If you’re the owner of a family restaurant, you may be interested in making some changes that will make your business more welcoming to customers. After all, return customers are your business’s lifeblood. Here are four tips to help you get started.
Add some greenery to the restaurant, such as potted plants or a small herb garden
If you’re looking to add a bit of greenery to your restaurant, there are plenty of options available. If your restaurant has a yard, you could add potted plants along the walkway or path leading to the entrance. If you have more space, you could create a small herb garden near the door. This way, customers can see that the herbs and produce you pick are fresh. The sight of nature also helps keep customers patient while waiting for their food.
If you have larger outdoor areas, you could plant a few large trees for added shade and privacy. You can decorate trees with lamps and fairy lights for a charming, homey feel. Just make sure to groom and trim the trees and shrubs whenever they start to look overgrown. Be sure to factor in the maintenance costs associated with them — the biggest cost will be obtaining them, especially if you will have a large tree replanted. You will have to add a bit more to your overhead for water, fertilizer, and gardening, too, but it’ll be worth it. After all, customers love dining outside!
Make the Atmosphere Inside the Restaurant Comfortable
Creating a comfortable atmosphere inside a restaurant is essential for attracting and retaining customers. There are several ways to achieve this, but one of the most important is to carefully select the music that is played. The music should fit the overall ambiance and theme of the restaurant, and it should be changed regularly to keep customers from becoming bored. A place quickly gets old if you hear the same songs on each visit. In addition, the decor and layout of the restaurant should be inviting and welcoming. What this looks like differs for each aesthetic, but generally, you want it to feel homey as a family restaurant. If you serve mostly Italian cuisine, look for decor that is reminiscent of the Italian countryside, such as olive trees, brown brick walls, and earth-tone-colored, old-world furniture. The staff should be friendly, approachable, and helpful. By creating an atmosphere that is comfortable and inviting, you can increase the chance of customers coming back.
Offer special discounts or promotions for loyal customers
This is one of the best strategies you can use to provide tangible incentives to loyal customers. Depending on how big your establishment is and how often you interact with your customers, you can try various ways of giving these to customers. As a small establishment, you can give out discounts to customers or comp them for dishes, and tell them it’s because you consider them friends. If you’re worried about spending too much, you can manually keep track of how often someone visits without telling them about it. This way, you’ll surprise them, and you’ll encourage them to keep coming back. Bigger establishments with more customers may require you to put a system in place so that you won’t have a hard time keeping track. This also eliminates the risk of other customers growing jealous and demanding the same discounts and freebies.
Make sure the menu is updated regularly with new and seasonal items
A restaurant’s menu is more than just a list of dishes — it’s a reflection of the establishment’s overall philosophy and style. As such, it’s important to make sure that the menu is updated regularly with new and seasonal items. This not only keeps the offerings fresh and exciting for customers, but it also allows the restaurant to take advantage of seasonal ingredients. Many amazing dishes use seasonal ingredients. Many customers probably do not have a chance to cook these at home, and now is the chance to let them taste these dishes. In addition, regular updates to the menu can help to increase sales by offering specials and allowing waiters to upsell. Make sure that your waiters offer the specials and seasonal dishes whenever they hand out menus. Ultimately, a well-designed menu is an essential part of any successful restaurant. After all, you are managing a restaurant, and your most important product is food. If you serve good food, customers will keep coming back — everything else is just a bonus!
A comfortable atmosphere, an updated menu with seasonal items and specials, and promotions will help make your restaurant successful. By following the tips in this article, you can create an inviting space that will keep customers coming back for more.