Its not what anyone wanted. But, we’re going into lockdown once more. It will be a challenging run up to the Christmas period. Lets not get into the rights and wrongs about the Government approach to Covid. Rather, we should focus on the positive strategies hospitality business owners have used to great effect since the beginnig of the Covid crisis which they will be able to ue again (fingers crossed) at the start of December.
Some outlets have thrived during this challenging time. Taking advantage of the government’s support to ensure their businesses can get the most from the situation has been key. Some thing to think about during this time re discussed below.
The number of people visiting hospitality sites is lower than pre-covid levels. Fear of the disease plays a major part. Equally there is concern over future earnings. The bleak economic outlook and rising unemployment is in people’s minds. This said, people still have an appetite for going out for food and drink. Just maybe not as often. As a result of going out less people are more ‘picky’ about where they go. They’re not going to settle for mediocrity. So do what you can to make the whole customer experience as good as it an be. A lick of paint? Sure. Creative new producst, definitely. But in general just focussing on the cutomer experience is key. Make sure you offer top-notch customer service and that high standards are delivered consistently. Failure to create a genuine quality offer isn’t going to attract customers looking for exacty that!
Many cafes and restaurants have found themselves forced to offer takeout. Often simply in an attempt to generate an income stream. its unsurprising that if you are closed to sit down trade then you look to innovate. More surprising is the widespread uptake by local customers supporting their local businesses. There is public consciouness of the position of hospitatlity. They are also happy to pay prices slightly higher than ‘tradtitional’ takeaway prices for options not normally available via takeaway. Subsequently, many businesses have created new revenue that has become a sustainable part of their business. Even as lockdown restrictions ease, this may well continue. They’ve added to their bottom line today and mitigated against any lockdown measures in the future. Pivoting in this way can be difficult to put into plce. It can require time and effort to get right. But the benefits are there. Fortunately, companies such as App4 have created easy to use plug-in software. This provides the tech required to offer an effective takeout menu – check it out – www.app4.co.uk
Finally, Covid has pushed councils to take a relaxed approach to the use of pavements and paved areas for outside seating. Given the restrictions in terms of who and how people can meet publicly. Approach your coucil, if you haven’t already and invest in making these outside spaces as comfortable as possible during the colder, winter months. Local councils are looking for affordable ways to support business rate payers. Successfully implementing such practices in a safe and tidy manner may see this initiative continue, long after Covid has gone.
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