The Best Types of Discount Codes to Create Returning Customers

Restaurant Marketing

October 12, 2021
Restaurant Marketing

Convincing customers to patronize your restaurant can be difficult even if your business is doing everything right. With so much information about restaurant offerings available today, it’s no small wonder that the question “what do you want for dinner?” is so often met with uncertainty.

You can inspire your customers to visit your restaurant providing them with discounts that help cut down on their costs. We have come up with a list of the best discount codes to give your customers if you want to turn them into repeat visitors.

• Fixed-fee discounts

The basic concept of a fixed-fee discount is that it provides customers with a certain amount of money off of a menu item. For example, you could reduce the price of your restaurant’s signature burger to generate buzz. Instead of costing £12 for a burger and fries, you could knock the price down to £10 (or even £9.99).

That will inspire people to come to your restaurant to get a good deal on a meal, and it will increase the likelihood of them increasing their ticket price since they saved money.  

• Percentage-based discounts

Another great discount code is to provide percentage-based discounts on a customer’s total ticket price. For the most part, restaurants should keep to easily calculable percentages (10% or 20%) so customers can estimate the amount they are saving.

Giving out percentage-based discount codes to your customers encourages higher ticket sales. After all, people tend to view discounted totals as how much they could have spent for the same meal if it were not discounted.

• Free dish when you spend over a certain amount of money

People love to feel that they are getting something for nothing. You can attract customers to your restaurant by offering them a discount code that promises a free dish when they spend a specific amount at your business.

Some of the dishes that work best include desserts and appetizers because they are small dishes that people love but aren't always keen to spend money on. It’s also possible to have multiple discount opportunities available for certain price points.

For example, you could offer:

•  A free drink at £20

•  Free dessert or appetizer at £50

•  Free entree at £75

If you are feeling particularly generous, you could make all these discounts cumulative, providing the free item as the customer reaches each price point.

• Loyalty schemes

Loyalty programs are highly beneficial to restaurants because they encourage repeat customers and the creation of "regulars”, the kind of people that stop at your business after work for the same meal or drink every day. The premise of a loyalty-based discount code is simple.

You either give your customers a physical stamp ticket to add points do each time they have a meal, or you set up a digital loyalty tracker through your POS system. Either way, customers earn rewards as they eat at your establishment, eventually gaining a free meal.

• Free beer!

The greatest struggle facing any business is getting someone through the doors. If they can just do that, then they have a chance to entice them with their menu and convert a sale. Sometimes, the best way to get customers to walk through your restaurant’s doors is by giving them something free with no strings attached.

Free beer is more than enough to get someone to take a seat at your bar section, and it has the benefit of being a low-cost item that can result in sales. Customers that take advantage of this deal will often purchase a meal once they’re seated. The way they see it, they have to eat anyways, and they might as well get a free beer while they’re at it. Offer this type of discount code in your next email advertising campaign and watch as greater numbers of customers come to see what your business is all about.

Each of these discount codes can convert sales and create long-term customers. You simply must choose the one that works for the occasion or will benefit your business the most.

Depending on your menu prices and the type of sales you’re trying to promote, one or more of these discount codes can help you the most.