As we continue to adjust to “the new norms” of home and business, it’s imperative that we’re working together to share best practices for restaurants to survive COVID-19 and set the stage for the months ahead.
The Restaurant Industry is more than our lively hood; it’s our way of life. We connect with our communities over great food from our favorite places; every event worth celebrating has cohesion around the table where great bites and stories come together; it’s our mission to keep as many doors open as possible so that when the lock downs are lifted, our favorite restaurants are still open and ready to do what they do best–bring people together in the name of great food and sense of community.
Many of the tips and suggestions will continue to hold true well past this pandemic, so at the risk of being redundant, we want to share our list of best practices to keep your doors open, and some cash moving:
1. Sign up for all 3rd party delivery platforms in your zipcode. Each platform will drive incremental sales. Delivery apps are up 50% in volume in the last 2 weeks, per CEO of Ordermark, the industry’s most powerful platform for managing online ordering business.
2. Sell from the bar: Add mixed drinks, bottles of wine, beer, etc to your takeout menu with food purchase.
3. Add grocery items to your online menus: Add staples, like milk, eggs, toliet paper, etc. Instacart has recently gone on strike and 3rd party delivery platforms are making it easy for restaurants to be “grocerants.”
4. Offer DIY Dinners/Meal Kits/Family Packs to your menus. Create “dinner and an activity” family-friendly options as well as “DIY date night desserts” for after the kiddos are in bed.
5. Run Promotions! Bring in new customers by offering a roll of TP for orders over $50, a few pair of gloves with a meal kit purchase, etc. New customers will be prompted with a “reorder” option on 3rd party delivery sites so a one-time promotion pays off in repeat business.
6. Promote Giftcard purchases.
7. Stay active on Social Media. Make sure your community knows you are open for pick up and delivery, and know you’re selling grocery items.
8. Advertise the precautions you are taking. Add a note to takeout bags with the steps your teams take, post on social, etc. ServSafe is offering free online Food Handler training (as well as delivery/takeout advice) through April 30th.
9. Offer free delivery. You’ll drive 3-4x more delivery volume.
10. Ask for help! Call us. If you’re part of Leverage–reach out, and let’s talk through other ideas and ways we can support you. If you’re not a member, call us. We’ll explain our program and show you how we can help.
And remember–people don’t want to leave their homes. They feel safer with delivery than touching shopping carts and being exposed to others; give them plenty of reasons to stay home and order from you. And then breathe, hug your family (the ones under your roof at least), and know we’re in this with you.