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Jul 14, 2020
3 min read
Last update: May 17, 2024

What Restaurants Can Do To Promote Patrons In The New World

New Patrons in the Age of COVID-19

We all see it coming- the light at the end of the tunnel. Our favorite restaurants are reopening! But, is it safe to venture out? Will there still be people to order that great dish or original cocktail? While you may be excited to grab your favorite table or booth, others may need a little more coaxing. That favorite spot of yours is in desperate need of new patrons. How will they make this happen?

Expected Precautions

With many of the businesses starting to reopen, restaurants have a special place in the eye of the public. They can feel homey or classy or perfectly underrated. The atmosphere that they build is what draws in the crowds.

On returning to our favorite joints, remember that they have health and safety protocols to follow just like everyone else. There will be social distancing and an altered way of ordering and enjoying your meal. That’s not a negative thing. Many restaurants have gotten pretty creative to drive new business.

Owners are Stepping Up

Many of you wonderful owners are looking at creative ways to welcome back the regulars as well as reach a new customer base. Many restaurants have started to include outdoor dining as an option since being indoors in close quarters only helps spread the virus. This is a very responsible approach. Tables are able to be spread out, and the number of guests to be seated at one time can be decided ahead of time to set the expectation of your guests.

Another option is catering and curbside pickup. I recently visited a coffee shop in Upstate New York that set up a cute rustic table in the doorway and took orders from there. It was very easy and I could get my coffee and breakfast with ease, and no one was right behind me in line.

Catering and meal kits are getting very popular with this new way of life. You may think of catering as only something for wedding and office parties, but it has so many amazing draws. As a business owner, look at ways to make these options work for you. Do your customers need meals for their family after a long day of work? Survey your customers to find out what they want and need. Catered meals can be done for as little as 4 people. This is a nice option for essential workers who may not have time to cook. Offering meal kits allows your customers to enjoy their favorites from home without the fear of having it turn out wrong.

What Else Can You Do?

Look at things that may make people nervous about dining out. We are in a world where people are aware of the effect on the environment. Offering online ordering and cashless payment options are key to driving new business. If customers see that they can check out a full menu and order online, they will choose you over the competition. This keeps your staff and your customers safe.

If you run a brewery or distillery, try bottling your beverages. Many small distilleries and breweries are finding success in this avenue of sales. Customers love supporting local businesses, so give your business that edge.

More than anything, people want to feel safe when they visit your establishment. If you can make that happen, you will keep new business coming through the doors. Adding fun, interesting, and interactive elements to your restaurant will help you to stand out from the crowd. Are you a restaurant owner looking for ways to grow your business? Feel free to reach out to an expert at SBG Funding to discuss your business needs today!

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