The cold season is pretty much over, and the days are getting warmer. Summer is here! For those of you who own a hotel and/or restaurant, summer means it’s going to get busy.

Are those summer-exclusive menus from last year ready to get dusted off?

Aside from the fact that the Australian summer coincides with what is probably the biggest and longest holiday season celebrated globally, there’s one other reason why restaurants get jam-packed during the summer…the longer days.

Longer days mean more people are out and about (as long as the temperature is tolerable, of course). It’s the perfect opportunity for you to invite more customers! The goal is, of course, to attract new patrons and to keep old customers, ultimately to boost your profit.

To that end, it is only apt to start your preparations now.

We have 6 ideas that you can implement in your restaurant for the incoming season. Get your restaurant ready to bring in the heat!

Let yourself be known

There’s a tonne of profit to be made during summer. Thankfully, due to the increasing prevalence of the internet, you don’t have to be left out. You have all the tools, literally at your fingertips – it’s called social media. To be more specific, Instagram.

It has been an increasing trend among the young ones (including the young-at-heart) to take pictures of their food before touching it with their forks. There could only be one reason why it is actually trending – because food pics have lots of viewers.

A recent study revealed that people around the world aged 18-35 spend a total of 120 hours or 5 days looking at pictures of food on Instagram. 30% say they would avoid a restaurant if they had a bad Instagram page.

Pro tip: Reach out to local people in the business of posting food and restaurant reviews online, especially the ones with a huge following, and see if they can include your most picture-perfect meals, desserts, or drinks on their pages for everyone to see.

Make sure your personnel are prepared

The influx of people during the summer probably means you’ll be short staffed, and there’s no other way than to hire new staff. Sometimes, it would mean hiring newbies and rookies.

Start looking early so you can get them trained before the crowds come flocking in. Speaking of training, make sure you have proper training plans for this purpose. If they’re used to your equipment and processes by the time spring ends, you’re good to go.

Your staff must be trained in cleanliness, too! You wouldn’t want customers giving you bad reviews due to bad hygiene, right? Alsco provides professional workwear such as chef uniforms, wait staff uniforms, aprons, and even cleaning materials like anti-bacterial tea towels, all of which are kept clean, crisp, and fresh.

Use modern technology to your advantage

Imagine being a hungry diner looking for good food. They want short wait times, but fast food won’t be enough to fulfil their cravings. You can provide what they want, thanks to new tech options that speed up the processes that a customer usually goes through.

Pay-at-the-table is gaining traction worldwide. It can reduce a restaurant’s wait time by nearly 20% on average. There’s some time before summer, and it’s never too early to start checking tech like this now.

Try to utilise user-friendly tech with a gentle learning curve so your summertime part timers can learn things in less time. It is more efficient and less error-prone when your employees are mostly concerned with remembering the customers’ orders, instead of being preoccupied with how to input stuff into the system.

Your restaurant is not limited to its four corners

Auto Foodtruck

When the weather’s nice, meaning it’s not too hot, moving outdoors can be a solution when you have too many people coming in. If your restaurant doesn’t have the space for that, you can set up shop elsewhere, using food stalls or food trucks in places where people gather, like food festivals, etc.

This doubles as a great and effective way to market your brand to new customers, too.

Give your restaurant that summer feel

Cater to seasonal tastes with the overall feel of your restaurant.

  • Add some summer décor, like flowers or little cloth umbrellas
  • Open your windows and let the summer breeze flow in
  • Print out new menus with a summer theme

Speaking of the menu, add some seasonal items such as:

  • Seasonal refreshing drinks and cocktails – remember to add that tropical feel
  • Offer seasonal fruits and local summertime delicacies
  • Other summer-inspired specials

Extend your preparation to overall cleanliness

A dirty restaurant is not Instagram-able. To put it in simpler terms, it is disastrously unappealing. On that note, it is a bother (and probably a waste of money) to hire staff just to clean all the cloth and linen your restaurant uses on a daily basis.

If that’s the case for you, outsourcing would be a better choice.

Alsco laundry workers

Imagine… the heaps and piles of tablecloths, tea towels, wipes, drapes, curtains, aprons, workwear, everything that needs to be washed. Hiring a trusty laundry service that would take care of all of that is a smart investment for your business.

Alsco provides hassle-free laundry services. We take all of the linen off of your doorstep, put it through a thorough laundering process that gets rid of the worst stains and bacteria, and bring it back straight to your door, crisp, clean, and ready to be used.

The more people you serve, the more stuff you have to clean. It is a worthy investment for your brand, your employees, and all of your customers alike.

Summertime is one of the best times of the year

…and it is wise to take advantage of it. Use every leverage you can get, and let your business be the hottest place.

The good news is, you can use Alsco exactly for that purpose. With a variety of rental programs and services that we can tailor to your specific business’s needs and demands, we can help you make your next summer more profitable and enjoyable for all parties involved – you, your staff, and your customers.

Or you can contact us now if you have questions or concerns!

Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons Images by Jamain