During normal years, a new restaurant in business is 40% likely to make it. Yikes!  That’s a startling statistic!  

And we can all agree, this has not been a normal year.  

But someway, somehow, restaurants have found opportunity amidst a crisis. For most, this was not an easy feat. Many restaurants could not pivot as quickly or successfully as others. However, restaurant and bar owners are by nature, entrepreneurial people – so they have found ways to maximize the struggle of the pandemic. 

Industry experts express that restaurants – in whatever form or fashion, are forever. 

“The restaurant business will survive. Just with everything else that goes through change, there’s always going to be amendments. People are ready to miss the things they love about dining out, and everyone is going to want to go back to how it used to be.” Tavel Bristol-Joseph, restaurateur

Within this new wave of what it means to be, operate, and own a restaurant – the focus will undoubtedly shift. Restaurateurs will come out stronger from this crisis by focusing on the sustainability of operations, leaning into delivery, take-home, curbside pick-up, and contactless payment. It’s no surprise that the adoption of technology is what kept many restaurants afloat during the pandemic, and the acceleration of the adoption even saved countless restaurants. 

Based on the necessity and a will to survive, restaurants in every sector have pivoted to meet customers’ needs, and for that – they will come out stronger. 

Here are a few ways in they will, in fact, be stronger in the long run: 

By Updating Their Marketing Strategy: 

Local restaurants finally made the management of local marketing a priority. Restaurants have branded their marketing via social media outlets to communicate with their customers and guests during the pandemic. Faithful customers are regularly checking social media platforms for updates, specials, delivery options, online ordering, etc. 

Restaurants that have adopted this, allows for the customers who live, work, or drive by your restaurant to have easier access to their operating methods during the pandemic.  Restaurants that got a hand in updating their Google My Business account and local listings were able to boost customer relations and provide necessary information to the public. 

This practice will not be going away anytime soon! 

By Keeping the Cleanliness Heightened: 

Cleanliness was taken to a new standard in 2020. The restaurants that enforced constant disinfecting of communal surfaces, such as counters, door handles, tables, chairs, condiment containers, etc – will be in a much better place as this level of sanitation will be expected moving forward. The ways in which the food was handled and prepared will also serve restaurant owners well. 

By Keeping Morale High: 

The once old and proud culture that has dominated restaurants could no longer exist during the pandemic.  The work environment needed to shift to be more empathetic and communal, working towards a greater good!  Restaurants that have adopted a more ‘team’ based environment will thrive as we move further into 2021. 

By Making the Most of their Space: 

Restaurants that make the most of their space will come out stronger in the long run.  This means covered patios, open-air spaces, and shrinking seating capacity.  Right now, customers feel more comfortable with open-air spaces from restaurants. This will certainly help, even despite temperature changes. 

In a post-COVID world, many of the innovations we experienced that are helping restaurants endure the pandemic, will likely stick around.  That’s why it is imperative for restaurants to come together, be innovative, and adopt practices that will propel them NOW and in the future! 

Cheers to all the restaurants that are enduring these great challenges with an entrepreneurial spirit, hard work, and adaptability!