Regardless of your operation’s size, type or location, turning a profit in the restaurant business is always a challenge. That’s because you have to stay on top of everything from inventory and staff scheduling to marketing and menu design. Therefore, knowing how to make money in the restaurant business comes from knowing how to manage it all.
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10 Strategies That Make a Restaurant Profitable
You understand what does and doesn’t work. However, every restaurant owner and manager can use a fresh overview. Consider these 10 money-making tips for all types of food service operations.
1. Let Professionals Handle Your Marketing
Do you cater to all demographics in a fast, casual atmosphere? Or do guests choose your location for its white tablecloth service?
You know your customers. However, connecting with them takes a unique skill set. Therefore, outsource your marketing to professionals. They know how to promote your restaurant in print, online and across social media channels.
2. Make Your Website Work for You
When potential customers visit your website, satisfy their online appetites. Give them quick-click access to menus. Entice them with your latest promotions. Engage them with content covering entertainment and points of interest in the area. Make your website work as an open invitation for new business and a familiar door for regulars.
3. Maintain a Social Media Presence
Good and bad things happen on social media. However, it’s your restaurant, so take responsibility for both.
Therefore, when someone posts a picture of your newest entree, come back with a thank you. Additionally, address review site compliments and complaints alike with a professional voice.
Your positive social media presence gives your restaurant a positive profile across all digital platforms. And that brings in business.
4. Get Better at Figuring Food Costs
As well as you understand food costs, get even better at crunching the numbers. Look for ways to improve inventory control and reduce product waste. Make sure your calculations don’t leave room for error and do allow for flexibility.
In short, know exactly how much you’re making on sales per shift, and pinpoint profits on promotions and discounts.
5. Source from the Very Best
Controlling food costs depends on high yield and minimum waste. Therefore, source quality ingredients from reputable suppliers with national reach like Boggiatto Produce.
Dealing with one vendor who consistently delivers premium products holds down costs. Further, it streamlines menu development that aligns per-serving costs with net profit targets.
6. Keep Menu Design Seasonal
Customers look forward to dining on favorite dishes that are only available once or twice a year. For this reason, menu entries designed around seasonal ingredients bring in business and ring up sales. This strategy also lets you take advantage of lower seasonal pricing, and that helps control food costs.
7. Power up with Business Software
In order to make money in the restaurant business, you have to track every dollar. Fortunately, there’s more than one app for that specifically developed for food service professionals.
Restaurant business software puts muscle in your POS system and helps manage tables.
From staff scheduling to accounting and analytics, restaurant management software helps you manage a stronger profit margin.
8. Invest in Quality Equipment
The cost of restaurant equipment failure can punch a hole in your bottom line that lasts for months. Therefore, buy the best you can afford. Then regularly schedule vendor maintenance.
Investing in quality equipment holds down the cost of routine repairs. And it heads off unexpected problems that can shut down your kitchen indefinitely.
9. Enlist Front and Back of House
Restaurant customers place a high value on good service. For this reason, make sure every member of you front-of-house staff understands the importance of meeting and exceeding those expectations.
On the other hand, first-time guests become regulars when the food is consistently good. Give back-of-house employees the support and training they need to keep customers coming back for more.
10. Contribute to the Community
When you give professional time to the community, you’re paid back in countless ways. Offer to direct healthy cooking classes for local organizations. Donate services, meals or cash to programs that address hunger issues.
Every contribution you make elevates your brand. And that’s good for business. It also gives you and your staff the opportunity to give back to the community that supports your restaurant. And that’s priceless ROI.
Position Yourself for Success in the Restaurant Business
It takes management skills, creative talent and endless patience to make a restaurant profitable. Stay on top of the latest technologies and ahead of the latest trends.
In addition, keep refreshing your overview of our ever-changing industry. In this way, you’ll always be positioned for long-term, money-making restaurant success.