Even as we move beyond the initial wave of the Coronavirus pandemic, the hospitality industry is going to face some very difficult times. Social distancing, consumer confidence, new ways of working and a challenging economic recession are all on the horizon.
To try and adapt to the new normal, trading safely within government guidelines for the benefit of both employees and customers, there are a number of steps that hospitality businesses can take to improve their chances of success in the long term.
Offering delivery and collection. Options include partnering with key industry platforms including JustEat and Deliveroo, and updating your website and social media channels to sell directly to your customer base. Steps like these require minimum upfront investment that could instantly add a new revenue stream to your business.
Appealing to a customer base that you didn’t tap into in the past. This is especially important if you believe key parts of your customer base are unlikely to return in the near future. For example, if you are overly reliant on office workers for lunches and after work dinner and drinks, who can you appeal to locally so that you can replace a customer base that many no longer exist?
Reviewing your prices to accurately reflect your costs in a post Covid-19 world. It may not seem obvious at first, but your fixed costs are going to stay the same, and your staff costs may even increase, especially with minimum wage going up during the lockdown. If you’re potentially going to be losing at least half of your capacity due to social distancing, reviewing your menu prices to accurately reflect your costs may become a necessity.
There are no easy answers to keeping a business afloat during and after the initial wave of the pandemic, but by adapting to the new normal now, the hospitality industry will make it through to the greener pastures that lie ahead.