If you’re someone who manages a restaurant, this guide is for you. The winter months can slow down your business. There may be days when there may be less patrons than others.
That’s because the weather can be uncooperative. Not to mention, not a lot of people may not feel like traveling. We’ll discuss the following four changes restaurant management should make during the winter months.
By the time you’re finished, you can implement these as soon as today. If you need to give yourself some time to think over critical decisions for your business, no harm done. With that said, let’s take a look at the following list below:
1. Implement online ordering
We live in an age where online ordering is common. You might find yourself ordering something that you’re craving for dinner. Don’t forget, Uber Eats and Doordash are also being used (when and where available).
People can order online and pick it up themselves. Or they can have it delivered right to their door. Either way, it makes things easier for you as a member of restaurant management.
Your website should have an option where customers can order what they want online. They can order it now and pick it up in minutes. Or they can order it ahead of time and it’ll be ready by a specific date or time.
It will make things easier for them. They might have a busy day and don’t feel like cooking. So ordering in (and ahead of time) just might be the solution.
It’s convenient at the click of a mouse (or the tap of an app). Online ordering is quite common nowadays. Is your restaurant on board with it?
This can be convenient during the winter months. Especially with time being a factor. If oncoming inclement weather approaches, better to grab the order on time than never at all.
2. Utilize restaurant consulting services
If you need help making a few changes, you can always hire a restaurant consulting firm. What they can do is provide insights that are valuable. They can also give you recommendations on what you can do to improve your restaurant.
They’ll give you recommendations on how to operate and provide you with productivity tips. This can even come right down to the design of the menu, your marketing strategy, and everything else in between.
Consulting services won’t be cheap. But if you are looking for someone to hire, it may be a good idea to find one that will fit your budget. The more high-end a consulting service is, the more they’ll command in terms of a consultation fee.
Review your budget and see if you have enough to hire a consulting service before making a decision.
3. Consider investments in marketing your restaurant
Like any other business, getting the word out is key. That’s where your marketing strategy will come into play. You’ll want to make sure the strategy itself is in tune.
One of the best tools to use for marketing is social media. With so many people on their smartphones, there’s a good chance they’re scrolling through social media. You can take advantage of the paid ad platforms and put together ad campaigns for special promotions or something similar.
What makes them great is that you can create ads for specific target audiences and demographics. Don’t believe us? Check out the Facebook ad dashboard as a good example.
You can be able to set it up to see which local area sees the ad. It can also be whittled down to certain demographics such as gender, age, and the distance away from the local area. For example, if you’re a restaurant that is promoting a ‘Ladies Night’ at your bar, then set up an ad that specifically targets females.
It can be an ad that will imply something like ‘making a girl’s night out’ memorable. Aside from paid ads, you can also do organic social media posts. Marketing for restaurants has never been easier with social media posts.
You can post specials on food, drinks, and so much more. You can also post behind the scenes on what’s going on. You can even tease new additions to the menu coming soon.
There is so much you can do with social media marketing. However, this isn’t the only tool you can use to your advantage. You can even use email marketing to keep people in the know.
All you need is their email address and you can send them regular emails. It can be upcoming promotionals, discounts on their next meal or drink, or something similar. And last, but not least, there’s the standard advertising such as radio, print, and television.
4. Match the menu with winter-themed foods
During the winter months, you might consider dishes that are more hearty. This can include but is not limited to soups, stews, and other foods that your patrons will consider comforting. These menu additions may be temporary or permanent, per your decision.
But you can offer plenty of options for warm meals that they can enjoy. While the weather outside can be frightful, there’s nothing like a freshly cooked meal that they can be happy with. Expanding the menu with holiday favorites will always be something worth considering.
Who knows – you can do this throughout specific times of the year. For example, the summer months can feature ice cream desserts for those hot days.
If you are looking to consider making changes to your restaurant this winter, these four mentioned above should be something worth following. As a member of restaurant management, it’s all about your patrons and what makes them happy.
They’ll always keep coming back for more – even on days where the weather cooperates. Some days, they might not want to venture out in the cold. That’s where delivery and takeout services will come in handy.
Implement these changes as soon as you can. You might find that it will do more good than harm for your restaurant.
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