No-Shows have become a massive headache for operators in our industry, affecting restaurant sales directly. I call this trend from customers ''Restaurant Promiscuity'', in essence - Zero or Very Little Loyalty!
I think starting with a good reservation software system is important. One that is modern and congruent with peoples desire to respond, or in this case lack of desire to cancel their reservation.
In hotels in order to reduce no-shows it has been known to overbook the hotel at the same time as guests can book many different types of rooms and different packages, the cheaper rates are usually Non Refundable bookings this way even if the guest does not arrive the room is paid for in full.
The problem of restaurant no-shows has been a consistent problem for businesses for many years. Quite recently London and other large cities experienced issues of customers booking multiple restaurants for tables at the same time and then deciding which venue they would actually arrive at without cancelling the other bookings.