It seems like expanding your restaurant’s hours would attract more business and help your bottom line, but that might not be the best move. Of course, you want your organic food to get to as many customers as possible, but sometimes expanding your hours isn’t the best way to do that. Here are some things that you should think about before deciding to close later or open up earlier.
Think About Your Specialties
What are your most popular dishes? What kinds of food are you best at cooking and serving to customers? Think hard about that before you decide to expand your hours. If your specialties aren’t well suited to breakfast or late-night dining, you may not benefit too much from opening earlier or closing later. Worse yet, if you try to change your menu to accommodate those crowds, you could end up diluting what makes your restaurant special.
Consider Your Location
Do a lot of people drive past your restaurant on the way to work in the morning? If you have meals that would work on the go, opening for breakfast could help you attract hungry commuters. Are you in a college town? That means a lot of young customers, who could be night owls. You might want to consider staying open later. Knowing your location and market well can help you figure out just how beneficial it would be to expand your hours.
Know Local Laws
There might be state and local laws that govern how late you can operate when you can serve alcohol, and when employees under the age of 18 are eligible to work. Consider all of these regulations and make sure that they would not be too onerous if you decided to expand your hours.
Think About Seasonal Trends
You may end up realizing that staying open late or opening up early could be beneficial, but only sometimes. Are you busier in certain seasons or does the clientele differ depending on the time of year? Carefully evaluate when certain types of customers come in and then see if expanding your hours could better serve that crowd. For example, does your bar cater to fans of a particular sport or other seasonal activity? You might be better off expanding hours in this “busy” season while keeping your hours the same at other times of the year.
Don’t Rush Anything
If you do decide to change your hours, don’t rush into anything. If you stay open later and don’t see a change in business activity after a week, do not go back on the change right away. It may take some time for word of mouth to spread, and giving your new breakfast hours or late night hours a little while to catch on could end up paying off.
Tips Organic Restaurant Owners Can Depend On
If you want to learn more about how to attract customers to your healthy restaurant, we can help. Visit the Organic Restaurants blog for more ideas about running an establishment that serves organic food and healthy dishes.