After months of keeping your restaurant shut down for health and safety reasons, you may be looking forward to reopening safely. Though you may have a clover card machine at the ready for quick and easy purchases, and a franchise POS system to boot, you might still be worried about making the reopening a fiscal success without risking the health of your employees or customers. Even though it’ll take a little extra planning, strategizing and creative thinking, it’s possible to reopen your restaurant after COVID-19 by using these guidelines.
1. Ramp Up Helpful Technology and Open in Stages If Needed
In a tough financial and public health situation, you may need to lean on up-to-date technology to make things easier. For instance, you can check the latest clover flex price and see whether an upgraded POS system is doable for your business. Additionally, you can use this technology to make opening in stages easier. For instance, you could have customers pay online while you’re still just offering takeout.
2. Kick Your Delivery and Takeout Options Up a Notch
While it’s not the same experience as dining in, delivery and takeout are likely to be strong industry trends for the foreseeable future. You should have distanced outdoor seating available on site if at all possible, but make sure you have a smooth takeout and delivery system in place as well. These options are sure to be in high demand and could in fact provide the bulk of your revenue in the upcoming months.
3. Add Incentives Like Gift Cards or Discounts To Attract Customers
Many customers are understandably still nervous about returning to restaurants, even for pickup, so you may want to weave in some incentives to attract old and new customers alike. After all, every customer loves a good deal on their meal! Some fun incentives you could run around reopening time, and throughout your first few months back in business, include:
- Seasonal discounts
- Discounts for regular customers
- Gift cards or online specials
4. Boost Marketing While Focusing on Controlling Budget Costs
The final piece of the puzzle is letting your customers know that you’re booted back up and are open for business! To make sure your message gets out, now may be the time to boost your marketing efforts and possibly invest a bit more in digital marketing. Running ads on prominent social media sites, for instance, could be a good strategy, since more people than ever are spending time on the internet and browsing food options from home. However, the trick here is to market effectively so you don’t blow your entire budget on the efforts. Keeping expenses relatively low during this period can help you avoid a financial crunch later on if the reopening doesn’t rake in quite the amount of cash you had foreseen.
Reopening your restaurant after potentially months of COVID shutdown can be scary for a few different reasons. In the end, it’s all about keeping your customers and employees safe from disease while making sure your restaurant is still providing its quality services and remaining financially viable. Though it seems like a tall order, given enough time and creative planning, it can be done!