Money-Saving Ideas for Running a Restaurant
Difficult economic times often hurt the restaurant industry, increasing food costs and decreasing the number of customers through the door. A push to save money in the operation of your business allows you to continue offering customers a pleasant dining experience while increasing your profits. The cost-cutting may also help you keep your menu prices down to appeal to thrifty diners without hurting your bottom line.
PlanMagic Restaurant Plan
If supplies are eating up a large portion of your budget, consider changes to your buying routine. Check with your vendors to determine if you can consolidate to only one or two vendors for all of your supplies. Streamlining the buying process saves on transportation costs. Another option is to place larger orders less frequently. The larger orders may qualify you for volume buying discounts. The fewer deliveries also mean less time accepting and putting away orders to reduce your staffing costs.
Saving on Equipment
The heavy reliance on large kitchen equipment such as steamers, grills, ovens and fryers makes a restaurant's utility bills a large portion of the budget. Replacing outdated kitchen appliances with energy-efficient models helps you save money on utility bills. Maintain your ventilation system to keep the kitchen more comfortable so you can spend less on air conditioning. Minimize the number of appliances you use at once. When possible, use one or two appliances for the majority of the work. Plan preparation techniques such as baking bread and pastries so you can use the oven for a short period of time to complete all of the day's baking.
The food you offer at your restaurant plays a role in how profitable you are. If a dish involves lots of expensive ingredients and takes a long time to prepare, you won't make much money on it. Evaluate the cost and preparation time of each dish to determine if it's cost effective. If not, look for ways to modify the dish without sacrificing flavor to make it more profitable. Determine if any ingredients can be cut or if you can replace some ingredients with something more affordable. If a recipe can't be adapted to make more of a profit, consider cutting it from the menu.
Your menu gives you a chance to encourage customers to choose dishes that will make you the most money. For each dish that you offer, calculate the costs to make it. Compare this number to the cost you charge the customers. Identify the meals that make you the greatest profit. Often these won't be the most expensive items on the menu because those dishes usually have more expensive ingredients. Use your menu to highlight the dishes that give you the most profit. Place those items prominently in the menu, while placing the less profitable items near the back of the menu.