With nearly a week of November completed already, families all over Canada are excitedly gearing up for the holiday season. But, if we’re being honest, we’re bound to experience a holiday season unlike any we’ve ever seen before, aren’t we? The coronavirus is likely to keep a great deal of consumers out of the malls and away from restaurants. As a restaurant owner, you’re surely bracing for the worst.
Generally speaking, every holiday season is a good one for restaurateurs. People love to spend time with each other while enjoying meals in the comfort of a local eatery. COVID-19 restrictions may be preventing that from happening at your establishment this year. So what can you do to still make your restaurant a go-to holiday destination?
Step up your Instagram game.
Do you know anyone who isn’t on social media? We’re guessing not many, if any at all. Utilize your company’s social media accounts to promote the fact that your restaurant is practicing all COVID-19 safety protocols. Instagram is especially popular because of the mouth-watering visuals it allows you to offer your followers. If you are offering dine-in experiences, be sure to highlight the safety regulations you’re following on your Instagram page. And don’t forget to plug your takeout specials!
“Instagram should be your best friend during the holiday season,” insists Amber Mullaney on Forbes.com, “Images of themed meals and delicious seasonal favourites like pumpkin pie and festive ham dinners can boost your social engagement and ultimately get diners in the door. Use hashtags to get new social users to your account and build brand awareness outside of your followers.”
Offer gift cards.
It’s hard to argue that gift cards make ideal holiday gifts. Even though some consider them impersonal, gift cards always give their recipients what they want. And who doesn’t want to eat? By offering gift cards in your restaurant, you’ll be able to boost revenue and encourage return visits.
As 247Waiter.com explains, “gift cards not only allow you to pre-sell your food and services (thus helping you start the next year with a bang), but they are usually given to people that haven’t been to your restaurant before – and people with gift cards almost always spend more than the value of their cards when they come in to redeem them.”
Promote limited-time offers.
Naturally, the holiday season won’t last forever. So it’s important to market your restaurant in a way that encourages immediate action. Launch special menu items that will only be available until the new year. Plug your discounted prices that may only be around for the month of November. You get the idea.
“Use menu engineering to determine your all-star menu items, and then set limited availability or purchase windows for your (limited-time offers), as that can create a sense of urgency,” encourages Mullaney, “Promote the availability window through your social channels and with menu inserts and table tents in your restaurant. Another option is to offer seasonal discounts through buy one, get one free deals or coupons with defined timelines.”
Allow customers to order food online.
As we blogged about last month, statistics show there are many benefits to allowing your customers to order food directly from your website. With Unity Payments, you can quickly set up an online ordering system for your restaurant! To learn more, please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-800-661-3761 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.