3 Ways to Prepare Your Restaurant for Holiday Success
The holiday season is a time when families come together to celebrate traditions and enjoy the company of loved ones. For restaurants, the stretch of holidays between Thanksgiving and the New Year can be a “make or break” end of year storm of stress and anxiety. Being properly prepared for the holidays can help restaurant owners and operators make the most of the opportunity and close out 2019 with a smile on their face. Here are 3 tips to help you protect your profits and keep those tables turning through the holidays.
Plan Some Great Holiday LTOs
If you don’t think special holiday Limited Time Offers (LTOs) are important, just consider the cult followings the Pumpkin Spice Latte and Candy Cane-flavored desserts have enjoyed.
Having a few signature menu items and drinks that are only around for the holidays can be a powerful attractor of holiday traffic as customers are gathering to celebrate.
The best way to build a good LTO program is to consider your restaurant, or chains, overall brand and think of clever ways to integrate holiday themes into what you are known for. Seasonal cocktails, appetizers, and desserts are a great place to start injecting some inspiring holiday ingredients into your menu.
It’s also important to have seasonal LTOs to help with marketing and advertising campaigns to engage customers over the holidays. Showing that you have special things available for a limited period can help you stand out from a crowded market of brands that are just offering the same old fare. Engaging followers on social media and traditional advertising outlets with the offers makes you more relevant to where your customers’ minds and hearts are focused during the holidays.
Fill Your Dining Room with Holiday Spirit
One important thing you can do to attract more holiday restaurant-goers is create a unique holiday atmosphere. Make sure your windows are decorated with holiday themes to attract passing traffic and entice visitors to stop and join your festivities.
More people will be out and about doing holiday shopping and meeting with friends during the holidays, and you want to assure them that your restaurants are the BEST place to come and keep the spirit alive.
The music playlists in your dining room need a major overhaul for the holidays as well. The power of music in restaurants can encourage longer dwell times for visitors that can produce more dessert and cocktail orders per ticket. The right music for the holidays can also improve mood and sentimentality with guests, and having these things associated with your restaurant brand can pay dividends for months to come.
Don’t forget to also have front-of-house servers and staff properly trained on holiday etiquette and have seasonal greetings trained into each interaction. Staff should also be ready to offer holiday specials and encourage more dessert orders, as guests are in a more festive mood. The main thing is to ensure that your level of service is up to the added pressure of helping relieve holiday stress and meet higher expectations.
Set the Table for Holiday Success
One critical thing that many restaurant owners and operators may overlook during their seasonal preparations is planning their dining room layout. The placement and strategy for tables and chairs is different during the holiday season and being prepared is good insurance to make the most of it for your business.
Holiday groups are going to usually be larger than during other times of year. More family get-togethers, office parties, and friend meet-ups mean you’ll be pushing tables together to accommodate.
Having the dining room plan laid out to make this process easier and more efficient can help make quicker adjustments more table turns.
One way to make this process even easier and more enjoyable for your guests is to invest in FLAT® table bases and Equalizers. These innovative products make it easy to quickly align tabletops for multiple tables that leave no inconvenient “ridges” between table surfaces. Having misaligned tables can be a recipe for disaster with large holiday parties when drinks can spill and plates can wobble on uneven surfaces. The last thing you need during a holiday dinner rush is to have staff under tables trying desperately to align tables.
FLAT table bases use a patented hydraulic base design that automatically levels tables and allows multiple tables to be aligned with a gently push or pull on the top. FLAT Equalizers use a similar technology in replacement feet so you can repair/correct existing tables quickly and economically.
The added benefit of FLAT products? NO MORE WOBBLES! FLAT products are a permanent solution to tables that wobble and cause guests undue stress. Nothing can ruin the holiday spirit quicker than having an unruly table spilling drinks and causing a headache for your guests.
Your dining room should be a festive and welcoming place for your guests. Having furniture that makes it easier to seat them quickly and correctly is a great way to make sure they’ll be coming back throughout the year.
If you have any questions about how FLAT products work or want to schedule a visit with one of our staff, feel free to contact us today. Your holiday guests will be happy that you did!