most people like when you ask for their opinion, and it’s these opinions that will give you the information you need to grow and strengthen your food truck.
Requesting customer feedback is a great way to learn about what you’re doing right, developing new ideas, and pin-pointing weaknesses in your food truck’s armor. There are several ways to acquire customer feedback and even more ways to make the most of them. Here are some ideas concerning customer feedback for your food truck, courtesy of One Fat Frog Restaurant Equipment.
The rise in social media has brought about a wealth of opportunities for discovering what your customers think of your food truck. Also, your food truck’s online identity can help you broaden your customer base and reach out to folks who may not be local. The folks within you food truck’s social media sphere should be considered like a focus group for your business.
Always answer online feedback as soon as possible, ideally within 48 hours. Even if it’s just a simple “thanks” for some positive review that was left. For negative feedback, handle the complaint with the goal of restoring the person’s trust in you and your food truck. NEVER strike back at them online. Do your best to reconcile the situation.
Comment cards also provide an outlet for feedback. Comment cards should be kept simple, but make sure on the card there’s a spot for the customer to put down their name and email address. Offer customers something in return for filling out surveys or comment cards – you could email them a coupon, for example. The downside of comment cards is that they’re not too great at gauging trend changes in customers’ opinions.
Talking to your customers face-to-face is the easiest way to acquire feedback. You can do this at the service window or you or an employee can stand nearby and discuss the customer experience as it is going on. Pay close attention to what the customers are saying and write it down in a notebook for later analysis.
You should always encourage your staff to develop strong relationships with customers, so that they are more open and comfortable talking about their dining experience. Remember, your employees are also a strong asset for gathering and analyzing customer feedback!
Now that you have gathered customer feedback, it’s time to sift through it. First you should read through the comments a few times and place them into categories. These categories can include food, speed, customer service, location, and pricing.
Once you’ve got your categories written down, separate lists for positive and negative feedback. Once this is done, review the comments again and look for patterns. If you notice many of the same things commented on, look for specifics and figure out how to fix the problem. If you notice one particular employee mentioned in several negative comments, be sure to discuss the comments with that employee in a private meeting.