Do you want to increase customers’ patronage to your restaurant and bar? If YES, here are 20 strategies to boost your restaurant sales fast without advertising.
The restaurant business is a very competitive one. As a matter of fact, any business operating in the food and beverage industry is competitive. Food is something no human being can do without and smart investors know this which is why they wouldn’t hesitate to invest in any business that has to do with selling food, especially the restaurant business.
Due to the influx of entrepreneurs into this industry, it might be really challenging to stay ahead of the competition and continue to increase sales when you are running a restaurant business. However, these few tips would help you increase sales in your restaurant.
20 Strategies to Boost Restaurant Sales Without Advertising
1. Impress Their Taste Buds: It goes without saying that the best way to get your clients coming back for more is to ensure that you give them tasty, delicious meals that their taste buds cannot resist. If your meals are not appealing to your target audience, then no amount of sales or marketing tactics would get them to come back after the first time.
2. Keep it Clean: People take hygiene very seriously when they choose to eat out. It is not just the cooking utensils and the cutleries that should be kept clean, the staff and the entire surroundings of the restaurant must be kept clean in and out.
3. Choose Your Demographics and Appeal to Them
A restaurant is sometimes more than a place go to eat; it can also be a place to unwind, relax and hold small meetings. It helps to identify the specific demographics that you want your business to cater to, and set up your restaurant and services to appeal to them. For instance, if you want to attract the rich or middle class to your restaurant, you have to put in some extra efforts to ensure that everything in your restaurant from the furniture to the menu and the quality of service reeks of class.
4. Add Online Selling to Your Model
Nowadays, people would rather order for food online and have it delivered to their homes or offices than drive several miles through heavy traffic to enjoy a meal. You don’t have to close down your brick-and-mortar restaurant but you can add online selling to your services so that those who prefer home delivery can have that. This way, you wouldn’t be cutting out a very important segment of your market.
5. Start a Loyalty Program: Loyalty programs are very effective for keeping your customers committed to your business. Many people would rather spend their money in a place where they already have points accumulating so that they can get the promised rewards. However, for this to work, you have to make the gifts and rewards appealing enough.
6. Offer Combo Deals: Combo deals would look cheaper to your customers and make you more money. A person who planned to spend just $10 in one visit might end up spending up to $20 or more for a combo deal because it appears cheaper. At the end of the day, people just want more value for their money.
7. Offer Different Sizes: Some people are heavy eaters while some are light eaters. If you can cater to the needs of the light eaters (especially children) by allowing them to pay less for smaller plates, they will feel like they got better value for their money and would want to stay committed to you.
8. Host Events: Hosting events at your restaurant brings you a lot of awareness and subsequently, customers. You can host live music events, food or wine tasting, cooking classes and other fun events that would get people visiting your restaurant not just for food but for the opportunity to relax and socialize without having to pay extra fees.
9. Introduce Group Discounts: If you want your clients to make your restaurant their favorite spot for group parties, birthdays, and other mini-events, you should introduce group discounts so that the more people who get to eat, the less money they would have to pay.
10. List Your Services on YELP: YELP is the online version of the yellow pages and millions of people visit YELP to get reviews and ideas on which businesses to patronize, and which ones to stay away from. You can increase visibility and profit for your business if you are able to get it listed on YELP.
11. Be Visible on Search Engines: It is not uncommon for people to search for nearby restaurants using search engines. A tourist or visitor to a city who has absolutely no idea of where to eat great food might be able to find your business and patronize you if you have a search-engine friendly website.
12. Distribute Flyers: Although innovative advertising technologies seem to have pushed basic techniques like flyer distribution to the back burner, but it is still a very effective way to get local clients to visit your restaurant. Come up with an eye-popping, hardly-resistible deal/discount, have it printed on your flyers, distribute them locally and watch them turn up in impressive numbers.
13. Use Geo-Targeted Ads: If you don’t find distribution of flyers appealing or convenient, you can use geo-targeted ads, which are like electronic flyers that people around your locality or that belong to any of the demographics that you are targeting, can easily see on social media or any other web platforms that they visit.
14. Build a Relationship With Your Clients: Don’t let your relationship with your customers end with grabbing some meals and walking out of your doors; try to develop a relationship with your clients, and make them feel special by keeping in touch with them via email newsletters and mobile messages. You can send them holiday shout outs, birthday greetings, and random messages to keep your restaurant on their minds, and make them feel special.
15. Make Your Staff Attractive: A uniform will help but that is not all; you have to train your staff to be friendly, courteous and put on a smiling face at all times. Seeing happy and friendly people around helps your customers relax better and would make them want to always come around.
16. Reach Out to Food Bloggers: Another effective strategy that restaurants are using these days is to get food bloggers with a huge online following to visit your restaurant, and review your services on their blogs. This can help to draw a lot of (hopefully positive) attention to your blog.
17. Offer Coupons: Coupons are also very effective for rewarding loyal customers, and keeping them running back. Surprising your email subscribers with coupon codes is one effective way to handle this.
18. Make Reservation Easy: If customers have to make reservations to dine at your restaurant, you should make it very easy for them to make reservations. Online reservation tools like Open Table are especially very helpful. You can use this, or find any other reservation tools that would make it easy for your customers to make reservations.
19. Review your Menu: There is no point keeping dishes that people are not ordering on your menu or making your food too expensive. You should review your menu, or have an expert do it for you so that both your menu and the prices attached would be attractive to your customers.
20. Cater to Dietary Needs: Nowadays, everyone seems to be on one type of diet or the other -The Ketogenic diet, Mediterranean diet, Low-Carb, Low Calorie and so on. You can make a lot of sales and profit if you can find a way to make sure that your restaurant caters to the dietary needs of people.