As warm weather arrives, it’s time to turn our attention to patio and outdoor dining opportunities. Customers like the perceived safety al fresco eating offers, so attract their business by making your operation as inviting as possible.
Prepare for safety and enjoyment
Enhance the experience by following these tips to get your patio ready:
- Plan a way to turn tables quickly and safely if seating is limited.
- Follow local health guidelines, with special attention to:
- Use proper surface sanitizers
- Mark tables not in use
- Provide social distancing signage
- Have staff follow safety protocols.
- Check the condition of your furniture and replace, if necessary.
- Consider unbreakable drinkware and serving ware.
- Deep-clean surfaces like decking, handrails and light fixtures,
- Prepare a method to control flies, mosquitoes and other pests.
Get the word out
Be ready before people start asking about outdoor dining options. Electronic communications and traditional outlets will let people know what’s in store. Here’s where to start:
- Social media
- Your business page (use hashtags on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and others)
- Local online message boards
- Your website (update with fresh images, information)
- Email (contact regulars in your database)
- Text messaging (reach out to takeout customers)
- Local news media (host a media day to show what’s new)
- Signs and billboards (give yourself a public shout out)
Tell them and sell them
Make sure to hit the high points in your message with these details:
- Promote your opening date and outdoor dining hours.
- Explain how you are addressing safety concerns.
- Describe specials and limited time patio offers
Make plans to celebrate all season long by taking advantage of special days on the calendar. Yes, Mother’s Day is May 9, but did you know National Hamburger Day is May 28? Almost every day is a food or beverage day, and your patio is just the place to celebrate.
For more information about patios and outdoor dining possibilities, ask your Gordon Food Service Sales Representative about products or recipes to make your season shine.