7 Marketing Metrics Every Restaurant Owner Should Know

Restaurant Marketing

7 Marketing Metrics Every Restaurant Owner Should Know

Restaurant Marketing


At $603 billion a year in revenue, and close to 2.3 percent annual growth, the restaurant industry is booming, according to the market research report Global Fast Food Restaurants, released in March by IBISWorld. Make no bones about it, it’s an exceptional time to be a restaurateur.

With that said, however, no growing industry comes without its fair share of challenges — one of which of course is stiff competition. With more people dining out more frequently, there’s been a serious increase in restaurants popping up seemingly out of nowhere, eager to fuel this growing trend. The only way to stay on top of your game is to adopt digital restaurant marketing.

If your business is one of them, you know that it’s important to stay ahead of the curve: That way, you can continue to serve up the dishes you love, to the people who love them. To help you do that, here is a list of some important metrics and trends for you to keep a close eye on.

1. “Instagram-worthy” fare: food so pretty, customers will want to take a picture

Chances are, you’ve seen them: posts on Instagram, the social media platform that boasts on average half a billion users on a monthly basis.

Well, it just so happens that Instagram is helping the restaurant industry make a massive amount of money. Shake Shack, the burger place, practically made its name on social media. It exploded onto the scene, driving engagement via great photos and skillful commentary.

Goldman Sachs analysts explain that Shake Shack is 100 times more successful on Instagram than McDonalds, which seems extraordinary because Shake Shack has 63 U.S. locations, to McDonald’s 36,000!

This seems largely due to Shake Shack’s backing up the quality of its fare: quality in its ingredients and quality in its social media interactions.

Instagram’s heavy influence on restaurants’ success, in fact, has motivated many to take an “Instagram-worthy” approach to food creation — plating food that doesn’t just taste great, but looks great too.

So, get in on this trend: Encourage your patrons to take plenty of pictures and hit the “follow” button on Instagram.

2. Increasingly focused restaurants

In previous years, restaurants made a serious effort to be everything to everyone, and that worked. But today, people’s tastes are rapidly evolving, and a plate of cheeseburger and fries . . . just isn’t cutting it. Customers want to experience ethnically diverse foods, healthy foods, experimental cuisines — you name it.

This is why restaurants are getting more and more focused, creating specialty foods that cater to a select few people’s interest.

So, in 2017, recognize that it’s better to create a menu that offers super spicy Thai food than one that serves BBQ, pizza and cheeseburgers.

3. “Sorry, we don’t take reservations.”

It’s a phrase nobody likes to hear when calling into a hot spot, in hopes of reserving a table. So, why are restaurants all over the world instituting a “No reservation” policy? Because people aren’t showing up.

According to OpenTable, the world’s leading provider of online restaurant reservations: “The no-show rate in the U.S. is approximately 20 percent lower than the no-show rate for diners who book via phone.”

Recognize that many restaurants are now moving to a first-come, first-served policy and reaping rewards because of it. Chances are, if customers show up at your restaurant and are faced with a 20-minute wait, they’re going to stick around and have a drink.

4. Restaurants on wheels

Back in 2015, as reported by IBIS World, the food truck industry cashed in at $1.2 billion in revenue, with a total increase of 12.4 percent over the previous five years; it’s been going through the roof ever since.

Restaurants with stand-alone locations are starting to make the jump to adding a food truck that’s on the go at all times (though, in some cities, food trucks are less popular).

With that said, however, even if the mobile food industry is booming in your area, you may want to think about whether it’s smart to load up a truck and start rolling.

5. Rewards for regulars — treating them like royalty

More and more restaurants are implementing loyalty programs in hopes of keeping their regulars coming back. Restaurants’ current customers spend a massive 67 percent more than new customers. So, it goes without saying that those loyal customers are the real fuel restaurants need.

The simplest way to implement a customer loyalty program? With a punch card. Restaurants, though, are getting innovative and increasingly moving to digital customer loyalty programs. FiveStars is an example of a digital customer loyalty app that quite a few restaurants have adopted.

No loyalty program at your restaurant? Time to think about one.

6. An enhanced dining experience through interior design

Instagram highlights the importance of taking photos in restaurants. InfoTrends‘ most recent worldwide image capture forecasts that consumers will take 1.1 trillion photos worldwide in 2016 and that number will grow to 1.2 trillion photos in 2017. The compound annual growth rate (CAGR) from 2016 to 2017 will be 9 percent.

Importantly, “photos” goes beyond food. It’s become more and more important for restaurants to create experiences where customers want to take pictures. While food is the biggest issue, of course, the interior design and aesthetic and atmosphere at your restaurant’s atmosphere also count.

7. Where the money is: that email list

If you’ve previously been skeptical about email as a tool for promoting your restaurant, here are a few statistics to change your mind:

Before the digital age, running a successful business was all about location, location, location. But today, businesses have the opportunity to get in touch with anyone anywhere, as long as they have an email address.

Consider: If 1,000 of your customers decided to share their email address while dining at your restaurant, and even just 5 percent paid you a visit every time you sent out an email, that would be 50 tables you could count on. Not a bad ROI for an email, right?

So, build up your email list, and see the customers swarm.

How to utilize these metrics and trends

If your restaurant is alive and thriving, it’s a safe bet that your food is tasty. But, today, tasty food is not enough. In order for a restaurant to remain profitable in 2017, its owner has to commit to ramping up his or her marketing — whether that be with Instagram, a new interior design, a food truck, an email list or a new loyalty program.

There is no wrong answer here (as long as you are utilizing one or more of the metrics/trends above). The only wrong answer? Choosing to do nothing at all.


On – 20 Jul, 2017 By Nital Shah

How To Open A New Restaurant – Part 3

How To Open A New Restaurant – Part 3

Running a restaurant is not a one man show, it requires the efforts of an entire team. Similarly, the food menu is the main driving force in getting customers to your restaurant and to make sure they want to pay for the quality that they receive.

And if you are building a brand, then you can’t ignore social media. After all, it is the ultimate platform for getting the word out in this fast paced world. 80% of people read about a restaurant online before their first visit.

So even if you have a strong business plan and a fantastic location or hold necessary licenses and permits to run the restaurant or make use of the best technology, everything falls flat without the right employees, food menu and promotional tactics.

Your staff matters, so choose well

Acquiring new employees is an exciting process. Look up job portals, career sites and referrals to get the most suitable talent onboard. Did you know that the turnover rate at restaurants is as high as 62%? This poses as a serious loss of time and money for any business, so be creative while hiring.

Websites such as Indeed.com, Craigslist, LinkedIn and even Facebook can help you spread the word, if not reach out to the correct people. When you are posting about the vacancies online, don’t be vague. Be as descriptive as possible.

Even if you receive less number of applications, the quality will be high and save you much time. At the initial stage of hiring, you must focus on hiring a head chef, assisting cooks, a restaurant manager, a host, waiters and a bartender (if necessary).

The staff size entirely depends on the “size” and “concept” of your venture. So estimate properly.

There has to be a “second-in-command”

Let’s face it: you can’t do everything on your own. You need to have someone to fall back on during emergencies. Therefore, identify one person from the lot that can take charge confidently in your absence.

If you have a business partner, a restaurant consultant or a close family member who has invested in your venture, then the problem is sorted. Otherwise, choose a person from the newly hired group. See who is genuinely excited to be a part of the team. Check their personal and professional backgrounds.

If you wish to take a leadership test, go ahead. You are the boss. The onus of making a good or bad hire will ultimately fall on you. Therefore, erase all doubts and take your time to select the right person for this “important” job!

In the end, it’s all about food


It is and the sooner you and your head chef understand this, the better it is for the business. Therefore, strategize menu offerings with him or her. Depending on the type of restaurant you own, list down the food items and beverages that will go best with it.

For instance: if you are running a PAN Asian eatery, how many kinds of cuisines do you plan to serve? Thai, Japanese, Chinese, Korean? Be specific about the many avenues you plan to take. If your head chef is a master of them all, it’s fine.

But if he or she is not comfortable about meeting such varied food demands, then focus on one cuisine. 55% of chefs will make efforts to adjust dishes to be more healthy. Make your restaurant famous for that. In addition to this, involve your staff to try out and vote for different dishes.

This way, you can keep those items that were well received and chuck those that needed some work. Once this is done, get a menu designed that is in sync with your restaurant’s ambiance. Be competitive while finalizing the F&B prices.

Promote, promote and promote

Don’t forget to let everyone know that you are here and how! Before the big opening, make a huge splash on the digital platform. 75% of all online customers use social media regularly. Invite your potential clientele via this channel. Lure them with a complimentary bottle of wine, if they attend the party.

Share a nicely written press release, throw in a couple of social posts and even run a digital campaign before you finally let the cat out of the bag. You can take help of any budding digital marketing agency here to help you with all promotion-related efforts.

Don’t forget to send an invite to journalists and fellow restaurateurs as well. The more people turn up, the more they will talk about your restaurant. Don’t worry. It will be all good. Just keep working hard and focus on quality deliverables.

All the best!

How To Open A New Restaurant – Part 2

How To Open A New Restaurant – Part 2

In the last article, we learnt about the basics of starting a restaurant: vision, business plan and location. Once these three steps are completed, you know where you stand presently and how you want to achieve your business goals.

65% of restaurants are not protected if there is an interruption in daily operations. And these obstacles can be anything – government interference, angry customers, zero bank balance, etc.

While nothing can be done about the second point until you start running a restaurant, first and second points can be totally taken care of.

On the other hand, quite interestingly, the hottest technology trends in this business include tablet computers (27%), smartphone apps (25%) and mobile/wireless/pay-at-the-table (19%).

It is a fact: to do your job better, you need to make use of state-of-the-art software that keeps all your payments and POS challenges at bay.

To make sure your restaurant business has a smooth start, you must strengthen the foundation in three key areas: accounts, legalities and technology.

Get your basic accounting and financing in place

The customer-servicing side of the business is exciting. You are bound to have a lot of fun fixing special menus, sorting logistics and managing your staff. There is no doubt about that!

However, you also have to spend a considerable amount of time analyzing your ledger, submitting taxes and doing other accounting tasks.

This is the reason why you must learn the basics of restaurant finances so that you can spend your money wisely. As a restaurant owner, you need to look into every possible expenditure: employees, furniture, liquor, food delivery, laundry, linen, general repairs, etc.

Besides, your budget should also keep aside a certain amount of money to tackle emergencies in future. Therefore, when you are starting off, be sure to be extremely realistic about how much you can “actually” spend.

Please remember that it will take you a couple of months (or maybe a year) to break even.

Once your venture has taken off, here are 5 restaurant metrics you should track:

  • Cost of goods sold (COGS) = Beginning Inventory + Purchased Inventory – Final Inventory
  • Prime cost = Labor + COGS
  • Food cost percentage = Food cost / Total sales
  • Gross profit = Total sales – COGS
  • Employee turnover rate = Lost employees / Average number of employees

Research and apply to legal licenses and permits

You have an idea to grow, a business plan to execute, a location to call “your restaurant” and a budget in control. So what is the next step? To get all legal formalities done before it is too late.

The most frustrating part of the process is to acquire the right permits and licenses. However, to make your business official, you have to go through tons of legal procedures, haggle with the local government officials and most importantly, wait before your restaurant can be termed “legal”.

Since the requirement of every local government is different, make sure you check out their website and note down the requirements beforehand. The sooner you start with the registration process, the better it is for you.

Here is a list of most common restaurant licenses and permits:

  1. Business license: This is required to open and operate your business. To find the application, google “[your state] restaurant business license”.

Example: New Jersey Restaurant Business License

  1. Employee Identification Number (EIN): This is a tax ID number which is issued by the IRS. Since only one is issued per day, apply ASAP.
  1. Certificate of occupancy: This is to state that the building has been properly constructed and maintained. Google “[your city] certificate of occupancy to download the application.
  1. Food service license: This is issued by city or county health departments that certifies that your business is in compliance with all food service safety regulations. To get the application, google “[your city] food service license.”

Get the latest technology to operate

79% of customers believe that technology increases convenience. 70% of themthink that technology speeds up restaurant services. Therefore, excite your customer base with top notch technology!

Invest in a POS system that helps you measure the total sales, number of daily/weekly/monthly customer visits and day-by-day sales performance of your restaurant business.

Luckily, Onesto Payments can take care of all your payments and POS challenges. With absolutely no risk of being cheated on by technology providers, this software equips small businesses with the best of the best technology in hand,

It also shares knowledgeable information such as which menu item is bringing your customers back, which server is generating the most revenue, which marketing efforts are working for you and what your customers are saying on social media.

While you get busy calling Onesto Payments @ 201-546-5555 or visiting theirwebsite for a free POS consultation, let us remind you that the last part of this series is still left.

Till then, good luck!

How To Open A New Restaurant – Part 1

How To Open A New Restaurant – Part 1

According to National Restaurant Association in the USA, 1 million restaurant locations are currently competing for customer attention. It’s because of this huge number that there is a strong need for new restaurants to carve a niche for themselves in the market.

Despite the tough competition, more and more people are dreaming of owning an eatery of their own. Yes, opening a new restaurant is a risky business venture. But which profession is not? Moreover, with smart planning and rational financing options, it is possible to turn this dream into a reality.

If you are passionate enough to grow your restaurant idea and learn the ropes of the game, the key is to start with the basics:

What’s so different about your restaurant?

It is good to have faith in your idea. But being overly confident about it is sheer foolishness. Before you decide the concept, conduct a thorough market research. See what is trending, what did not work in the past and what you think can work in the future.

Learn customer preferences and demands. Once you are done with this, decide the restaurant concept. Is it going to be fine dining or a quick service establishment? Are you going to focus on fast food or a specific cuisine?

What is the restaurant’s serving style going to be like? It is going to a self-service? A buffet? Consider the ambience of the place. Furniture, lighting, glass and dishware, linen, music and server’s uniform are some of the things you must have a clear picture on.

Most importantly, how are you going to pitch the restaurant to consumers, investors and potential employers? Pull out pictures from décor & lifestyle magazines and online portals of furniture, cloth swatches, decorations, lights and food items. Place them aesthetically in the mood board.


Now try writing one line about the concept. If you are able to write more than that, it means you do have a clarity of what you want to accomplish in the coming months. Share the draft of the pitch with your colleague or family. Note their feedback and make improvements thereon.

What’s your business plan?

The thought of having to curate a plan to fund your business through investors can easily drop you at your wit’s end, isn’t it? It is because of this “fear factor” that lots of business owners prolong the process of writing business plans.

However, if you want to grow your idea, you need funding and that is not possible until you reach out to investors and impress them with your business plan! Many restaurant owners make the mistake of avoiding this path altogether.

Don’t be like them. In fact, having a business plan will help you get an idea on more technical aspects such licensing, legal and construction. A business plan is your roadmap to success and you must never undermine its importance.


Draft a plan and then request your colleagues or family members to go through it. Re-write and re-discuss it as many times as possible. It is always good to have your flaws pointed out by people who want the best for you, rather than by those who are waiting to pull you down.

So make sure your business plan covers all the necessary information before the main pitch. Don’t hesitate to put all your efforts.

To know about making business plans in detail, check out this blog post.

What’s your restaurant’s location?

This is an exciting phase because everything you have planned for till now is going to be executed here. Choosing the right location for your restaurant is critical. Before you start scouting locations, you must do extensive research on demographics, competition, rent costs, visibility and history.

Based on your findings, narrow down a few locations you think will fit. You can even connect with a realtor to help you further. Remember to focus on what the space can become rather than what it looks like in its present state.

Keep the following points in mind:

  • Target market and ideal customer profile
  • Market conditions, including foot traffic and nearby areas of interest
  • Other eateries near the location – Who poses competition?
  • Size of the place – It should be spacious!
  • Previous tenants – Who occupied the space in the past? Why did they leave?

Don’t forget to choose a location that seamlessly aligns itself with your restaurant’s vision and aesthetics. The place and neighboring area should be neat and clean. You must also check out the parking facility, if available in the area. Everything about the place should be convenient and not pose as obstacles in the future.

Now that we have covered the basics, next step is to look into the legalities of setting up the restaurant. But we will cover that in the next article.

Stay tuned!

Top 7 Must-Haves For Restaurant Managers

Top 7 Must-Haves For Restaurant Managers

Being a restaurant owner is a lot of work. From managing employees and checking in on the kitchen from time-to-time to fine-tuning menus, ordering inventory and analyzing restaurant sales – the onus of getting everything and anything done falls on you.

To be the super businessperson you are, you need a system that simplifies all your every-day tasks and enables you to focus on core competencies of the business. Here is a list of management must-haves to streamline your restaurant processes considerably and rev up your sales:

1. Paytronix

In this digital age, everyone’s on the lookout for instant gratification. And in the business like this, free food means a lot to people! Therefore, you can’t expect your guests to be happy with just a coupon or a punch card. They need more than that and this is where Paytronix comes into the picture.

The tool drives incremental sales by creating guest loyalty. So what does it exactly do? It’s an engagement platform that curates intuitive reward programs, handles the guest email management system and makes gift cards accessible to the customers.

Although available for Android and Apple, the pricing of Paytronix varies.

2. BlueCart

A free and simple tool, BlueCart makes inventory ordering simple. Restaurateurs can actually place all their orders to the complete list of suppliers in just one click, enabling the latter to manage all orders and accounts from one platform.


You can conveniently avoid using excel sheets and spending extra hours in the back office dedicated to sorting through binders. With BlueCart, you can easily connect with all your suppliers at the same time and make your life a little less hectic.

BlueCart is available for Android and Apple.

3. Onesto Payments

An effective way to develop your restaurant’s payment strategy is throughOnesto Payments. It offers POS and financial solutions to help you measure total sales, average sales, number of visits, day-by-day sales performance of your restaurant business among other things.

This tool is apt for kinds of retail formats. It ensures that the customers remain free from the risk of being cheated by technology providers during payments. With Onesto Payments, you can also find out what your guests are saying about your restaurant on social media.

Want to know more? Give a call @ 201-546-5555 or head to OnestoPayments.comfor a free POS consultation right now!

4. Expensify

Calculating restaurant expense reports is a challenging task and requires lots of time and energy from your side. Thanks to Expensify, you can capture receipts, track business travel and create expense reports quickly and easily.

All you have to do is take a picture of your receipt, select the report in which the expense goes to and you are good to go! The technology in the tool will reach the receipt and create the expense – on its own- and eliminate any manual entry made.


You can even import credit card transactions and create expense reports on-the-fly. Another feature of Expensify is that it supports worldwide currencies. It’s tree and available for both Android and Apple.

5. Crunch Time

Want a robust back office system for your restaurant, look no further. CrunchTime is the right solution for you. It manages food cost, inventory and labor and also takes care of dashboards and alerts.

Basically, CrunchTime gives you access to complete functionality as an all-in-one system. The tool integrates with your restaurant’s POS data, so that you can obtain in-depth insights from your sales. It is available for Android and Apple, but comes at a cost.

6. Restaurateur

Download this app if you have plans to sketch out the entire strategy for you restaurant – especially the “finance” bit. For instance, you can enter the size of the space, price per space unit, average check amount, monthly expenses, cost ratios, etc. in the app.


Restaurateur will quickly create a Profit & Loss statement for you and even calculate the breakeven in sales and checks. The app also sends alerts when the ratio falls outside the industry guidelines. If you are obsessed with numbers, this app is apt for you!

Restaurateur is only available for Apple and it is free.

7. KeyIngredient

The key to a successful restaurant is its ability to offer delicious yet trending cuisines. KeyIngredient is a smart app for saving food recipes and emptying the counter space in the kitchen by going paper-free.

You can ask the chefs and their assistants to organize their recipes conveniently into different “cookbooks” on the free app itself and then share them online at any time! They can also create a grocery list based on the items they require to make a specific recipe.

KeyIngredient is available for Android and Apple.

Go ahead: Download an app or purchase a tool you think will take care of the nitty-gritties of your restaurant business. With the right choice, you can make your restaurant a more profitable initiative and keep your guests happy and satisfied.

Bon appétit!

6 Things To Consider When Scouting Locations for Your Pop-Up Shop

6 Things To Consider When Scouting Locations for Your Pop-Up Shop

The concept of pop-up shops or temporary retail started way back in the 1990s in four major metropolitan cities of the world – London, New York, Los Angeles and Tokyo. These retail spaces, that were set up for not more than 3 months, were aimed at selling merchandise of all kinds.

That’s right!

From tech gadgets and fashion accessories to food and art – just about every consumer product was sold via these unique, short-term stores. Even today, the pop-up retail format is quite popular, selling a variety of commodities – despite the digitization of most businesses.


This is due to a number of reasons:

However, creating an awesome pop-up shop experience is a challenge! And, its success relies heavily on the area where it is set up.

A retail space should be selected on the basis of what the brand deems as most important. Here are a few things you must consider:

1. Potential Location

In the last two decades, the pop-up scene has seen big-brands, small businesses and even independent artists set up their stores. But, how do they pick a location? Firstly, they select those areas that receive high-volume foot-traffic.

Secondly, they skim through the neighbouring shops to gauge the competition they might get. In an ideal situation, other retail shops must align themselves with similar values and aesthetic as the brand – but at the same time, be different enough not to attract competition.

Lastly, they also conduct a recce of the areas in the vicinity to learn about the upcoming events that can benefit them once their shop is up and running.

2. Cleanliness Of The Area

No one likes to shop from a place that is unclean. While retail space owners ensure that the interiors of the shop be spic ‘n’ span upon the arrival of the customers, they often forget about the exteriors.

No, no one expects them to clean every spot of the sidewalk every day – but it is expected of them to make sure that it does get cleaned before the customers start pouring in. Whether the task involves binning the trash bag or wiping every smudge off of the windows of the place – pop-up shop owners must assume responsibility of maintaining cleanliness.

3. Entrance Sign

Whether the pop-up shop is located in an ordinary building with a small entrance sign or in a grand building with a bold signage – both have their pros and cons. Customers may associate the pop-up shop to the brand more organically if the signage of the building is not visible.

However, when the pop-up shop is situated in an established building, the brand may go unnoticed by the customers because of the grandness of the edifice or its large signage. The brand has to ensure that the intent of opening a pop-up shop is not diminished because of this.

4. Parking Facility

A shopping mall with a huge parking space will invariably attract more customers than a complex where there’s a parking crunch. If a parking area is near the pop-up shop, then that’s good. But if it is not, then creating accessibility is in the hands of the pop-up retail owner.

One way of doing so is by curating the shop somewhere near to the public transit routes such bus stations, cab stands or metro stations. With a proper strategy in place, the pop-up retailer can even advertise the route to reach the store to attract potential buyers.

5. Storage Space and Display

Since pop-up shops are small, it is a challenge to not only store inventory conveniently but also beautify the existing vacant space. Therefore, the store must either have a back room or a make-shift partition (with curtains), so that the short-term shop looks professional and uncluttered.

Moreover, it is necessary to manipulate lighting in a pop-up space to display merchandise stylishly. If the brand is more attune with a modern customer base, then bright lighting would work well. Similarly, it is wise to opt for softer lights for a brand that reflects a classic aesthetic.

6. Convenient Payment Channels

Shopping at a pop-up store is fun and thrifty. And so is making the purchase – provided the brands keep the transaction process simple and convenient. Today, almost all retail spaces have the option of paying by cash and/or debit or credit card.

Onesto Payments, for instance, offers solving payments and POS challenges for small businesses. This solution is apt for such retail formats as the customers are free from the risk of being cheated by technology providers.

A pop-up shop should ultimately unify with the brand’s personality – which is why it is impossible to take chances with the location or retail space. The shop must be functional to succeed from every aspect.

Looking to curate a pop-up shop and want the right payments solution for it? Call us @ 201-546-5555 or visit us at OnestoPayments.com for a free POS consultation right now!

How To Develop Your Restaurant Marketing Strategy

How To Develop Your Restaurant Marketing Strategy

Running a successful business depends on many aspects such as type of cuisines, location, rent and utilities. If your food is delicious, ambience is comfortable and staff members are courteous and helpful, then your business will thrive – regardless of your tough competitors. The key is to run the show the right way.

Did you know that 65% of your guests will find out about your eatery online? Yep! Today, the restaurant business has become so digitized that even making reservations online is easy. Secondly, customers have become more vocal about their views on restaurants thanks to multiple online platforms.

These small yet effective introductions have brought forward a need to alter the approach for effective restaurant marketing. Here’s how you can amp up your business’ strategy:

1. Listen To Your Customers

A successful business’ story begins and thrives on that. So, are you listening to your customers? Find out where your customers most commonly gather? Is it on a digital platform? If yes, which one? Do they read a certain type of newsletter, magazine or newspaper? Do they listen to a specific radio station? What exactly are they asking for from your restaurant?

Yes, these are a lot of questions. But you need to be able to answer them to be the best in your business. To find your answers and give your strategy a foundation, try to understand where your customers are coming from.

2. Curate A Blueprint

Once you have all the necessary data, use that knowledge to come up with a master strategy. This is a tough step as you need to know which areas of work you want to give more attention to. Is it social media? If yes, then which channels are you going to pick? Are the selected channels relevant to your business?

You also have to make sure that you have sufficient capital to alter your restaurant marketing strategy. Don’t move forward before sorting this out.

3. Share, But What?

Your strategy is set – which means you know where to go and what you want to say. But have you decided which particular form of content you will share? Trust us; you should have some idea about that!

Is it going to be visual content such as photos and videos on social media or discount offers in a local newspaper? Do you plan to hold an online photo contest soon? The point is that your customers want different things.

So you have to prepare yourself to switch up what you share based on the information you gathered via #01 step.

4. Share – This Is How!

Okay. Once you know what you have to share, the next step is to find out “how”. You can share your content through placing an advertisement in the newspaper. Pursuing your social media profiles aggressively is a must.

Revamp your menu. Strengthen the “Contact Us” section of your website to showcase yourself as an approachable business. Whether you choose the ground level or the digital space—you cannot move forward without preparation. So stay committed to your strategy.

5.  Engage With Your Customers

A successful way of bettering your marketing strategy is by connecting with the customers on a personal level. Talk to them when they visit your restaurant. Search for customers who may have checked in at your restaurant on social media or other channels such as FourSquare – and start a conversation with them.

Share positive restaurant reviews on social platforms and tag them. Be sincere in answering all queries and comments – good or bad. It is important for your restaurant to come across as a concerned service-providing business.

6. Keep Measuring Your Performance

Creating and executing a marketing strategy is not enough. You have to analyze your performance to know exactly where you are going wrong. For instance, take a note of simple points such as the number of new guests you met this week. It is more or less?

Measure the engagement level and act on the most successful initiatives. You must have a clear idea about what and why is something working for your business. The results will assist in tweaking the strategy, if required.

If you also want to get started on developing your restaurant’s marketing strategy, take help from Onesto Payments. The company offers POS and financial solutions to help you measure the total sales, average sale, visits, day-by-day sales performance of your restaurant business among other things.

Keeping customers happy and attracting new customers is tricky – but it is also essential to your eatery’s existence. So propel your business to the next level above competition with a strategy that focuses on your consumers!

Let us help you understand your business better. Contact us today at 201-546-5555 or at OnestoPayments.com!

How Cloud POS Can Save You And Your Customers Significant Time

How Cloud POS Can Save You And Your Customers Significant Time

Customers are the kings of the market. They are the people who generate demand for products. They want and expect the best of services in a short span of time. Naturally, all businesses strive hard to maintain the perfect balance between customer satisfaction and organizational growth.

However, there is one thing that is common for customers and business owners: Time.

As a busy, on-the-go business owner, you will agree that the most important thing for you is time optimization. Since it is the basis on which your business runs so seamlessly, why not save time specifically at the Point of Sale (POS)?

A good POS software can holistically improve your small business’ back-end system and shopping experience of the customers. Adding to this thought, here are 4 points you must keep in mind when picking a POS software for your business:

1. Choose an integrated cloud POS system

Most of the modern POS systems have  integrated Customer Relationship Management (CRM), social media marketing, financial management, Payroll management and inventory management built in.

These tools can solve basic queries such as which menu item is bringing repeat customers, which marketing efforts are yielding maximum results and which server is generating the most revenue to name a few. A fully-integrated POS system can do wonders for you.


2. Use a POS system that accepts all kinds of payments

As a small business owner, it is your responsibility to offer your customers a secure payment mode, involving cards and assure them that their credit card information is being handled in a secure environment.

Let us call the current times “the age of financial fluidity”. From credit/debit cards to Apple Pay, Android Pay, NFC and cash—payments are being done in various ways. Apple and Android pay have also seen a rise in recent times and are expected to grow significantly over the years.

Therefore, as a small business owner, you must choose a POS system that helps you accept payments in every form for the sake of customers’ convenience.

This is also feasible for your employees as they don’t have to swing back and forth—from a cash register to a credit/debit card reader—when the customers are paying.



3. Opt for a tablet-based POS system

Gone are the days when you had to settle for expensive and clunky POS systems like Micros, Aloha, Posiflex, etc. Unfortunately, those systems have not caught up with time and lack many of the basic features that newer tablet-based POS systems provide.

It is not possible for you or your employees to crunch numbers post office hours. This task is highly laborious and time-intensive. Using a cloud-based POS system will enable you to access POS data at any time of the day or night and from anywhere. This will help you manage your time better and gain insights about your business like never before!

4. Get a POS software that simplifies tax preparation

Keeping a tab on total sales, sales tax, expenses and other payments can be tedious. Use a POS software that can perform and save complex calculations for you. So the next time you pay your taxes, you will be sure of the fact that your income is being reported accurately.

Many cloud-based POS systems have the ability to sync automatically with QuickBooks and that saves the accountants significant time.

5. Train employees on the system

Do you want to piss off your customers while your employees try to figure out a way to accept a payment or input a discount on the machine? No, right?  Enable your employees to make the most of the technology by providing them an extensive training program. Many modern POS systems have a great video library that can help you train your employees.

6. Staff rotation

How can you think of running an effective business if you are not able to track peak periods or busy days? You can and must use your POS software to do all the required tracking for you so that you can hire extra hands accordingly.

7. Use table service option

Many newer POS systems have the option to add a “mobile” unit to the existing POS station. With tablet-based systems like Revel, ShopKeep and Talech, you can take orders at-the-table and pay at-the-table by default!

But if you have Clover POS, consider adding “Clover Mobile”, so you can expedite your orders and payments for dine-in customers and use the actual station for pick-up orders or deliveries.

Clover POS
Clover POS


Clover Mobile
Clover Mobile

Remember: There are many POS systems to choose from and all of them have their their own set of strengths and weaknesses. There are many features and functionalities that need to be considered before implementing any new system.

Let us help you choose the right solution for your business! Call us @ 201-546-5555 or visit us at OnestoPayments.com for a free POS consultation.

How to Use Negative Restaurant Reviews to Drive Growth And Revenue

How to Use Negative Restaurant Reviews to Drive Growth And Revenue

It is true that in the restaurant business, the importance of word-of-mouth can’t be underestimated. Whether it is through a feedback form or a small interaction with the restaurant manager, an honest customer review always helps in improving the organization’s services for continued growth.

negative restaurant reviews

In this digital time and age, restaurants rely heavily on online reviews. Today, it is the number of positive online customer reviews that drives the organization’s revenues. But what if the reviews are negative?

Here’s how you can use negative restaurant reviews to tap into potential business:

1. Instant response to feedback

Got a bad review? Don’t fret! Take immediate steps to respond. Be proactive in executing a response strategy while handling negative reviews. If possible, assign someone to respond to customer feedback on a daily basis.

When a restaurant is quick in responding, it shows a high level of dedication to the customer. The goal of “simply” responding to reviews is enough to develop customer loyalty. So, deal with such situations with sincerity.

Drop a friendly email. First, thank the customer for taking out time to review your restaurant. Then, apologize to him or her for the inconvenience caused. If you can reach out to your unhappy customers personally, there’s nothing like it!

Also, train your servers to ask for a feedback when the customers are paying the bill or having a meal. This will highlight the fact that you not only care about them but also are open to listening to customer suggestions and complaints.

2. Revise menu items

Improvisation is the key to success in the restaurant business. Online reviews can give you fresh ideas for menu items. Similarly, if one particular cuisine has been disliked by many, you can remove that from the menu altogether.

In fact, by doing so you will always retain an element of surprise for your customers—which in turn will drive your profits and thus assist in a sustainable restaurant business. So keep revising the menu to “surprise” and “delight” your customers!

Another interesting scheme you can apply here can include asking the customers (with negative reviews) about specific cuisines or beverages they would like to see on the menu. You can call for their opinion on those platforms where they have left a review about your restaurant itself (such as food search and discovery platforms, social media channels or restaurant website).

Once the customers start feeling they matter to your restaurant, your restaurant will start mattering to them. It’s that simple!

3. Offer incentives to customers with negative reviews

A smart marketing strategy is one which re-targets all the customers—including the ones who were not particularly impressed with your restaurant. Your mission should be to steer your marketing efforts to encourage the ones with bad reviews to visit the restaurant again.

It is not as difficult as it sounds. Ask them for a second chance to make things right by offering them attractive incentives. They can either be monetary or nonmonetary—depending upon the damage done. Give a 10% discount on their next meal or please them with a free appetizer or dessert (today’s special).

No one says “no” to free food or an affordable check. Initiate this strategy to win the hearts of the customers genuinely. If you incentivize your efforts to convert the negative reviews into positive ones, don’t!

4. Promote your restaurant

Why? This is because promoting your business will encourage prospective customers to visit at least once. Not only this, make use of tools such as Google+ and Facebook to invite customers, who have been to your restaurant, to review and leave feedback.

Maintain a proper online website and hyperlink your social media pages and blogs (if any) to give a complete understanding of your restaurant. A digital presence is extremely important to your reputation as it will showcase you as a business that is easily approachable. And, this is one quality is a must in the service business.

Engage in a humble conduct and try to generate a positive publicity for your business. This will overshadow the occasional negative reviews and give you the time and space to rectify them properly.

Apart from this, use your website to establish communication with your customers and keep them informed about special menus, additional cuisines, daily deals, price changes and announcements about events at your restaurant.

Negative reviews are everywhere. Your restaurant can’t hide from negativity. It can’t function flawlessly. No matter how good the business is, your restaurant can’t ensure the happiness of all customers. So yes, negative reviews are inevitable but they can work to your advantage, provided you embrace them with confidence and sincerity.

Think of reviews as customer research. You can certainly extract valuable insights that can be used to accelerate your restaurant’s business development and profits. Remember: It’s all about maintaining the right kind of attitude!

Now, all of these can be done manually by visiting each social media and review sites, but it is certainly time consuming. And to be honest, it’s just not sustainable!

Another alternative is to use a free analytics software which will pull all the reviews from relevant sites and present to you in an easy-to-read dashboard. You can use the data from the dashboard to improve your menu, get insights on your servers and ultimately provide a better customer experience.

Swipely 1

Swipely 2

Let us help you understand your business better! Contact us today at 201-546-5555 or at OnestoPayments.Com

How To Write A Business Plan To Impress Investors

How To Write A Business Plan To Impress Investors

The term “business plan” is frightening, isn’t? Of course, it is!

The thought of having to curate a plan to fund your business through investors can easily drop you at your wit’s end! That is why lots of business owners keep delaying the completion of their business plans.

But to scale up, your small business has to seek the financial help of investors—and that isn’t possible without a proper plan in place! However, developing such a plan doesn’t have to be serious business.

The humongous task can be broken down into parts—all of which can answer an important question about the business, in an interesting & impressive manner.

How to write a business plan like that?

business plan

1. Start With The Basic Question

“Who is my ideal customer?” The success of your small business relies on the happiness of your customers. If you know who to target and for what— you have a sound foundation for conducting market research and strategizing the marketing plan.

This way writing a business plan becomes easier. It becomes focused, clear and most importantly, actionable. The business plan is a perfect breakdown of exactly what your company stands for and the services it provides!

2. Create A General Outline Of The Plan

Start your plan with the overview of your business. Answer questions such as mission & vision, products or services offered, owners of the business, etc.

As the plan progresses, address finances—the amount you need and your plans to spend it. Include at least one short-term (less than a year) and one long-term goal (3+ years) of your business, along with a few objectives to achieve those goals.

3. Study About The Market & Your Competition

Investors won’t be fully convinced with your plan unless & until you yourself know who your competitors are (along with their strengths and weaknesses) and what the current market scenario is presently like.

As a small business owner, you must divide the market on the basis of your own analysis and fit your target consumer base in one of the segments. This will not only put your research in perspective but also your business plan.

4. Conduct A SWOT Analysis

As a small business owner, you have to be realistic and work towards analyzing and improving upon your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. A business plan must reflect this genuity!

Whether it is about the things that set your business apart from others or the areas where your company needs to work harder—the investors will be mighty impressed to understand how your business plans to overcome its weaknesses & threats and leverage new opportunities against its strengths.

5. Discuss Management

A business can’t run without its employees. Therefore, you should certainly talk about the people behind all the magic! Your business plan must be able to give the investors some idea about the team’s background and their roles in the day-to-day affairs of the company.

Talking about employee management will boost the investors’ confidence in your business.

6. Talk About Financial Projections

Most businesses skip this part, but the truth is that talking about finance only shows your business in a more positive light. The business plan is the perfect platform for you to explain your assumptions about revenue, sales growth and expenditure.

Highlighting expected year of breaking even, net profits & losses and other expenses incurred will give the investors a sound idea about your business’ financial stability.

7. Discuss Customer Payment Methods

Whether you offer a product or provide services to your customers, they will make payments to you. So ask yourself: “Are my customers comfortable in making payments to my company? Am I offering them the right payment method?”

Before the investors raise questions on your payment mode, discuss it in the business plan. Talk about the software you use. It is not just about boosting the customers’ confidence by offering them a secure payment method, but also convincing the investors with your mode of running the business!

Onesto Payments, for instance, solves payments and POS challenges for small businesses. It also offers the businesses with the best and shares knowledgeable information to keep them updated.

8. Know When To End

Yes. There are many things you can mention in a business plan. But drawing attention to every other detail of the business is not going to fetch results. The key is to be smart and not go overboard with the information you put in the plan.

Investors don’t have time to read the entire business plan. So keep it simple and crisp. A concise business plan doesn’t exceed 20 pages; so make sure yours doesn’t!

Your business plan is a powerful tool. Even after you have received the desired funds, it is important to have a look at it every once a while to stay on track. While you have set goals for your business, the same can be evaluated using the plan. If the progress is not in the right direction, quickly make changes.

It is indeed essential to guide your business’ growth and expansion plans!