How do restaurants save on guests, and why is it not always bad?
We open a family restaurant – how much will it cost? Remember the moment in the movie “What Men Talk About” when one of the characters talks about visiting a restaurant? About the feeling when the doorman about to ask: “What are you doing here?” Unfortunately, many people in our country still have a stereotype that restaurants are expensive and inaccessible.
In fact, now everything is changing, there are more and more enterprises of an average price level, but of high quality, with which it is becoming increasingly difficult for restaurants to compete. In these conditions, the restaurants themselves are ready to look for ways to reduce the cost and price of the finished meal for the guest. And it is not necessary (even disastrous for business) to use the path of deterioration. There are many tools to reduce costs with which you can maintain quality and attract more customers.
The formation of the cost of a meal for a guest begins even at the stage of designing a restaurant: selecting equipment, repair and furnishing, and auditing contractors. For example, you can buy an expensive Italian fridge table or find a domestic counterpart with the same characteristics. Perhaps the depreciation period will be shorter, but the difference in price will make dishes cheaper, repay investments faster and buy a new one in 2-3 years. Taking into account the development of technology, new chips in equipment will appear by this time, which will make working with it more convenient.
Restaurateurs can reduce costs at the initial stage by using non-standard approaches. For example, the loft style is now popular. I know restaurants where furniture is made from pallets – a stylish and inexpensive solution. Or the acquisition of your own phytowall for growing items that are expensive to purchase or that are difficult to find in the season – rosemary, mint, any spicy herbs. In this case, the guest receives fresh products and does not overpay.
In general, the freshness and quality of products for an entrepreneur who wants to stay in this business for as long as possible should be in the first place. In the most successful restaurants with Michelin stars, managers themselves choose products. This is the standard that you need to strive for, working at any level. One of my franchisees travels to the market on their own every morning and buys vegetables for each of his enterprises in order to be sure that the product that will be on the guest’s table is of the very quality that he expects.
Of course, the restaurateur can use all these tools and at the same time leave the output price well above the average level. I believe that this is far from the most successful model in catering. Here we are already talking about the approach to the business of this entrepreneur. In my opinion, it is worth striving for a win-win strategy when everyone remains the winner – both the owner and the guest. Guests every year become smarter, more inventive, spoiled – you need to be able to adapt to it.
How to understand what approach an entrepreneur uses? Only on my own experience or based on reviews on trusted resources (otzyv.ru, www.tripadvisor.ru, restoran.ru). But reviews are a very subjective matter. Some businesses may have an undeservedly low rating because the reviewers did not find what they expected. You need to pay attention not only to the ratio of good and bad reviews, but also to their content, and according to those criteria that are important for you.
First of all, of course, you need to trust yourself and not be afraid to try. Restaurant premium quality at an affordable price is now quite realistic. And if you really want to go to an expensive restaurant, almost any guest can afford a glass of wine and salad. Such experience is also needed to understand what to compare with.