All of this year and for over thirty years clients have been asking the same question: “What do I need to do in order to increase my sales?”
And most of my time is spent over these years devising ways to assist operators to increase sales. I have found that what worked several years ago may be less effective today. Market conditions change, people’s attitudes evolve, public opinion changes, dietary concerns change and so on. So we continue to develop programs that work. I want to cite some examples of things that have worked over the last few years and then you can best decide for yourself which items you might like to try.
Almost all remodels generate additional sales. The larger the scope of the remodel the larger the increase in sales. Sometimes a name change is appropriate as well as a menu change and even a management change. “Dog” locations have become gold with change. I don’t necessarily advocate a total revision of the facility and the concept, but in today’s day and age where the marketplace is demanding new and exciting, it is a consideration. To see if your place needs some type of improvement/remodel visit the local restaurants that are having success and see how their place looks.
Note: Every remodel/cleanup doesn’t have to cost a fortune. There are many ways to be cost efficient.
Marketing is a program. It includes not only advertising but also public relations, local store guerilla type marketing and in-store merchandising. It is a matter of becoming part of the operating format. The restaurants that seem to do this seem to grow their sales. Most operators are operators. They are not marketers. I have found that if they try some things without fear of failure, they will have some success and continue down the marketing pathway knowing that some things just don’t work and this is ok. The important thing is to get in there and mix it up.
Note: Every marketing program doesn’t have to cost a fortune. It needs to be some percentage of your sales and in the beginning it may be an investment.
People return to restaurants because of the way they have been treated. Is each customer treated like a precious commodity? Evaluate it yourself. Pull back and watch your operation for several days, make notes and see how the guest was treated. I bet it will adjust your management style.
Note: This costs nothing except some time for retraining and refocusing.
Most operators are very hard working. So hard working that they never take the time to get more of a birds-eye view of their restaurant. Drop back for several hours and think about how you might evolve and grow your business. You will come to the conclusion that you could try some things that might grow your business. Be sure to visit other restaurants and make notes of what they are doing and what is working.
I separate the way I look at a restaurant into categories:
- Décor & Environment
- Service & Management
- Food & Beverage
- Marketing & Management
- Follow Up on Last Month’s Article
Does anyone have any marked improvement in their sales via guest check average (Costs Are On the Upswing)? I did hear one story about how it went from $19 to $22 one night at one restaurant. I’m not sure they continued after that.
We would be happy to assist you in generating sales. Please contact us.