Strategies for Boosting Restaurant Profits in 2016

With constant improvements in technology, ever expanding competition, and changing tastes, staying on top in the restaurant industry means consistently refining your process and searching out ways to improve profits and boost your bottom line. If you’re in search of ways to augment your restaurant sales, consider incorporating these tips into your daily processes and watch your business and customers reap the multitude of benefits.

Offer Online Ordering

According to recent studies, 69 percent of consumers have ordered food online with their smartphone; if you don’t have a mobile-friendly website that makes this task easy, you might be losing out on key customers. Online ordering allows for a measure of convenience that today’s consumers have come to expect, and it can make the ordering and preparation more efficient on your end. With data entry instead of phone ordering, you’ll find fewer mistakes, happier customers, and foster a sense of a loyalty. When you do launch online ordering, make sure you allow for modifications to your items (as you would if a customer was ordering in person), provide delivery or pickup services, and offer estimated times of delivery or food readiness for pickup. You don’t necessarily need to provide your own delivery service; utilize options like GrubHub (a popular delivery app) and make it easy for hungry customers to gain access to your food. Some studies have found that ticket amounts are, on average, 10 to 30 percent higher with online orders.

Harness Customer Loyalty

There’s few things as integral to restaurant success as ensuring customer loyalty. One Harvard study found that if you’re able to increase your repeat customers by a mere 5 percent, you’ll see a profit increase of 25 to 125 percent. How can you improve this loyalty? Offer reward cards that see customers securing discounts each time they return, emphasize excellent customer service, and make sure you cut down on kitchen mistakes and offer excellent food each and every time.

Refine Your Scheduling Process

While labor costs don’t necessarily boost your restaurant sales, the wait staff you have are an integral part of securing loyal patrons, so you’d be remiss to ignore this important facet of the restaurant industry. Reducing costs can be a tough task, but one area that can always use refining is labor expenditures. If you’re looking to improve communication with your employees and work out kinks in your scheduling process, consider using an app like HomeBase. This app will help you keep track of hours, payroll, and indicate when you might be losing money thanks to less-than-satisfactory labor management and unnecessary scheduled hours.

Offer Drink Specials


There’s also something to be said about expanding your alcohol offerings. If your establishment currently only serves beer and wine, or you chose to forgo a liquor license altogether, you could be missing out on a bevy of profits. Many restaurants cite alcohol sales as a significant portion of their profits, and many patrons expect to be able to order their favorite alcoholic beverages when they head out for a dining experience. If you are considering getting your liquor license, or are interested in buying a license that allows you to serve a full range of liquors and spirits, you may find it difficult to secure depending on competition in your area. Instead of attempting to approach private sellers who may try to upsell you, use a brokerage service like License Locators, Inc. to find a list of available alcohol permits in your area.

Use Social Media to Your Advantage

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If you’re not utilizing the multitude of social media channels available at the click of a button, you’re doing your business a great disservice. Make profiles on the major players, including Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. If you’re looking to appeal to Millennials and Generation Z-ers, consider starting a Snapchat account that can provide sneak peeks into the kitchen and make potential customers feel more connected to your business.

Keeping your restaurant thriving means remaining flexible and adapting to current trends. Incorporate these strategies into your business plan this year and improve profits in no time.

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