Running a bar and restaurant is rewarding, but only if you know how to manage it properly. As the owner, you need to strategize in different areas — sometimes simultaneously — to ensure that the business continues to operate, offers the best services, and stands out from the competition.
If you’re looking for money-saving tips for your bar and restaurant, we’ve got you covered. This article contains six strategies that can help new bar and restaurant owners. These can help boost your profits without requiring you to make drastic changes to your existing business plan.
1. Revisit Your Menu
Offering a diverse menu to your patrons doesn’t equate to long-term success. On the contrary, it can have a negative effect as the menu might look unappealing to some customers, and your business will have to spend more to serve them.
Revisit your menu regularly and remove unpopular meals. For example, if the spring rolls aren’t selling as well as the other items, replace them with other items. Ideally, you should include seasonal meals or dishes to keep customers excited and save costs on ingredients.
To create a seasonal menu, find what’s in season. For spring, offer meals that use blueberries, snap peas, and artichokes, as these are in-season and cheaper. For summer, you have watermelons, tomatoes, and bell peppers. Don’t forget to check Aldi, Costco, and Makro offers today to score better deals on ingredients and a variety of foods when buying in bulk for your restaurant’s needs.
2. Hire a Professional to Handle Business Finances
One of the biggest mistakes entrepreneurs make is to handle their business’s cash flow by themselves. This setup isn’t ideal, as you’ll likely have your hands full managing different aspects of the bar and restaurant business.
Choose to hire a chartered accountant to handle your business’s finances. Taking this route will save you plenty of time and money because you’ll have a professional who will supervise payroll and avoid tax penalties and fines. A chartered accountant also provides a wide variety of services, which can help you save money, manage growth, and plan ahead.
3. Use the Internet for Marketing
Spending thousands of dollars a month on marketing isn’t an assurance that your business will succeed. Nowadays, you can attain business success by using a free resource: the Internet.
Harness the power of social media to boost your bar and restaurant business. Take high-quality photos of the food from your menu and share them online. Use Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram to tell the world about your brand — who you are and why you’re different.
Most importantly, use social media to learn more about your target audience and build professional relationships with them. Engaging with your target audience on social media elevates your business profile, amplifies brand awareness, and builds customer trust.
4. Automate Your Day-to-Day Activities
If you have just started out your business journey then maximizing your cash flow by cutting down on time and resources on everyday tasks is essential to maintain a positive balance sheet.
Think of invoicing, the time it takes to issue recurring invoices is frustrating. There is potential to save money on this process by automating your invoicing process.
Start by using a free Google sheet invoice template, and after you’ve created a list with all of your client’s information you can dynamically generate invoices with different client information in a matter of minutes.
You will be surprised how much money you will save in the long run, if you have your invoicing system automated.
5. Take Care of Your Employees
Your business is inexistent without your employees, which is why you should take care of them. Losing even one employee means spending resources on recruitment, onboarding, and training.
Prioritize taking care of your employees by providing them with the tools they need and ensuring their working environment is safe and comfortable. Make it a habit to listen to their feedback and allow them to have creative freedom in their work.
Keep in mind that small things do matter, so send them an email after hitting a milestone or a note of encouragement before the busy hours start. These small gestures are enough to boost your employees’ morale.
6. Hire Workforce Efficiently
While a restaurant has its own repeating customers, it is very common that most restaurants have a surge in clientele in particular seasons of the year.
So this means that your business is growing, sometimes even quicker than initially planned.
We all know that finding skilled and experienced people for the job is a hassle and often a shoot in the dark.
That’s why you should take advantage of the full-cycle recruiting process. Not only does it help in identifying and hiring the best candidates for a given position for a very short period of time, but the process also keeps track of the hiring pipeline, making it easier for future recruiting for the same or similar positions.
7. Invest in High-Quality Equipment and Collaboration Tools
Purchasing high-quality equipment might seem counterintuitive to saving money, but it’s actually beneficial to your business’s finances in the long run. Many appliances are now integrated with smart technologies and features that help cut costs. For instance, modern coffee makers can produce more coffee in less time.
After investing in new equipment, train your employees to operate these machines properly.
Investing in employee training early is better than regularly replacing equipment as your employees accidentally break the equipment.
Another example is when you have to assign new duties to your employees or give updates regarding specific tasks that they have completed.
Usually, for these types of updates, you hold meetings. But what ends up happening oftentimes is that the meetings tend to last longer than intended thus killing time and demotivating employees.
A solution here can be using a simple screen recorder which helps you capture your computer screen and talk through new duties and review existing ones.
You can then generate a unique link that you can share with your team only, so they can watch your video feedback on either their computer or mobile devices.
This way the need for meetings will decrease and more work will be done in general.
8. Be Creative With Events
Hiring entertainers is a great way to attract customers, but this strategy is super expensive. Additionally, it doesn’t always guarantee success.
A better and cheaper option is to host your events to draw in huge crowds. For instance, you can host board game nights or singles nights during the weekend. Theme nights are also fun events to have in your bar and restaurant. Have the customers dress up for Christmas or Halloween and give out a special prize to the best-dressed individual.
Hosting unique events will make your bar and restaurant more popular. Plus, it makes your target audience see how fun and creative your business is!
You don’t have to spend a lot to ensure that your bar and restaurant continue to operate successfully in the long term. By implementing the right strategies, you can achieve that goal while still being able to save a lot of money in the process.