Owning a restaurant is not a “get rich quick” operation. It takes a lot of time, money, and business intellect to run a successful restaurant. Even if you have all these things, it often takes a decent amount of time for your restaurant to become profitable after opening. At the same time, there are some rather quick and simple tactics that you can undertake to increase the profitability of your restaurant in a short amount of time. Some of these ideas require getting a little creative, but you must already be creative if you are in the restaurant industry! Of course, these ideas will not make you profitable overnight, but implementing them correctly and efficiently will have you well on your way to being profitable by 2020!
Upselling is often considered the golden tool of entrepreneurs – why not integrate it into your restaurant business? Your staff should be well-trained in the art of upselling. Upselling is an art because it is more than just sales, it requires a certain level of perception and discretion towards the customer. It also requires knowledge of the menu offerings and profit margins on different items. The goal is to make upselling look more like good customer service than sales. There are several different methods to upselling, but they all help to increase profit! You can offer more expensive items to customers than the one they originally ordered, you can offer extra items that will make the meal more expensive, you can offer specific items – like the delicious soup of the day, and you can make specific suggestions or recommendations to the customer. Most importantly, though, the staff needs to be genuine towards the customer and show enthusiasm about the food. One good way to help the staff achieve this is to have them try things on the menu so that they can make legitimate recommendations based on actual experience – not just what you tell them they need to be suggesting that night. Customers will be able to see through that and it is important that the customer actually enjoys what is recommended.
Increase Energy Efficiency
Energy efficiency is such an easy thing to overlook somehow, despite how expensive your power bill is every month! Making just a few easy changes in this area can increase your energy efficiency and save you a decent chunk of change every month that can really add up quickly! One easy way to do this is through the thermostat inside your restaurant. By increasing the standard temperature by a couple of degrees in the summer and lowering it by a couple of degrees in the winter, you stand to save a lot in energy costs throughout the year. Another way is to keep an eye on the temperature of your refrigerators and make sure that it is not dropping lower than it needs to be throughout the day. This is an easy step that takes maybe a couple minutes a day but can save you a lot on energy costs! There is always also the option of installing motion sensor lights in areas that do not have to be lit like bathrooms and freezers. While these lights may cost a little bit of extra money to install, they will earn their money back in saved energy costs in no time, so it is a solid investment.
Implement a Mobile POS System
Today, people expect to get what they want quickly! A mobile POS system can help to increase efficiency in your restaurant as well as give you access to all the data you could possibly need to make smarter business decisions in the future. A good POS system is an invaluable tool that will pay for itself in no time at all. It can immediately send orders to the kitchen and help customers to pay quicker as well. This leads to shorter wait times, faster turnover, and overall a more seamless dining experience for your customers. So not only will you be able to get more customers in due to quicker turnover, but your customers will also be more satisfied with their service and will be more likely to return as a result. While implementing a new POS system can be a little costly upfront, restaurant loans are a good option that can help you pay for the initial cost of implementing a new system.
Offer Special Events
Whether you are hosting your own restaurant event or allowing people to book their own events in your restaurant space, both options are feasible ways to quickly increase your profit by increasing the number of heads inside. Many people are always looking for something fun to do, so give them something to spice up their experience! Some ideas for this include charity events, sports watch parties, wine tastings, ladies’ night…the possibilities are endless! Just make sure to implement something that complements the theme and vibe of your restaurant. Hosting these events on weeknights too can help increase the level of customers during times in which the numbers might usually be lower. Furthermore, you can offer customers the option to host their own events, such as birthday or anniversary parties, bridal or baby showers, and corporate events in your restaurant space and catering your food. This can also help increase the headcount as well as act as a potential marketing tool for the attendees of the event – if they are impressed, they might want to have their own event at your restaurant next time!