What You’re Missing Out When You Don’t Consider Offering Catering Services
Sometimes you miss a couple of things in doing your business research, but then they turn out to be crucial to business development as they have a great factor in profit generation for your restaurant. A good example of this is catering. According to Technomic, the catering market has now grown into a $52.3 billion-a-year business and roughly 64% of this represents restaurant catering. Not offering catering services on your restaurant is a huge setback, because of the potential profit loss, or gain for that matter, that it inflicts in your business. To this day there are still plenty of restaurants that hesitate to offer catering services and are often torn between deciding to do it or not to.
If there is benefit in doing it, then therefore the question on whether or not you should offer catering services becomes irrelevant when measured against this!
Benefits of Catering Services
It’s not at all times that you can expect for people to just flood into your restaurant and dine in not matter what day it is, and the fact that seasonal changes can affect traffic even at the best restaurants is exactly the reason why you need to create an alternative income strategy. Creating a catering service will help keep revenue flowing, especially during times when foot traffic is at its lowest. Essentially we’ve also discovered that a restaurant gets its full seating capacity during weekends, holidays, spring and summer seasons. So any other days means you could get the average number of customers or below it.
To outline the difference between having catering services and not, here are some benefits that might convince you:
- It Brings in New Business – Catering services will allow your restaurant to grow in various ways that in themselves create new business opportunities. It becomes an entirely new front for your restaurant business and depending how long you’ve been in the food industry, you could get loyal customers to line up for you. Aside from your long time customers who will eventually want to hire you to cater food for any special occasion that they will setup, new potential customers will also want to your catering services as you have a solid reputation and their friends and acquaintances highly recommended you.
- It Can Help Boost Revenue even During Slow Months – As I mentioned earlier, there are going to be times when your restaurant will not bring in enough sales to justify the cost of operating it. Food will be wasted and expenditures allocated for their ingredients will not have returns. If people won’t come to your restaurant to eat for whatever reason, then bring your restaurant to them! That’s the power of catering services added to your restaurant business – it can turn around slow days and get you above the break-even profit-loss analysis.
- It Helps Reduce Waste – Because you only need to buy the ingredients for the meals based on the expected number of people who will attend the special event or gathering, almost 97% of food is served and almost nothing is wasted. That’s two-thumbs up from me as far as efficiency is concerned and the remaining 3% of the food you’ve prepared you can give them away to charity. You not only profit and saved the environment from your carbon footprint, but you’ve helped those less fortunate as well.
- It Allows Flexibility in Service Delivery – If you offer meals in buffet style, then that means you’ll save a lot of time in preparing them because they aren’t as laborsome compared to a full-service experience. It would be better to offer canned service than standard table service as you do in your restaurant, because you spend less time and money and your revenue stream steadily flows. But be flexible when your customers need you to.
- It Helps You Sell Premium Items Without Risking Cost Overruns – The typical restaurant scenario is that you buy premium cuts of meat and other expensive ingredients for your menu that you plan to prepare for a hundred guests, but only 25 people show up in all the 6 or 7 hours that you’re open. Of course you could put the meat in the freezer and the other stuff in the kitchen cabinet, but with each new day coming new expenditures arrive with it. This does not happen in catering services, because you will be informed by your customer beforehand the exact number of people that you need to prepare meals for.
Catering Services Balances Everything Out
There are other pockets of community groups that you may not heard of or have not had the chance to visit your restaurant, and they can help produce a great return in the long run. If you create an extension of your establishment (catering services) that could reach these groups, then it would be a great opportunity that you shouldn’t miss. Some restaurant business owners say that they’ve witnessed a 45% increase in sales when they started offering catering services and customers would contact them even from the city outskirts which was very unexpected. Their reputation also got beefed up due to the word-of-mouth advertising and from people who would often see their catering truck pass by. Now they rarely experience slow days as their profits are always on or above optimal levels.