Professionals learn about fresh development prospects and concepts as the restaurant sector develops. Experts have started utilizing restaurant technology in recent years to increase revenues and expand their businesses.
It’s crucial to keep in mind that there are many more ways to expand in the food service sector in addition to utilizing cutting-edge restaurant technology. It often comes down to following accepted procedures.
You’re likely looking for strategies to raise the restaurant’s profit margin if you’re looking for growth chances. If so, keep reading to find out more.
Opportunities Within the Restaurant Industry
For your restaurant to continue growing over the long run, you must increase ROI. Keep in mind that the ROI definition relates to the difference between the capital you invest in your company and the revenue it brings in. Therefore, the better the ROI, to put it simply.
Opportunities for growth frequently lead to increases in traffic and sales. Every business owner, however, needs to be aware that different restaurant marketing methods can have varying effects on enterprises. It’s crucial to know which ones will work for your restaurant.
There are several strategies to include in your restaurant business plan, ranging from innovative restaurant marketing concepts to cutting-edge food technology. Look no further if you’re looking for expansion prospects to boost restaurant sales. Here are seven of the best ways to increase your restaurant’s revenues.
1. Daily Menus For Less Food Waste
One of the most significant issues that the restaurant industry is facing is a surge in food waste. As inflation continues to be an economic issue, many restaurants opt for bulk orders. Though it might seem like a logical solution, it boasts many problems.
Daily menus are an innovative and modern approach to reducing food spoilage and shrinkage. Instead of having standard menu types, the restaurant has the freedom to change it up on a daily basis. This approach will allow you to maximize your inventory and get the most out of a sustainable restaurant budget.
Another way to dodge the risk of creating waste is to order only what your restaurant will need. Improve your inventory management techniques with an app like BlueCart to schedule the proper amount of stock at the right times.
2. Use Technology For Innovation
Several of the greatest growth opportunities in the food industry circle back to technological advancements. Tools and resources allow the restaurant manager to streamline restaurant operations and increase restaurant sales.
Some of the most popular ways to boost restaurant profits are by onboarding the following tech solutions:
- An all-inclusive POS system
- Self-ordering kiosks
- Tableside payment devices
- Options for contactless payments
- Restaurant inventory management app
- Bar inventory app
- Delivery and curbside pick-up
3. Provide Online Ordering Services
Off-premise business is one of the best growth opportunities for restaurants. There is much room to increase revenue while simultaneously cutting restaurant expenses.
Online ordering apps allow customers to make purchases in the comfort of their own homes. Consequently, there are three major reasons why this ordering style is so profitable:
- Customer data reports show that people spend more money per order when purchasing it online vs. at a brick-and-mortar restaurant.
- There are app integrations and features that allow restaurants to upsell orders. For example, there might be last-minute menu suggestions on the checkout page.
- A restaurant can only seat so many people. By offering delivery service, you’re expanding your reach to an entire geographic area.
4. Partner With Local Businesses
Cross collaboration is a technique to instantly gain exposure. Another great benefit of partnerships is that they benefit both parties. Browse local businesses or nonprofits and find a few you’d like to support. Conduct thoughtful outreach and set up a plan to cross-promote each business.
If a local business or charity collaborates with your restaurant, a partnership might look like this: you’ll donate a payment or proceeds from an event in exchange for promotional campaigns. Such promotions could be physical ads on their property, features throughout their email marketing strategy, or the chance to serve food at an event.
5. Reward Loyal Customers
One of the most lucrative growth opportunities in the restaurant space is rewarding your most loyal customers. If you don’t already have a restaurant loyalty program set up, we highly encourage it. Loyalty programs establish a cycle where customers keep coming back. As they make new purchases, they’ll keep gaining more perks. It’s an ongoing tactic that constantly helps to boost restaurant profits.
Be sure to utilize the restaurant POS platform to keep track of customer rewards. It’ll make relevant tasks much simpler for wait staff and guarantee accurate rewards for customers.
6. Offer First-Time Restaurant Promotions
Consumer data reports show us that people frequent eateries that they know they love. It’s understandable–why fix something that isn’t broken? With this in mind, it can be hard to incentivize first-time visitors. Promote coupons in flyers, online, and in email newsletters. Display that a discount will be added to the bill if you give one of the waiters a coupon code.
Once customers visit your restaurant, it’ll be much easier getting them to come back. The eatery will already be familiar and in mind when they think of a place to visit again. Exposure will also help with growing an online presence.
7. Extend Hours Of Operation
If your restaurant is a quick service restaurant, you may already offer 24/7 food delivery. If not, it still might be something to consider.
It can be challenging to find a way to differentiate a business from competitors. However, extending the hours of operation is a simple yet effective way to do so. Unless you operate in a major city like New York or Los Angeles, there probably aren’t too many eateries open 24/7.
20 Restaurant Industry Opportunities
As we enter a new decade, there is still a large amount of unmet demand for restaurants, according to recent data from the National Restaurant Association. Operators are interested in leveraging all of the resources at their disposal to stay top-of-mind with a changing consumer base as the sector has grown for 11 years.
The 2020 State of the Restaurant Industry Report from the National Restaurant Association focuses on current trends and the data that support them. Here are 20 categories with potential for growth in 2020 and beyond based on their results.
Source local ingredients. Seven in 10 restaurant operators say consumers are more interested in locally sourced menu items than they were two years ago.
Add healthy options. Sixty-five percent of adults say they order more healthful options at restaurants than they did two years ago, and 85% of operators say they’ve noticed a shift in the amount of attention diners are paying to these options.
Think sustainably — and tell people! Plenty of operators engage in sustainable practices, fewer share this story. Three in four restaurant operators say consumers are more interested in environmentally sustainable menu items than they were two years ago, and over half of diners say they’re more likely to visit a restaurant that features them.
Hop on the plant-based trend. In a recent survey, more than 600 chefs ranked plant-based proteins high in menu and protein categories, indicating sustained interest from consumers and businesses. Mushrooms ranked especially high this year, too, whether blended into burgers or as stand-alone ingredients.
There’s opportunity in alcoholic beverages … Twenty-two percent of fast-casual operators believe alcoholic beverages will become more popular within their segment in 2020. Then there’s delivery potential: 56% of adults — including eight in 10 millennials (age 24-39) say they would be likely to order alcoholic beverages if they were offered as part of a food delivery order from a restaurant. (The ability to do this varies by jurisdiction.)
… but plenty of interest in creative nonalcoholic and low alcohol-by-volume options, too. There’s much greater diversification and availability of nonalcoholic beverages, and a lot more research and development going into the category.
Offer more technology. Consumers are asking for it, and the majority want technology that reduces transaction friction and increases convenience — not the kind of tech that replaces humans.
Don’t get distracted by the flashy new tech options. Fewer than a quarter of consumers say that tech like self-driving cars and delivery drones, or food-preparing robots are a good idea.
Don’t overlook tech basics. Even with all the new technology on offer, the majority of consumers use it for the basics: checking the menu, location, hours, and reviews. Keep these updated across channels.
Invest in off-premises. A majority of operators across industry segments see off-premises options — drive-thru, takeout, curb-side pickup and delivery — as the best opportunity for future growth, including 80% of quick-service and fast-casual operators. Still, only about half of operators say they plan to devote more resources to expanding this side of their business in the next year.
Consider delivery. Overall, roughly half of restaurant operators say their restaurant offers delivery. Fast-casual operators were the most likely to say they offer a delivery option.
Offer easy additions to home-prepared meals. Three in four adults say they are more likely to stay at home and watch on-demand television and videos than they were two years ago. While this can cut down on foot traffic at restaurants, it’s also an opportunity to expand consumers’ at-home options. Fifty-eight percent of adults (including 69% of those ages 18-23) say they’re open to supplementing home-cooked meals with restaurant dishes.
Highlight value. A good deal never goes out of style, and consumers and operators agree that everyone appreciates value. Catch a customer’s attention: roughly 8 in 10 restaurant operators say consumers are more value-conscious than they were two years ago.
Engage your customers, they want to hear from you. Nearly half of restaurant operators say their customers’ loyalty is more difficult to maintain than it was two years ago, but consumers want to stay involved. More than eight in 10 say they are more likely to visit a restaurant that offers a customer loyalty and reward program. And keep talking to them! A strong majority of adults, including 91% of millennials (ages 24-39) say they’d try to take advantage of specials communicated via smartphone app.
Try something unexpected. The time is right for experimentation and creativity. Three in four adults say they would likely pay attention to variable pricing — that is, real-time price adjustments for specific times of the day or days of the week. Busy times mean higher pricing; prices drop during slower periods. Two-thirds of adults say they would be likely to take advantage of a house account, pre-paying a certain amount to receive a bonus amount added to their account.
Get involved. Nine in 10 restaurant operators make charitable donations in their communities. Consumers notice – especially the younger ones. Half of consumers say they are likely to make a restaurant choice based on how much a restaurant supports charitable activities and the local community. Among Gen Z adults (ages 18-23), this soars to 70%.
Think differently across dayparts. Changing times lead to changing habits. Consumers want easy breakfast food and beverage options. Half of employed adults bring their lunch to work less frequently. Over half go out for an afternoon snack or beverage more frequently. And 61% of employed adults say they are more likely to pick up take-out food for dinner on the way home from work than they were two years ago.
Engage an emerging workforce … Employee turnover in hospitality is high, the highest level since 2007. Still, people view restaurant jobs favorably — 93% of all adults agree that the restaurant industry is a good place to get a first job and learn fundamental working skills. Roughly one in four restaurant job openings in 2019 were filled by people for whom it was the first regular job they have ever had, and the number of teenagers working in restaurants is gradually trending higher.
… and recognize the opportunity for older adults. Older adults will represent a much larger proportion of the overall U.S. labor force in the years ahead, while the number of teens available for work will continue to shrink. The number of adults aged 65 and older in the labor force is expected to increase by 6.1 million by 2028.
Be clear when communicating employee initiatives. Given the high turnover in the industry, it’s always important for the employer to visibly communicate how they’re investing in employee development and training. It’s much easier to retain an existing employee than find a new one.
Operating a restaurant isn’t cheap, so keeping up with new growth opportunities to boost profits is essential. Find ways to increase restaurant profits without exceeding your budget. By doing so, you’ll be able to scale your business in record time.