I was at a local family-owned neighborhood bistro recently when my server asked if I was interested in “ordering up” my size selection. After asking the difference in my initial choice in comparison to the server’s suggested, “size-up” portion, I acquiesced, and “Super-Sized” my cup of soup to a bowl of soup. Why? The server very convincingly implied that for just a few pennies more I’d be getting a much more substantial serving for the money – a tiny outlay more, yet a vast difference in size...a deal, right? Why not savor a larger portion of that amazing Tomato Basil homemade soup for less than a dollar difference. Sounded appealing to me and, more importantly, to my wallet.
At least that’s the buzz I’d been hearing all over the radio and on the TV: “More is better!” While waiting for my now Super-Sized bowl of soup to arrive at my table, I idly glanced around at the other patrons’ food choices.
Go to any fast food establishment, the most highbrow eatery, or even the local mom-n-pop bistro and notice the portions: they are overly generous and any single entree could easily feed a minimum of two people. Yet, it is rare to see anyone sharing one of these portions. And it is not common to see someone requesting a take-home box at the end of their meal – instead the uneaten food from the oversized entree on the majority of most eaters' plates comes back through the kitchen and lands in the trash where it becomes waste.
So what does this mean to you if you are a restaurateur? There are several ways you can increase profits, including:
- Reducing food costs — Even slightly reducing portion sizes can increase profits – without creating a need to change the cost of the plate.
- Maximizing your menu — Effectively marketing items on your menu can increase profits across the board by selling more to each customer – use easy-to-read symbols, easy-to-understand descriptions, and combo meals that keep clients moving through a menu-line.
- Reducing theft — When the profits leave in the form of spirits or liquors in employee pockets, it’s time to break out the security cameras. A great company that caters only to the restaurant industry is Digital Witness www.digitalwitness.net. This company helps restaurant owners keep more of what they earn!
- Improving productivity — What keeps satisfied customers coming back for more? Well, good service, of course! Digital Witness can again help restaurant owners who want to know exactly how long it takes to turn a table or seat a guest. Suddenly, improving productivity is as easy as running a report!
- Introducing cost-effective techniques across the board — Reducing waste (for example, putting fewer rolls in a basket), implementing cost-saving processes and systems, creating a cost-conscious culture, and aligning client expectations with actual food and services are just a few of the ways a restaurant can dramatically increase profits/reduce expenses.
In one of the fiercest and most competitive industries today, making a profit has never been more important. More than 50 percent of all restaurants are owned by families or are considered “mom-n-pop” shops. Follow these steps for higher profits, and for more information, give us a call today!