Coronavirus has certainly created a devastating economic impact on the restaurant industry.
However, it is how restaurants choose to move forward that counts.
Indeed, in many ways, the industry has been forced to evolve much faster into the digital age.
Eventually, when patrons are comfortable with connection, community, and experiences, they will most likely shift more from takeout to eating in.
However, it's important to prepare for what customers will expect from your restaurant.
1. Sanitation and Health
Indeed, COVID-19 has heightened customer expectations for restaurant cleanliness.
Even after the high risk of COVID-19 ends, many have awakened to the importance of sanitation to reduce the transmission of airborne diseases.
Also, customers are more health-conscious with increased insight into the connections between obesity and poor health.
From this point forward, it's more important than ever for restaurants to provide healthy options that actually taste good, extending far beyond typical romaine lettuce salads.
2. Regulatory Changes
The future of health regulations is all but guaranteed to change.
However, no one knows for sure what changes are coming.
It's important for restaurants to keep up with health regulatory updates.
You can keep up with the latest regulatory updated from the Food & Drug Admistration for your state by clicking here.
3. Physical Distance
Along with sanitation and health, many patrons associate physical distance with a lesser likelihood of catching diseases.
The anxiety of eating closely to others will most likely remain after COVID-19 risks decrease.
So, it's important for restaurants to take another look at their seating arrangements and the perception of safe customer experiences.
4. Open Kitchens
When it comes to their health, customers expect transparency from restaurants.
Kitchens with windows or kitchens that are open to the public will most likely continue to gain popularity.
5. Touchless Experiences
With Bloom, customers are able to receive offers sent to their phone based on their custom amount of visits.
Customers do not have to worry about bringing a physical loyalty card or downloading an app.
Touchless experiences like these are expected to continue to gain traction.
6. Ghost Kitchens
More and more professional kitchens that are set up for delivery-only meals are continuing to gain traction.
As more customers get into the routine of ordering their meals for delivery, they are more likely to continue this trend even after COVID-19 passes.
7. Voice Activated Kitchens
To ease the concerns of staff, and to create a safer environment, voice-activated commercial microwaves, ovens, fridges, etc. are continuing to gain traction.
While this was most likely the future of the restaurant industry regardless, COVID-19 has accelerated its popularity even faster.
8. Air Systems
Air purification systems are facing an overhaul in the restaurant industry, as new, safer technologies are being introduced to help reduce the spread of disease.
9. Online Ordering
According to Fast Casual, 92% of restaurant traffic is currently off-premise.
Many restaurants are updating their websites to allow curbside online ordering.
As this continues to gain traction, many customers will come to expect these conveniences.
10. WiFi Marketing
Even after restaurants make updates to improve their guest's experience and safety, it's essentially meaningless without being able to share these updates with customers.
Many restaurants have jumped leaps and bounds into the future and better understand the importance of email addresses, positive reviews, loyalty offers, and improved communication with guests.
It's never been more important to reach out to guests on autopilot with email campaigns. Get a free demo to learn more about how Bloom Intelligence works.
In conclusion, it's not the strongest or the fastest restaurants that survive, but those that are more adaptable to change.
It's crucial that restaurants create momentum during these difficult times.
Want to learn more about how to increase profits while fighting the impacts of Coronavirus? Check out this post from our friends at SuperFi.
We want to hear from you! Comment below to share how you think dining out will change.
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