The dining industry now seems all but dead given the current global health crisis. New York City, once the birthplace of many food innovations, has reportedly lost nearly $2 billion in restaurant sales. Even if the curve has been flattened, lockdowns are still in place and social distancing guidelines still need to be observed. People naturally gravitate to bars and restaurants to be friends and family and given the “new normal,” it might be a while before you can open your doors to accept dine-in customers.
Understandably, you’re going to want to recoup your losses and your bar, bakeshop, or restaurant is a good place to find items you can liquidate to stay afloat.
What to Keep
Don’t give up just yet. You could still earn money by offering your food for curbside pick-up or delivery. Many restaurants are showing signs of success in this way and are revamping their business model to accommodate this phenomenon. So, don’t fret. That servo depositor filling machine you purchased before the lockdown can still serve you well. In fact, you might need that now more than ever as orders for snacks and pastries have gone up.
Your freezer can also be your new best friend. Take a cue from other restaurants and offer heat-and-serve meals. Prepare big batches of your specialty and then stock them in the freezer. This should give you a chance to still earn while in lockdown.
Social Media Channels and Marketing Efforts
Now that you’re ready to once again sell to your customers, you need to turn to the power of social media. If you haven’t already started one, create an account on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. If you’ve already got social media accounts, fire them back up and post regular updates about the measures you are taking amid this global pandemic.
It might seem counterproductive to shell out money on Facebook ads at this time but the returns you’ll reap will be well worth it. Investing in Facebook ads for your restaurant will help you target the specific audience you need to reach. This targeted approach to social media marketing is just one of the advantages of getting those ads.
What to Scrap
You probably won’t be needing those special paintings or sculptures you bought to spruce up your place for a while. With in-house dining still difficult to manage, you might want to sell those decorative art pieces for now. Who knows when physical distancing guidelines will be lifted so these items would be the easiest ones to unload.
You can list them on eBay or on your own Facebook page. Some of your loyal customers might want something from your restaurant to remember you by and this would be a great way to reach them.
Tables and Chairs
Did you order custom-made furniture for your restaurant? Those can easily be marketed and sold on eBay and social media as well. Selling these is, of course, optional. You might still want to open your doors to dining patrons in the future, after all. But if you find yourself struggling to pay your workers, these items should be on your list of things that can go. You can always replace them in the future, but your loyal workers? Not so much.
The bottom line is that there is a lot of uncertainty that restaurateurs such as yourself will have to face. Before you get to the point of looking at things to sell or keep, you should sit down with your team and come up with ways to try to remain in business. Their input will be invaluable to you as we all navigate this “new normal.”