Best Practices for writing Pre-visit Questions



In the Tock booking flow you are able to ask questions of your guests before the day of their reservation. You can use this opportunity to collect some crucial pieces of information such identifying any allergies or mobility concerns within a guest’s party. This is also an opportunity for you to ask more conversational questions. These answers have the power to increase the level of hospitality you can provide leading up to the reservation and better prepare for your guests arrival. Overall, by asking questions you are showing your guests that you are interested in their input and will use their responses to better their experience at your restaurant.

When are these questions asked?

Your questions are first presented to guests at the end of the booking flow, after they’ve completed their purchase. They have the ability to answer the questions right then and there, or choose to answer them at another time. Giving your guests some flexibility on when they can answer your questions ensures a higher quality of responses gathered.

If your guest does not respond at checkout, they are reminded in each email correspondence leading up to the reservation. The order of the follow-up emails are:

Confirmation Email: Sent immediately after the reservation is confirmed. There is a link to the questions for your guest.
Question Reminder Email: You get to configure the # of days ahead of the booking this is sent.
Reservation Reminder Email: Sent shortly before the day of the reservation, with the exact timing configured by you. As with all the prior emails, there is a link to the questions for your guest.

After your guest responds to the questions, they will not be reminded to complete the questions again and will not be able to edit their answers without calling you directly. This gives you time to respond and prepare accordingly based on their responses.

How do I setup my questions?

Questions are configured on a per experience basis. This is particularly helpful if you need to ask specific questions of your guests based on the pertinent experience (i.e. we don’t accommodate dietary requests at our Kitchen Table so I don’t want to ask about them). Each of your Experiences will have a section dedicated to questions. Here you can add new questions, edit existing questions, write introductory copy and configure the timing of your question reminder email.

If you’d like to see what your questions page looks like to your guests, we’ve included a “Preview” button in the top right corner that lets you do just that.

Different Types of Questions

Free-form Text
Best for asking open-ended questions. You are able to provide a prompt that your guests can respond to in a open text-field.

Ex: “Is there anything else you’d like us to know before your visit?”

Single Text Field
These are best used when you are looking for a single word response from your guest. Think of it like a “fill in the blank” question, which is shorter and more focused than a free-form text question.

Ex: “What city do you live in?”

Radio Button
The familiar old standby where guests are prompted and given multiple options to choose from. Multiple choice questions require the guest to select one option from the list. You can choose to configure this question type with only two options, most commonly used in a scenario where you need a yes/no response from a guest. Alternatively you can provide more than two options for the guest to choose from. In addition, we’ve built this question with the ability to add “Other” as one of the options to gather a miscellaneous response from your guest.

“Is this your first time visiting us?” (Yes/No)
“Are you celebrating anything special?” (Birthday/Anniversary/Graduation/Other)


Checkbox questions are another common question type where guests are asked to select all options that apply from the provided list. With checkboxes, multiple selections are allowed. For instance, if you were looking to ask your guests about any existing allergies or aversions, they would be able to select more than one of the listed options if it applied. Checkboxes also have the ability to configure “Other” as one of the options offered to your guest.

Ex: “If applicable, please select any dietary restrictions you have from the supported list below.” (Vegan, Vegetarian, Pescetarian)


Best Practices

When asking questions of your guests, it is best to keep in mind some general rules-of-thumb in order to ensure you get the highest response rate combined with thoughtful, accurate responses. You could say we are after both quality AND quantity here.

Keep it simple and be conscious of their time
Understand that your guests are doing you a favor by taking time answer questions. Try your best to avoid asking elaborate questions or questions that have the potential of confusing your guests. These will most likely result in fewer overall responses and discourage your guests from completing your questionnaire.

Limit the number of open-ended questions
Ask your questions in a simple, well defined manner. By asking a simpler question you will get a more clearly defined answer that will be easier to accommodate. Remember that by asking these questions you are setting the expectation that you will read and respond accordingly to their answer. It is in your best interest to keep questions focused.

Ask one question at a time
Expecting guests to answer multiple questions with a single answer is tough. If you MUST have answers to these questions, try breaking them up so each question can be answered individually.

Aim for 3-5 questions max
Asking any more than 3-5 questions tends to lead to question fatigue. Try your best to prioritize what you are asking of your guests.


New Guest Experience - Need to Know
What's New – June 5, 2018
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