How to Keep Your Restaurant Busy During Winter

/ Restaurant Tips / February 3

Hands Holding Cappuccino Cups-How to Keep Your Restaurant Busy During Winter

It’s tough to get customers into your restaurant during the doldrums of winter, especially if you’re in a particularly cold or snowy part of the country or during the post-holiday months. While it can seem like a challenge to keep your restaurant busy during this time of the year, there are ways to drum up business and keep your customers happy.

Here are some tips to help your restaurant stay busy during the winter months.

Offer Carry-Out & Delivery Options

One of the reasons why business can slow down during the winter months is because of the weather: it’s often snowy, icy or cold, and many customers feel that it’s a hassle to go out in such conditions. So, if your customers won’t come to you, you can get to your customers in other ways.

Offering carry-out, curbside pickup or delivery options lets your kitchen stay hopping and keeps your business thriving during the harsh winter months. With more and more places offering delivery thanks to third-party services like GrubHub and DoorDash, it’s definitely a service worth considering. If you aren’t sure about the delivery route, you can offer carry-out or curbside pickup options to your customers and meet them halfway.

Special Deals and Discounts

Between the holidays and all the bills that come afterwards, winter can be a rather expensive time for your guests. Offering special deals, discounts and coupons can be a great way to alleviate some of the financial stress for your customers while also bringing in business. As far as what types of promotions you run, it’s all up to you and what you can reasonably discount: you could host a winter-long happy hour during the work week, a hot chocolate punch card with a free drink as a reward, a hearty lunch special or a discount on delivery or carry-out every Friday.

Whatever you choose, your customers will definitely appreciate the chance to save some money.

Focus on Your Marketing Efforts

Winter is the perfect time to put some thought and effort into your marketing campaigns. This is how you’ll get the word out about any special events you’re hosting, any discounts or deals you’re offering and what your winter hours are. One of the easiest ways to market your restaurant during wintertime is by utilizing your social media accounts. You can reach your clientele through targeted paid promotions on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, and showcasing how you’re chasing away those winter blues at your restaurant.

This is also a great way to communicate if you do need to close your restaurant due to inclement weather. Additionally, make sure your website is up-to-date with everything going on at your eatery for guests who may not be following your social media accounts.

Update Your Menu with Winter-Ready Dishes

The winter months are the perfect time of year to add hearty, warm dishes to your menu. Whether you’re adding festive fare to your menu for the holidays, or beefing up your selection with comfort food, making your menu season-appropriate will help your guests cope with the cold. Don’t limit yourself to just new food items, though: add some specialty drinks like hot chocolate, a special coffee or warm cocktails like mulled wine to keep everyone feeling cozy.

Host Special Events

If you’re determined to get your guests to come to your restaurant, hosting a special event is a great way to persuade them to visit. Not only will this get them through the door, but it’ll also keep your guests in your restaurant for a long period of time. Whether it’s a live music night, a local DJ or a game day party, throwing some kind of bash is a great way to beat those winter blues. And don’t forget about wintertime holidays like Valentine’s Day, so consider planning a themed dinner event for special days like this.

Find more restaurant tips and more from Parts Town, and keep your business—and commercial kitchen—in tip-top shape.

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