Inside the Restaurant World: Staying Competitive in the New Normal

restaurants during pandemic

Restaurant business owners are constantly on the edge of their seats, trying to keep their business afloat during the crisis. Even with the continuous rolling out of vaccines, many people still prefer preparing their own meals and die inside their houses. As for those that are willing to go out and eat, their preferences changed. For now, their health and safety remain their top priorities.

It can be tricky running a restaurant nowadays. Good food and great service alone are not enough to stay competitive. Now that we live under the new normal, every restaurant owner needs a few more things to keep the business competitive.

The following are what some restaurateurs adapted to boost their restaurant’s chances of success during the pandemic.

Leave Evidence of Disinfectant

One’s definition of clean changed after the pandemic hit the globe. It is no longer enough that customers find the area looking clean and enticing to eat. These days, consumers want to be able to eat without worrying about

Customers want to see your staff doing their best to keep heavily trafficked areas regularly disinfected. Train your staff to wipe down chairs and tables after every customer. Ensure they are using the right personal protective equipment (PPE) and cleaning products.

Limit the use of shared objects and devices. As much as possible, invest in easy to clean and disinfect surfaces, tools, and equipment. This can mean investing in new countertops, dispensers, or even commercial-grade sinks for your restaurant.

Embrace Contactless Payment

Some businesses prefer receiving cash payments. But due to the pandemic, consumers turned to cashless forms of payment to reduce their contact with others. This is the perfect time to embrace contactless payment if you want your business to thrive during a crisis.

With contactless payments, your guests can pay for their food and drinks without worries. All you have to do is determine a few other alternative payment options. Here are some examples you can consider.

  • Debit cards
  • Credit cards
  • Smart cards
  • EMV cards
  • Loyalty cards
  • Mobile wallet apps
  • POS terminals
  • Website ordering

Embrace Curbside Pickup Services

Restaurants with modest operations have the option to accept orders and curbside pickups. For as long as you have a working website set up that enables your patrons to order and pay for their orders online, they can pick up their orders on their way. The same goes if you accept phone orders.

Restaurants are leveraging curbside pickup due to its many perks. For one, this allows consumers to go on about their day while still providing them with your goods. You get to limit the number of customers inside the restaurant while retaining loyal clients who would rather take their orders to-go.

When using a curbside pickup to your advantage, here are some tips worth remembering.

  • Don’t forget about your sanitation practices.
  • Choose the kind of technology that you and your customers will find easy to navigate.
  • Provide clear instructions so that customers will know what to expect.
  • Ensure your employees are limiting contact while using protective clothing.
  • Increase workplace safety and ensure your staff and customers are safe, especially in areas where there is now extra traffic.
  • Market your new curbside pickup services.
  • Personalize your curbside pickup services.

Diversify Business Concepts

Gone are the days when one can go to restaurants and dine without wondering if taking their masks off is a good idea or not. These days, even the distance of the chairs and tables matter to customers.

Don’t be afraid to diversify your concepts. This is the perfect opportunity to bring your creativity to the table. Consider everything that can help you win more customers now. Businesses that can show their boldness and resilience are thriving. There are lots of opportunities to boost your operations while still adhering to health and safety rules. If you have the budget, make the right investments.

It also pays to check what your local competitors are doing during the pandemic. This will give you clues as to what other improvements you can make in your own restaurant. Keep an open eye but never obsess on your competition.

It is true that in the restaurant world, some things never grow old. But during these trying times, you may need to consider desperate measures to keep up. There is no reason to allow your business to crumble just because you are so resistant to change.

While some things should definitely remain, don’t forget about the new priorities and demands of your customers. They are not simply craving great food and superlative customer service. They also want assurance that you are doing what you can to keep them safe while they enjoy your services.

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