Even if money seems to be flowing, it can be difficult to run a profitable restaurant for a prolonged time. Unforeseen developments can occur, such as the pandemic that has taken the world by surprise in 2020. Restaurants will need to cut corners wherever possible to lower their overhead, which may include making some subtle changes to their menu.
Some may need to make some tweaks to their services and reduce their appliance volume orders to make ends meet. Here, we will look into some ideas that can help you save money on your restaurant, such as purchasing a used commercial freezer, and other such appliances.
Save on Equipment
Restaurant utilities should be a top priority, so a larger portion of your budget should be spent. Buying used equipment whenever possible can pay great dividends in the long run, provided you buy used equipment, such as a used commercial freezer, from a reputable and trustworthy vendor.
Utility bills are also an area that you need to focus on, as fryers, ovens, grills, steamers, and other such kitchen appliances can quickly eat into your budget. Any antiquated devices should be replaced as soon as possible with newer, more energy-efficient models.
Again, the items do not have to be purchased new, but they should be in excellent working condition if they are purchased second-hand, allowing you to enjoy both cost-savings and reliable performance.
Your ventilation system should also be carefully maintained, as doing so will reduce the need for air conditioning. In addition, the number of appliances that you use should be reduced whenever possible.
For example, you can try using fewer appliances to perform the same amount of work in your kitchen. If you own a bakery or delicatessen, then you can practice preparation techniques that allow you to use your oven for a short duration to complete all of your baking in one go.
The type, age, and condition of the equipment should also be top of mind, as poor quality can lead to additional costs in the form of repairs and replacement parts. For instance, there are many commercial refrigerators, including blast coolers, that cool food very quickly and chilled bakery-display cases.
Regardless of age, the unit should be lightly used as possible, as you want a device that will last for years to come. If in doubt, test the unit thoroughly, especially if it has been inactive for some time. You should also inspect for any defects that can lower the efficiency of the freezer or refrigerator, such as cracks or tears, that can cause substantial energy loss.
Rearrange Your Menu
If you need to save money, then you can do so by simply reformatting your menu. Try to format your menu to highlight food items and beverages with a higher profit margin.
By doing so, your customers’ attention will be focused on the dishes that yield the highest profit margins for your establishment. Servers can also help you save money if you ask them to promote cheaper items on the menu while serving customers.
As mentioned above, you will likely need to make some changes to your menu to increase profits. For instance, a dish that uses many rich, exotic, and rare ingredients, such as saffron and caviar, will drastically reduce your profits in most cases.
Go over every menu item to determine its cost to you while also evaluating prep time to gauge if the item is cost-effective. Any item found not to be cost-effective should be eliminated from the menu, at least until things pick up.
Certain foods will simply not be palatable if certain ingredients are removed, so you may need your best chef skills to keep the dishes delicious while also removing certain expensive elements to increase profits. Try to find cheaper substitutes that will not comprise the taste of the dish, as a cheap dish that does not sell will yield zero profit.
If your supplies are taking a large chunk out of your budget, you may need to make a few modifications to your purchasing routine. For example, you can check-in with your vendors to determine if it is possible to only have one vendor for all of your supplies to reduce costs and streamline the process.
Streamlining the process will also save you quite a bit of transportation expenditures. Yet another option is to cut back on large orders whenever possible. This is because opting for larger orders may qualify your business for buying discounts determined by volume.
You can also make fewer large orders, and cutting back on orders will also reduce the number of deliveries that need to be made. You will save even more time and money, as your staff won’t need to spend as much time accepting and putting away supplies.
Saving Money in a Restaurant is Tough
By saving money, you can pass on the savings to your patrons by providing them with fresh and delicious dishes that will entice them to come back for more. Your staff will also be happier; your customers will be happier, and, as your restaurant grows, you can use some of the profits that you make to hire more staff to expand your business.
You can add new, never-before-seen items to your menu to keep customers interested and perhaps even attract new customers in the process.