Set Your Table for Summer Success
Set Your Table for Summer Success
Summertime is nearly upon us, and with that usually comes an uptick in the popularity of restaurants. Many factors contribute to this increase in traffic, from the nice weather and relaxed vibe to vacations and more free time. How can you make sure your restaurant is set for success? Let’s dive in together.
If you haven’t done so already, the most obvious thing you need to do to prep for the summer surge is make sure you’re properly staffed. Summertime sees a swath of students heading on summer break and desperately seeking employment. We found a stat reported on PYMNTS.com that nearly 2 million teens were employed by restaurants in 2018, the same level as we saw before the recession of 2007. Tap into this resource by choosing high-quality candidates to supplement any full-time staffers who may be heading home for the season. You want to be equipped with a well-trained, highly engaged and driven group of employees who are willing to put in the extra elbow grease, time, and energy it takes to work at a successful restaurant in the summer months.
Get Your Menu Set
The hottest months of the year see a dramatic decrease in the consumption of those heavy fall and winter dishes like soup and pasta. Instead, customers favor things on the lighter side: unique salads, fresh fish, local fruits and veggies, and anything from the grill. Guests also love a good summer-themed cocktail. Create a new set of summertime snacks, entrees, desserts and drinks to serve on a seasonally inspired menu. The word that should embody your new dishes: Refreshing. Ensure you get the word out too, by updating your website and social media posts.
Step Up Your Tech
With an increase in traffic comes the need for efficiency, which includes your payment systems. Table-based payment systems are all over the place in restaurants today, and they serve to streamline the payment process, increase table turn rates, and subsequently bring a boost to your bottom line. Allowing a customer to pay their bill directly on a tablet from their seat increases the security of their payments as well, since your staff won’t have to juggle multiple cards, carrying them across the floor while being pulled in multiple directions from other customers and coworkers. And as Foodnewsfeed.com points out, “Increased security means less chargebacks, eliminating the stress of the liability burden placed on merchants.”
Outstanding Outdoor Space
Got a patio? Great. Make sure it’s set for the surge of folks who prefer to eat outside during the summer. You’ll need space heaters to mitigate the inevitable cool evening, umbrellas to combat those summer storms, and fire is preferable to help stave away those pesky summer gnats and mosquitos. Don’t have an outdoor space? No problem! You can still bring the outdoors in with fresh flowers and potted herbs that make customers feel as though they’re in a garden oasis.
Many employers put a “Summer Friday” policy into effect between Memorial and Labor Days, allowing full-time staff to leave early on Fridays to get a head start on weekend plans. Capitalize on an earlier-than-usual Happy Hour crowd by hosting Summer Friday Happy Hours, or other specials that cater to the corporate workforce. There are also many great holidays and occasions to celebrate during the summer months (the first being the unofficial kickoff to the season, Memorial Day)—make sure you come up with some exciting deals, menu items, events, or entertainment to make the most of these festive times. And again, ensure you get the word out on social media and your website. Frequent advertising is the best way to ensure increase foot traffic to your restaurant.
Make certain that swarms of happy, hot, hungry customers will be streaming through your doors this summer by following our tips. To be as prepared as possible, think about having a bit of extra cash-on-hand with a line of credit from ARF Financial. You can pull funds as needed and only pay interest on the money your take, plus you get 24-hour access to 5 separate drafts over a 6-month period. You can even request funds online. Stop by today and learn how a line of credit can help make your restaurant the hottest place in town this summer.