How to Increase Restaurant Sales Without Advertising

19 May, 2016 / Comments: Comments Off on How to Increase Restaurant Sales Without Advertising / By

Driving your food and beverage sales doesn’t necessarily require you to have a big-time marketing budget. In fact, you can boost your restaurant sales without any advertising at all. There are countless ways to promote your restaurant and increase your sales without pouring money into a marketing budget. Here are just a few effective and cost-efficient ways to do so.

 

Hold Business Socials at Your Restaurant 

If you find the right company to partner with, business socials are an excellent opportunity to leverage your resources in order to promote your restaurant and target the audience you want. Make your restaurant the host of socials in which the food is the highlight of the event. It’s also a great idea to arrange for photos in which your meals are displayed in the background.

 

Offer Samples          

If the quality of your dishes is what makes your restaurant stand out, then you should do everything in your power to get it into the mouths of future customers. Samples are a great way to promote your restaurant and build its recognition. It is also much more cost-effective and efficient than advertising. Look into any public events in your area that may draw your audience in, as this is an opportunity to offer samplings of your dishes. Choose your best 2 or 3 items that can easily be transported. Choose your best employees to be representatives of your restaurant in order to greet potential customers.

 

Boost Your Mobile Image

In this day and age, one of the most important customer demographic is millennials, which are those people born after 1985. Millennials were born during the mobile phone arm race and more than 50 percent of them make purchasing decisions based on information they find on their phone. Due to this, you should focus on fostering a mobile presence to boost your sales.

 

Build a Relationship with Your Employees

Have regular meetings and ensure your employees know about all of your strategies. Giving your employees the in on your plans for boosting sales will allow them to be more apt to offer their best performance. Some of your more seasoned employees will be able to tell when your sales are lacking, while others won’t. Inform your employee team of what your bottom line is looking like. You may even want to consider holding a meeting before each shift. Keep in mind that how well your staff performs reflects on the perception of your restaurant. An amazing staff can make your restaurant amazing, while a poor staff can pull your restaurant the other way.

 

Leverage Your Restaurants Uniqueness

You must not only compete with fast food chains, but also family restaurants. One way to set your restaurant out from the crowd is to think about what exactly makes your restaurant unique and special compared to everyone else and then leverage that. Whether you make your own special BBQ sauce or have a fun tradition when it comes to celebrating birthdays, make your customers remember what makes your restaurant unique compared to others.

 

Build Your Repeat Customer Base

One study found that if you can up your number of repeat customers by just 5 percent it will increase your profits by between 25 and 125 percent. The best way to do this is to train your employees to sniff out first-time customers and casually ask them how they found your restaurant. Ensure that your service is impeccable when it comes to first-timers. Keep in mind that you only have one attempt to make a good impression. Make sure that your employees greet customers with a smile and double check that their order is right. If you are taking a delivery order than ensure that you check the bag before the driver leaves to ensure it is correct. Lastly, a great way to turn a first-timer into a repeat customer is to offer a discount coupon on their second order.

 

William Mahnic
William Mahnic is a Finance Professor at Case Western University and has spent more than 20 years in the finance industry before becoming a professor. Mahnic has appeared as a commentator on both TV and radio talk shows including NPR, Crain's Cleveland Business, WKYC 3 and The Washington Post. He has been interviewed in BusinessWeek, Wall Street Journal and The Los Angeles Times.

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