Friday, July 27th, 2018 .

We could wax poetic about Waitlist Me’s bells and whistles for hours (and we have!). But, honestly, one of our favorite bonuses that comes with implementing a waitlist and reservation app is getting rid of bad waiting room symptoms that begin to infect customers.

Let’s take a look at some of the annoying waiting maladies and behaviors that Waitlist Me helps do away with (and appreciate just how much better the customer experience is with a waitlist app). Here are 5 classic moves:

The toe-tapper

Who needs music wafting from a speaker when you could keep time to the beat of the toe-tapper’s sneaker on your tile floor? We joke, of course. We know you’re turning up the dial and pricing out carpet in order to drown this sucker out. Their tap-tap-tap won’t make tables turn over any faster, but it certainly can drive your host crazy (along with anyone else who’s waiting). The rhythmic nature of the toe tapping makes it more likely to spread to a variety of fidgeting activities around the room, creating a rather tense environment.

The eagle-eye

We’re certain some eagle-eyes honed their behavior early on as hall monitors. A training ground of tardy students prepared them well for their next mission: us. Now, they’ve set their sights on guests lingering too long over dessert and front-of-house staff dilly-dallying behind the hostess stand. Ever feel like you’re being…watched? We know exactly who to pin that on.

The disappearing-act

Some people have the gift of invisibility. They can disappear into a crowd, blend in seamlessly, fade into the background or jump right into the action like they were born there. This disappearing-act pulls a fast one, all right—right out your door without so much as a word of warning. Will you see them again? Sure, about 20 minutes after you call their name (and give their spot to the next person in line).

The slump-and-sigh

The burdens of the world have to rest on somebody’s, shoulders. Why not the slump-and-sigh? After all, that’s what it looks like once you give them their ETA. They take their seat with a sigh that bespeaks inner turmoil greater than 10 minutes ‘til “the doctor can see you now.” And if they have to stand? This one morphs into the hunch-and-groan. Sigh.

The watch-watcher

Need to know the time? There’s always someone in your waiting room you can ask, although we’re not entirely sure you’d want to. Whether they’re old-school with a wrist watch, analog with a wall clock, or high-tech with the latest iPhone, the watch-watcher tracks their own countdown, thankyouverymuch. And if your wait-time guesstimate is off by so much as a minute, well, you can expect to hear about it. This another of the more infectious behaviors. If you have a diligent watch-watcher in the group, you’ll definitely see an uptick in the unconscious time checking behaviors from others in the room.

The solution

You can’t always get rid of waiting, but Waitlist Me helps you make the wait experience better by giving guests more visibility into the wait process and the flexibility to leave the waiting room and be notified with a text when you are ready for them.

Let the toe-tapper and eagle-eye work off some of their nervous energy by walking around outside while they wait. Help the disappearing-act know the right time to be back with a well-timed text message. Take some of the worries of endless or unpredictable waits off the slump-and-sighs shoulders. And show the watch-watcher you care by using real time wait tracking to give better estimates and deliver on the promised wait times.

Monday, March 26th, 2018 .

The countdown is officially on. For Lent observers, 40 long days of fasting are almost over. But for you and your restaurant, Sunday marks the beginning of a brand-new holiday season.

Push away those last-minute worries, boss, because everything really is gonna be all right. Waitlist Me is the app you need to ensure your holiday brunch, lunch, and dinner services run smoother than a hand-dyed egg rolling down a grassy hill.

Go ahead and put on your Easter best. We’ve got your holiday rush completely under control. Here’s how we’re helping you improve your customer service today:

Nixing MIA reservations

The worst problem customers face on big holidays like Easter Sunday is lost reservations. When your restaurant relies on overstuffed date books and grease boards, though, hostesses get used to saying, “What was the name again? I’m not seeing it in the book.”

Your guests deserve better, and Waitlist Me Premium helps you stay organized and manage your reservations in one location that you can access from multiple iPads or Android tablets.  You can even login from your home computer or your smart phone to keep tabs on your reservations.

Setting guests free

Kids stuffed into khakis and sun dresses as the sun rises on Easter morning aren’t the best at standing quietly in a restaurant lobby. And with spring in full bloom and sun in the forecast, adults don’t want to be cooped up, either.

That’s why Waitlist Me let’s ‘em run wild. The text notification feature does away with diners’ worries about losing their place in line. Now, they can wander. Whether they choose to window shop, walk down the block, or hang out in the car, one quick text lets them know when their table is ready.

Decluttering hostess stands

Remember those high school presentations where you stood at the front of the class and fumbled through your speaking points? Yep, that’s what it feels like to be a host who is drowning in sticky notes and chicken scratch while a hungry crowd looks on.

Luckily, those days are behind us. Waitlist Me’s intuitive interface makes adding and seating dining parties a cinch. With just a single glance at the app’s home screen, hosts can see who’s waiting and what reservations are walking through the door, no squinting or second-guessing required.

Offering on-the-go waitlists

For every lucky duck that slips in your door ahead of the rush, there’s the slew of folks behind them grumbling about why they didn’t leave sooner. Now, bad traffic or treks from far-flung parking lots don’t have to impact wait times.

By adding the Waitlist Me widget to your website or social media page, you can allow your guests to add themselves to your waitlist on their own time. It doesn’t matter if they’re just leaving church or hunting down one last Easter egg. In a few quick swipes, they can hop on line from a pew, a parking lot, or a park.

Distracting guests while they wait

There’s something about pulling out a smartphone while waiting with the family on Easter Sunday that’s a little bit awkward. But that doesn’t mean your diners want to stare at the floor until their name is called.

Waitlist Me lets you put your business on display, right in your lobby. It offers a completely customizable public waitlist feature that can show your brand colors, logo, upcoming events, or current holiday specials, while they check their place in line. You can even include graphics and videos. Pull it up on any TV or monitor, and you’re good to go.  Guests can also check it from their phones, through a link in the confirmation notification.

Wednesday, June 14th, 2017 .

Building on our launch of table section management features a few months ago, we have added some new features to make it even easier to know where to seat the next customer.  Labeled mode displays valuable activity metrics, section notes help you track servers covering each section, and additional waitlist integration makes it faster to do more from the table management screen.  Here is a video that highlights some of these new features and shows more on how to set up your section and layout management strategies:

 

Labeled mode

In “Labeled” mode, you’ll also see additional details about each section.  The “Open” metric shows the number of available tables as well as the total available seats at those tables.  The “Filled” metric shows the percentage of seats occupied in a section along with the counts of the occupied and total seats.  These key stats help make smarter decisions faster.  For instance, when a group comes in that’s too big for one table, you can instantly see which sections have enough empty tables, with enough empty seats, to accommodate them.  And you can also see how many of the seats in each section are filled, and ensure that each server gets their fair share of the work, not just their fair share of the tables.  These metrics are also visible in the “Size” and “Status” sorts for seeing breakdowns of availability by table size or overall status.

 

Section Notes

You can add comments to each section—for instance, to identify who’s working where, or to leave a reminder about a special event.  Just tap “Add Notes,” fill in your remarks, and then tap “Save.”  Instead of having to set up complicated server scheduling or other section tracking processes, the notes feature lets you make updates faster and more naturally.  It’s as easy as the common practice of writing server names on a laminated floor plan, but with all the advantages that our app has to offer for seeing real-time data, easily knowing where to seat the next customer, syncing information across devices, and more.

 

More Waitlist Integration

If you like working within the table management view of the app, it is nice to be able to assign customers from the waitlist, notify them their table is ready, and seat them at the table without having to switch back to the waitlist view.  Now you can.

From the action bar, when you tap on add, you can choose someone who’s already on your waiting list, and serve them at that table, right now.  If the table is already occupied, this removes the old party from the waitlist, and seats the new one, with one tap.

Or, if you’re not ready to seat them yet, you can just “assign” them to use that table next.  If the new customer has stepped away, you can even make the assignment and also send them an SMS text message, asking them to come back.  When they’re ready to take their seats, just tap on the table, and then tap “Next.”

You can also add a new customer by tapping a table.  Just fill in their name, phone number, and other details.  The table has already been selected, so you can go ahead and seat the customer right now, or add them to your waitlist, or even make a reservation, all in one place.

 

Quick Seating

When you aren’t crowded you probably seat customers at tables without taking their name.  You can still track that the table is occupied and for how long by using the status button in the action bar.  This makes it easy to keep track of your availability without having to create a customer for each table.  You may want to start tracking your table availability at a certain time, like before it gets busy, and you can mark all your tables that are currently occupied all at once.  Just press and hold on one table to use the multi-select feature, then tap on all the tables that are occupied, and then tap the status button to make them occupied.

Thursday, February 11th, 2021 .

Due to increased fees by mobile phone carriers for delivering text notifications, we will be raising the subscription price of Waitlist Premium on March 1, 2021 to help offset these additional costs.  The new fees levied by phone companies are industry-wide and affect every service that sends text notifications, not only Waitlist Me. 

Waitlist Premium Monthly will change from $24.99 to $29.99 and Waitlist Me Premium Annual will go from $239.88 to $287.88.  The subscription prices for Waitlist Me Pro and Waitlist Me Platinum will not change.

We are still committed to providing the best value to our customers and even with the price increase will still have considerably lower prices than other comparable offerings. We also add value to the Waitlist Me service on an ongoing basis through new features and improved performance.

Friday, May 15th, 2015 .

We are happy to announce some exciting new ways waitlist technology is being used to help restaurant operators better serve their customers.  Through the use of the Waitlist Me API, these new solutions will be on display for the first time during the National Restaurant Association Restaurant, Hotel-Motel Show. The app will be showcased during the show, May 16-19 in Chicago, through partnerships with BrightSign and Clover.

brightsign

 

With BrightSign, the global market leader in digital signage players, restaurants can now display a public view of their waitlist on their digital signage so it is easy for customers to check their place in line without needing to bother the hostess. The flexibility of the BrightSign integration lets restaurants fully customize the look and feel of their waitlist so it looks like a natural extension of their menu board or other digital signage.

bsn_home_banner2

 

Restaurants operators can also tailor their customer-facing experience to their brand while using the Waitlist Me apps and service to easily manage their waitlist and page customers with text and call notifications.

It is exciting how well the BrightSign integration empowers restaurants to create displays with designs limited only by their imagination. We are very happy to be working with a company like BrightSign that shares our values of building scalable and reliable solutions that are easy to use and maintain.

Clover is another Waitlist Me partner that will have new things to show off at this year’s NRA Show.  The new Clover Mobile device, announced in April, lets businesses add customers to the waitlist right at the door as well as allowing status updates to be made from other parts of the store or restaurant.

Clover is at the forefront of creating better and more elegant POS hardware and solutions for businesses, and has a robust App Market for third-party developers. Because of the deeper integration Clover allows, Waitlist Me is able to offer more efficient tools for businesses and better experiences for their customers on the Clover platform.

Waitlist Me just recently announced its API earlier this year with Enplug as the first partner, and has several more projects in progress.

We want to help improve wait experiences everywhere, and integrations with companies like BrightSign and Clover highlight the power of the Waitlist Me platform.  By extending our waitlist management features and best-in-class text and phone notification infrastructure to work in other products, we can solve a wider set of needs together than with our service alone.

For more information on partnership opportunities, contact support@waitlist.me