Every day eaters, wait staff, chefs, managers and owners feel the changes brought about by technology. From diners hunting down their next meal on a smartphone app to chefs ordering their ingredients online, the way business is done in cafés, restaurants, clubs and pubs has evolved since the pandemic began.
1. Use digital apps and experiences to attract customers
Is your restaurant’s phone ringing less nowadays? 81% of millennials aged 22 – 37 indicated they feel anxious during phone calls and as a result tend to avoid them. It’s no surprise to hear they rely heavily on the digital world for just about everything. To thrive as a foodservice operator in this digitised environment, you need to maintain a well-branded, easy-to-use website with direct avenues to booking a table for dining-in or info around accessing your takeaway/delivery offering. You also need to think about customer acquisition channels and how you can champion your brand across social media, Google, email and local media.
Tip: tap into apps like Eat Club to help incentivise potential customers with discounts to eat at your venue
2. Work on your reviews
“Not just good but EXCELLENT in capitals. Great coffee and the usual menu is outstanding – GF and vegan options abound.” Do you think this review from Yelp would help draw in more business? Absolutely. You need to be doing your best to capture reviews from customers. Both organically and perhaps it’s even worth offering a 5% discount for an honest review on Facebook, Yelp or Google after the diner has finished their meal. That 5% may generate future reservations and is the type of proactive thinking that supports business growth.
3. Make paying easy for the customer
In a socially distant world you need to offer customers contactless payments. It’s a way to look out for your staff and customers, but also to reduce chances of community transmission. Even after we get out of COVID (soon please), it’s just generally a better vibe if your customers can pay quickly and get on with the rest of their day without needing to queue at the register.
Tip: check out ME&U for contactless payments
4. Digitise your back-of-house
When it comes to the kitchen and back-of-house, digital technology is also making it easier for chefs to restock the restaurant. Online ordering platform myBidfood allows chefs to order in the time it takes to make a coffee. There’s a few value-add features that allow chefs to plan menus, upload recipes and work out profit margins per plate based on labour costs, food costs and the end sale price. Standout chefs know how to maximise their creativity and all while saving time on mundane tasks like ordering more product for the kitchen. Oh yeah and it comes in app format too! You be the judge, learn more about myBidfood here.
Written by Sam Colclough
eCommerce Marketing Strategist for Bidfood Australia
17 August 2020