A restaurant is a good idea if you can build a loyal customer base. The problem that small restaurants have is that they struggle to compete with the big boys.
You might be able to increase your traffic at the beginning, but it will slowly start to fizzle away. That is, unless, you can maintain your customer base for the long-term.
Consumers always like to try new things, so it isn’t going to be easy. However, it is possible if you know the tricks of the trade.
#1: Advertise Via Social Media
It is no secret that consumers use social media to broaden their horizons. If they are looking for a new place to eat, they will surf Twitter or Facebook. Or, they will type it in Google and check out the results. Whatever platform they choose, you need to use social media to your advantage.
For starters, social media for restaurants is a great way to connect with your customers. Instead of talking to them in person, you can talk to them remotely. Also, you can cater for more people. Some customers might like to call and make a reservation, but others will like to book online.
Last but not least, the advertising opportunities are endless. A handful of posts will inform your followers of any offers or entertain that might be of interest.
#2: More Than The Food
You won’t survive by only serving food. You have to give customers a reason to come back apart from the menu.
The best restaurants mix their menus with live entertainment to add another level to the experience. Of course, the entertainment should be in line with the ethos of the business. But, there is no reason to omit it from your business strategy. A tip: advertise to local musicians.
Local musicians are always looking for gigs, and they come at a discount. As long as they are good, both parties will benefit from the partnership.
#3: Offer Incentives
Due to the amount of competition, you need to be able to stand out from the crowd. There are plenty of ways to do it, but an incentive is the best option. Nothing brings the customers back for more than a weekly deal that saves them money.
In fact, they will gladly pass up better food just to save a few dollars. A good example is a curry and beer night. One day during the week, you can provide customers with a free drink if they buy a curry. It is simple, and you will see it everywhere you look. Still, it works like a charm.
#4: Meet And Greet
Customer service goes a long way in the restaurateur world. Your customers expect a certain level of service when they enter the building, and you should oblige.
An excellent level of customer service will set you out from the crowd. If you match it with good food, you will always be on their minds. Always remember that a smile and a joke always work well with customers.
No one can guarantee a steady flow of customers, but the above will make it more likely.