It’s no secret that everybody wants their restaurant to stand out. What’s to stop diners from choosing the restaurant across the street over yours?
Well, a variety of things, actually! If you follow these ideas, you’ll be able to attract more diners and be the first choice for their cravings.
Below you can find ways to ensure your restaurant stands out from competitors:
Offer unique or signature dishes that are not found at other restaurants in the area:
Create your own unique recipes that set your restaurant apart from others in the area. Try incorporating exotic spices, herbs, and other ingredients into your dishes to create unique and memorable flavors. Using locally sourced ingredients and being transparent about it will also help attract customers.
Be creative with the presentation of your dishes, as the way food looks can be as important as the way it tastes.
Introduce new dishes on a regular basis to keep customers interested and coming back.
Offer specials, discounts or events to attract customers:
Happy hour specials or early bird deals attract customers during typically slower times of the day
Offer takeout and delivery service to customers:
Offering takeout and delivery service can not only be an avenue for added revenue, but can also help you reach new customers who may not have visited your restaurant otherwise.
Build a strong reputation for excellent customer service:
Word-of-mouth is a powerful marketing tool. Make sure your customers leave happy by providing great food and exceptional service.
Hire staff that are friendly, outgoing, and have a positive attitude. Train them to provide excellent customer service and make sure they understand the importance of guest satisfaction.
Communicate clear customer service expectations for your staff to follow, such as prompt service, friendly attitudes, and attention to detail.
Show appreciation to customers by providing complimentary drinks or desserts, or by offering discounts on future visits.
Increase brand awareness by incorporating your logo, color scheme, and marketing message throughout your restaurant:
Create a unique name and logo that reflects the theme and cuisine of your restaurant. Make sure it is easy to read and memorable.
Establish a consistent color scheme that will be used across all of your restaurant’s marketing materials, including menus, napkin dispensers, business cards, and even your website.
Use consistent imagery across all marketing materials, such as food photography, interior shots of the restaurant, staff members and customers.
Build a loyal customer base through a loyalty program or rewards program:
Create a loyalty program to reward frequent customers, which will encourage them to come back and to refer new customers to your restaurant.
Offer a diverse menu that caters to different dietary needs:
Gluten-free, vegetarian or vegan options are very important needs to cater to and will help diners with specific restrictions choose your restaurant over one that does not include these options on their menu
Create a memorable atmosphere or ambiance, such as decorating the restaurant in a distinctive style or by offering outdoor seating:
Use lighting to create a warm and inviting atmosphere. Use dim lighting for a romantic ambiance, or bright lighting for a casual and lively atmosphere.
Maximize the use of outdoor dining. Create a relaxed and inviting atmosphere that takes advantage of natural light and fresh air.
Jazz up the walls with artwork and decor to create a visually interesting and appealing atmosphere. Consider partnering with a local artist for decorations that reflects the culture and history within the local community.
Incorporate natural elements, such as plants or natural wood, to create a fresh and inviting atmosphere.
Leverage different themes throughout your restaurant to cater to different customer needs, such as a quiet area for intimate conversations, or a lively area for groups.
Build relationships with local organizations and other businesses in the community:
Consider partnering with other local businesses, such as hotels or event venues, to offer catering services or to promote each other.
Create a sense of community among customers by hosting events or fundraisers:
Hosting special events, offering live music, or throwing themed parties, can be a great way to bring in new customers and keep existing customers engaged.
Create a strong online presence through social media, website and review sites:
Build a website, create social media accounts and make sure your restaurant is listed on online directories and review sites. This will help customers find your restaurant and read reviews from other customers.
Engage with guests and join online conversations. Use social media to post pictures of food, menu items and events to entice customers to come in. Use Instagram, Facebook and other platforms to reach customers and build engagement.
Advertise your restaurant to the local community through flyers, billboards and local newspapers.
Ultimately, the key to standing out as a restaurant is to find what sets your business apart from others in the area and to emphasize that unique aspect in all aspects of your operations, marketing and customer service.