Opening a new business can be very exciting for a small restaurant owner. It’s like a dream come true for many people. The days leading up to the opening of your new restaurant can be very challenging and for good reason; There are so many crucial decisions to make. From curating the menu to selecting the furniture of your setup, the hiring of chefs to marketing. All this can be very daunting and time-consuming.
But once it’s all done, you open the gates for your customers. It’s exciting and fun but according to a recent study, only 17% of new restaurants survive. The reasons for that are multifaceted and in this article, we are going to discuss 5 mistakes to avoid as a small restaurant owner.
Mistake 1: Overspending
Making good use of the available capital is imperative. The last thing you want is to run out of cash before the furnishing is done. Costs can rise unexpectedly and things can be hard to manage. It’s always a good idea to do your research and add a buffer for every cost head.
Mistake 2: A Complicated Menu
When do people come to the restaurants? When they are hungry! They come to feed their hunger and the last thing they want is a complicated and confusing menu that makes them all cranky. Yes, you want to provide variety to satisfy various taste buds but it has to be presented on the menu in a very user-friendly way. However, what is more important is not the variety but the consistency of the food that you are offering because this ensures that people keep coming back. Lastly, the larger and fancier the menu, your customer will consume more time deciding what to order which will lead to less table turnover and hence fewer profits for you!
One nice trick to make your menu simpler is to include a description under every dish. According to one study carried out by the researchers at the University of Illinois, adding such description can increase sales by up to 27%!
Mistake 3: Forgetting About Licenses
All businesses require a license to operate. And depending on which state you are in, you would require a restaurant license to avoid running into any sort of trouble. The path of obtaining a license is a strenuous and laborious task but it’s absolutely necessary that you obtain one. It ensures that you continue to operate without interruption.
Mistake 4: Not Training Your Staff
The restaurant industry primarily is in the service sector of the economy. You are not just selling food but an experience. One crucial aspect of this service is your staff. They are the representatives of your restaurant. It does not matter how good your food is or how fancy the interior is but what really matters is the experience that your customers enjoy. This is where your staff comes to play. They are the ones interacting with the customers. They are the main link between the customers and the kitchen staff. The way they handle the customers will play a huge role in the retention rate. They should be polite, caring and considerate towards customers. And these soft skills should be taught by every restaurant owner out there.
Mistake 5: Not Paying Attention To A Changing Business Climate
The one thing true about success is that it demands adaptability. The world around us is changing every day. If you want to stay at your A-game, you need to adapt and you adapt by being able to learn new things quickly. The restaurant industry is no different than our personal lives. You need to keep looking out for trends that improve the overall dining experience.
And one important fact of our age is that millennials are dictating the culture of the restaurant industry. The millennial generation is expected to become the largest U.S. demographic in 2020, according to U.S. Census Bureau. They are tech-savvy and don’t shy away from embracing new things and hence, restaurants should embrace these trends too.
There’s a lot of technology available today for restaurants to take advantage of. Innowi, a pioneer in an all in one powerful mPOS solution, for example, has a revolutionary mPOS device by the name of Model M. This device is a NexGen all-in-one device allowing everything from Mobile Point of Sale (POS) to Mobile Computing. It can run any Android or Windows software apps. According to a research study, 58% of diners prefer mobile payments when they are made available.
Every restaurant should adopt these technologies in 2020 as this not only improves the dining experience but also improves their bottom line!