The restaurant industry has been a chaotic market in 2020, but for some businesses, they have implemented unique strategies to keep costs low and remain profitable. Much of this success is due to creative marketing, packaging, and outdoor dining. There are endless, research-backed ways to increase your revenue, all it takes is a little creative thinking.

Here are some strategies to increase your restaurant’s profit margin and get more traffic through the door for the new year.


Evaluate Your Menu

In this crazy time, you need to take a good look at your menu. If it includes lists of items, consider tapering the menu down and simplifying it. Ask yourself what your customers want. Comfort food is popular for many successful restaurants, so modifying your menu to include feel good food is a strategy to consider.

Also, is the menu organized and easy to read? Or is everything all over the page? If it is, restructure it so your customers don’t exhaust themselves reading it. They should easily be able to identify the appetizers from the entrees. Your menu should also encourage a purchase in a simple way by a structure that is matched with cost and popularity so the decision is easier to make.

It helps to look back to see what items were most popular, and then highlight those options in a creative way. Offering less with more creativity and flare is a great move, as customers, especially now, want simplicity and food that makes them happy. And that makes them want to come back.

This may mean decreasing the amount of available food and drink options or making offerings in a seasonal menu. Doing so creates artificial scarcity around more popular but costly products. If you offer an online menu, make certain it’s designed to easily maneuver and order. Often, hiring a copywriter can help make your web site a success.


Host Events

One of the most powerful strategies to enable, and one that is used now in many popular restaurants, is to begin offering events. Now, more than ever, customers want to be with family and friends in an outdoor environment. They also want events, like special themed nights paired with food offerings, or music venues and even movie night. The possibilities are endless. Get creative. Ask yourself what the customer wants for fun and comfort.

Hosting events in the current climate is possible, but you have to design the event with distancing in place. Tables should be spread out and there are of course limits in how many guests can sit at one table. Under normal circumstances, events are a great way to bring in new and regular customers, and it’s a sure-fire way to get them back in the door because they love being together outside. Other ideas could be to livestream a cooking class or menu reveal, or even create exclusive products delivered directly to your patrons.

The current climate is actually a great way to reinvent your restaurant business, and with a little creative thought, the ideas are never ending to bring in new revenue.