OpenTable is a well-known table reservation software and guest management platform for restaurants. The company offers a solution for taking reservations online, improving waitlist management, rewarding diners, viewing analytics, and more.
Depending on what you are looking for, OpenTable may not offer all of the tools that restaurant management requires. OpenTable has an app for diners to make bookings and for restaurants to manage table reservations. But it doesn’t include a complete set of tools for event management, prospecting, and more.
If you need software extending beyond a restaurant booking system, it's worth considering an OpenTable alternative like Perfect Venue.
Perfect Venue is an all-in-one event management platform used by unique venues, independent restaurants, and hospitality groups. What’s more, it doesn’t have to replace OpenTable - you can integrate the two platforms to get the best of both worlds. This is especially useful if you regularly host private dining parties or events at your restaurant.
Let’s look at this in more detail.
About OpenTable’s Restaurant Management System
OpenTable is an online restaurant management system focused on streamlining reservations. Restaurants use the software for marketing their venue and managing bookings.
As a venue, you can use OpenTable’s restaurant reservation software to tap into the platform’s network of diners. You can optimize waitlists and improve the guest experience through convenient online bookings. It’s also possible to use it for table management and planning, as well as to set up floor plans.
Diners can use the OpenTable app to discover restaurants in their area and read and leave reviews. The app also acts as a reservation system for diners to make online restaurant bookings. This is OpenTable’s main selling point - the great diner-facing app, which includes an expansive network of restaurants for people to discover.
We won’t go into too much detail on OpenTable here, as you can read more about it in our OpenTable review. What we will say is, as a complete event management system for restaurants, the platform is lacking.
This is because OpenTable has been designed for managing parties sitting at tables, typically a couple or a small group of friends, but it is often lacking beyond groups of 10 or more. Other platforms can provide more features and tools for teams in charge of event and venue management.
About Perfect Venue’s Event Management Software
Perfect Venue is an intuitive event management platform for unique venues, including restaurants, breweries, and hospitality groups. As an event management system, you get a wide variety of tools and features to make staying on top of related restaurant operations easier.
Venue managers can organize their events from a central dashboard. Here, a straightforward calendar view provides access to details related to specific events and restaurant reservations. You can also access insightful analytics for your business.
A library of email templates and company documents is available, making it easier to stay on top of communications, marketing, and event planning. For example, built-in digital proposals help you make quick work of sending proposals to potential clients. By getting to the top of their inboxes, you can secure more deals.
Once you have landed the deal, send contracts to clients from your dashboard to sign online and return. It’s also possible to process invoices, payments, and order updates from this central point.
Automations are available on Perfect Venue. For example, you can automatically send PDF documents to customers or leads who you are nurturing. Or, automate reminder notifications about upcoming events or tasks that require your customers’ attention.
Perfect Venue differs from OpenTable as it's not a dedicated restaurant table reservation system. Instead, it’s a more robust event management system that you can use to organize special events, contact leads, manage customers, and more.
OpenTable and Perfect Venue - a Perfect Complement to Private Dining
If you are already using OpenTable and want to elevate your dining experience, there is a perfect solution. Connect up OpenTable with Perfect Venue.
The two work well together in that the former is great for small dining parties of 1 to 10 people. Diners can book online, and you can manage their reservations and table arrangement. But, as the party numbers climb, the logistics around planning become more complex.
In larger groups, guests will likely have specific dietary, menu, and/or beverage requirements. Also, the person booking may want a quote for the event upfront. Not forgetting your planning team, who need to create menus, order ingredients, and bring the whole event together.
It’s at this point when you have parties of 10 or more people that you need Perfect Venue. The partnership with OpenTable seamlessly combines private dining inquiries and reservation management.
As mentioned, OpenTable and Perfect Venue integrate. You can find out exactly how to do it in this article. But, to give you an overview of the integrated workflow, connecting them up will load your private party inquiries and requests directly into Perfect Venue.
Once that’s done, guests will be able to quickly contact your restaurant to find out about the private dining options available. The complementary integration allows you to market your venue to OpenTable’s network, gather leads, and respond to inquiries.
When bookings come through, you get the best of both worlds. It’s a powerful table management system to elevate the guest experience, manage events, and organize the team.
OpenTable Alternatives: Options To Take Online Restaurant Reservations
If your restaurant is in the market for table reservation software and not quite ready to host larger private dining functions, we’ve still got some great ideas for you. Read up on the Top 4 reservation apps for restaurants in this post.
It's critical for any busy restaurant to have a solid restaurant reservation system. Recent research shows that over 80% of restaurants use technology to help them run their business successfully. This includes tech for online ordering, reservation and inventory management, and restaurant analytics.
Many platforms help restaurants with marketing and managing tables. Some are designed mainly around online reservations and improving customer loyalty. In contrast, others include a more comprehensive set of tools for event management and working with a team.
OpenTable is a popular platform for good reason. They’ve been around for a long time and have developed a platform that works for both diners and restaurants. However, this doesn’t mean it’s the best solution for everyone.
If your venue hosts events that require team tasks, event analytics, automatic documents, and one-click templates, why not try out Perfect Venue for free? Our platform is affordable and easy to use, with stellar customer service to boot.