Every restaurant owner wants to know how they can attract as many customers as possible to their restaurant, and with today’s economic climate this is arguably more important than ever. As we enter a cost of living crisis, consumers are making difficult choices about how they spend their money. Therefore, it’s essential for your business to continue to provide a meaningful service in order to ensure that you attract customers throughout this challenging period.
Since the beginning of the year, there has been a decrease in consumer confidence caused by the cost of living crisis. This has been a factor in the decline in customers choosing to eat out. This is seen by, 55% of people say they are going out for food and drinks less compared to six months ago. Additionally, 61% of consumers plan to cut takeaways this year. These are concerning statistics for food business owners and navigating through the cost of living crisis will be challenging. However, there are methods that your business can take to ensure you remain strong and relevant.
Focus on your values
Firstly, this current economic climate is the perfect opportunity to differentiate yourself from competitors. Focus on your businesses values and what makes you unique. By doing this you’ll remind your customers why they chose you in the first place. This could be your commitment to sustainability or the constant great quality of your food.
The latter (quality of food) is the top consumer consideration when choosing where to dine. So, its vital for your quality of food to remain high whilst keeping prices in check. This can be done by upselling, offering customers upgrade options to their meal such as a greater quality side like Avikos sweet potato fries. This constant focus on values and continued attention on what you’re already good at will most likely leave customers satisfied after every visit, improving the chance of word-of-mouth marketing. Whilst simultaneously generating increased revenue.
Nurture your current customers
Of course, every business will aim to reach new customers, but nurturing and effectively reaching your current customer base will be viable and potentially the most appropriate method for your business. According to studies, acquiring new customers can be anywhere between 5 to 25 times more expensive than retaining an existing one, so the importance of nurturing your current customers is clear. Customer loyalty promotions are an obvious option here, rewarding your customers for their continued support of your business. Whilst promotions like these can slightly reduce your profit margin, they significantly increase the likelihood of repeat purchases.
74% of consumers would define brand loyalty as visiting a store or outlet 3 or more times and in order to inspire customers to become loyal to your brand 77% would agree that the product was the top motivator. Also, for customers that are loyal to a brand over half of these would join their loyalty programme. Therefore, focusing on your values and continuing with what you’re already great at, such as your food, could be great foundation to introduce a loyalty scheme. Which could increase the likelihood of repeat customers and improve sales
Communicate effectively with your audience
Finally, the cost of living crisis will affect you and your customers in different ways. Its important to be transparent with your audience to ensure they understand your decisions. As well as this, listening to your audience’s feedback is paramount in this environment. Their feedback will allow your business to tailor your decisions to their needs. This communication can be done online and through social media. Ensure you highlight that you understand the current difficulties of the current economic climate and the potential solutions to this. This will mean that your customers will feel valued by your business, and your marketing strategy will be more effective due to having greater knowledge on your audience. Therefore, you will likely attract more customers from respecting them and acting on their feedback.