The pandemic hit the food and beverage industry the hardest. Even with the reopening, consumer spending in the industry hasn’t picked up.

According to ONS UK, customer spending is less than 70% of the pre-pandemic levels.

The sector is experiencing rapid adaptation and adjustments to increase revenue. Some are expanding their delivery options, kerbside and click & collect services to boost sales and encourage customers to dine-in or order.

Challenges Facing the F&B Industry in the New Normal

The pandemic changed people’s way of life, from shopping to travelling and dining experiences. Consumer attitudes have also evolved significantly from a reduction of in-dining to an increase in take-outs and preference for outdoor dining. Working from home reduces foot traffic in city centres, and f&b businesses cannot rely on employees to visit the premises for breakfast or lunch.

Sit-down dining is dwindling, with seated dinners in UK restaurants at 32% in early 2022. This was expected since consumers preferred eating on the go even before the pandemic. Shared f&b services also face reduced revenue since more people are concerned with cleanliness. Hence, they avoid buffets and beverage dispensers.

4 Tips on How Restaurants Can Thrive In The Next Normal

Many businesses in the hospitality industry are juggling between providing a great user experience and being COVID-safe. Some of the tips for surviving in the new normal include:

1. Limit contact using technology

Social-distancing behaviours have become mainstream even post-pandemic, leading to a shift to off-premise dining. For instance, customers avoid self-service buffets and beverage dispensers due to contact. Introducing automated dispensers and improving food safety in buffets can boost your sales.

Introducing a restaurant POS system for online ordering and payments promotes a safe dine-in experience. Research shows that 43% of customers rely on technology to pay for food and drinks, and 40% feel safe in hospitality venues using mobile tech. Having a point of sale software can help your business survive.

2. Leverage online ordering

The online ordering market grew by 13% during the pandemic since dine-in halted. In the new normal, f&b businesses need a strong ordering platform. Investing in an omnichannel point of sale system improves the streamlining of online orders.

A POS ensures customers’ orders are processed efficiently to minimise problems arising from the influx of orders. The best point of sale software improves the online purchasing experience while maximising staff efficiency.

3. Third-party delivery integration

Delivery apps like UberEats have been gaining traction for the past five years, recording revenue increments of over 204%. During the pandemic, their popularity skyrocketed.

Your restaurant business could increase sales by 10 to 20 % by using third-party delivery apps compared to creating your app. You also increase the traffic to your f&b business by handling orders precisely and providing the best meals.

4. Leverage your POS data

Aside from optimising your restaurant’s ordering and payment system, the right POS is a treasure trove for analytics. Since generating detailed analytics takes time, a data-driven restaurant POS system can provide valuable information on your customers.

For instance, you get data on your restaurant’s best-selling menu items, which you can leverage to increase growth.

Wrapping up

There’s no doubt that the hospitality industry has a lot of work to do in order to make up for lost time. However, with these tips and the right tools, restaurants can thrive in the next normal and enter a new era of prosperity and innovation.

If you are searching for a POS system for your f&b, we are available to assist. Call us at 1800 778 340, or email [email protected] to explore your restaurant’s needs.