Ever since the pandemic occurred, the world had to drop everything they’re doing. People had to stop every personal and physical interaction with anyone. The lockdown was implemented worldwide, and everyone was required to stay indoors and minimize their interaction outdoors to lower their risk of contracting the deadly virus.
These safety precautions have adversely impacted the majority of businesses worldwide, especially the food and restaurant industry. Before the pandemic, restaurants and other food outlets thrived by serving food and beverages to their customers. But with the new normal and the continuous threat of COVID-19, big and small food enterprises had no other option but to adapt.
So, how can food businesses continue to profit and succeed despite the new normal brought by the coronavirus? These tips may help you and your food outlet thrive and continue to serve your customers during these uncertain times.
- Revamp Your Business Operation
Before the pandemic, most restaurants sold and served meals for their customers dining in their establishments. But because of the new normal, people were restricted from visiting crowded places like restaurants. That’s why many food businesses were forced to temporarily close for a few months due to the lack of customers buying their food. However, just because your customers are not visiting your establishment doesn’t mean they don’t miss ordering your products.
One way to adapt and continue serving your customers without putting anyone at risk of the virus is by revamping your business operation. You can still serve them with the latest trends in the food service industry, like meal kits and prepackaged meals. But this time, you’ll need to put more emphasis on your delivery services and take-outs. They can order and pay for their orders online before you can deliver their meals to their doorstep. You can also create a special pick-up zone or a drive-thru for your customers, so they no longer have to step inside your restaurant.
This way, your customers can still avail of your products without leaving their houses or exposing themselves outdoors. Most importantly, this operational revamp will help your business thrive and earn profits despite the ongoing pandemic.
- Provide A Safer Establishment
As the years go by, some establishments are slowly reopening their businesses. This could be good news, especially for those that need to catch up with the loss of revenues caused by the lockdown. However, before you welcome dine-in customers, ensure you secure a safe food establishment first and observe the health and hygiene safety protocols.
For example, you can place a hand sanitizer or alcohol on your entryway to encourage your customers to disinfect their hands before entering. You can also place a huge sign upfront saying that people not wearing face masks cannot get inside.
Furthermore, limit your chairs to two per table and rearrange your tables by adding a one-to-two-meter distance in between to promote social distancing. Most importantly, make sure every table and chair are clean and disinfected thoroughly before letting the next customer sit down. Providing a safer and cleaner establishment will assure your customers that their safety is your priority. With this, they’ll keep on coming when the lockdown and stay-at-home rules loosen.
- Practice Proper Food Hygiene
Another aspect you need to look out for to keep your food business thriving is practicing proper food hygiene. Your business revolves around food, which means you should prioritize food quality and sanitation. Otherwise, serving bad food will not only get you bad reviews, but you could also put your customers’ health at risk. Thus, remind everyone in the workforce to practice proper food handling such as:
- Cleaning and sanitizing utensils and food containers after every use
- Using gloves and food tongs when handling food
- Wearing personal protective equipment (e.g., face masks, hair net, face shield) during food preparation
It’s also recommended to temporarily close your buffet service to avoid crowding and prevent people from sharing or touching serving spoons and plates.
- Stay Connected With Your Customers And Followers
This pandemic has been difficult for everyone, and your loyal customers and followers will surely understand and stick with you during these uncertain times. Even so, keep them engaged and ensure you stay connected with them. This can help retain their interest in supporting and buying your products. You can post on social media about your new products designed for take-out buyers. You can also talk about the latest updates of your business and how you’re adapting.
No one knows how long this pandemic will last. So, the best thing an entrepreneur can do for their food business is to stay adaptable. After all, the business industry has always been dynamic and ever-changing. So, remember these tips, keep your employees and customers safe, and don’t be afraid to experiment with innovations, as these things will keep your business thriving during these challenging times.