If you are already running a catering business, of whatever variety, we hope you have achieved success. However, for many people within this industry, there is one common thorn in their side. The competition! You won’t be the only business looking to fill the hungry bellies of the people in your community, so you will need to do all you can to enhance your business if you want to see those all-important profits come in. To help you make your business a success, follow these tips and see the belly of your bank balance grow as a result.
- Keep an eye on your business expenses. In a bid to beat your nearest rivals, you may be tempted to spend over your budget. Don’t! You may see an upturn in custom, but the risk isn’t worth it until you can comfortably spend more within a comfortable margin. There are ways you can save money without compromising on the quality of your business. This includes using refurbished and secondhand catering equipment, using a cheaper supplier, and making use of free marketing techniques (see below).
- Market your business. You want people to hear about your business, so you do need to push it into the minds of the hungry public. You can do this for next to nothing by using social media and through setting up your own website with a free web-builder. You can also rely on word-of-mouth, asking your satisfied customers to write reviews about you on Yelp, or passing word through their own social networks. The more effort you put into marketing your business, the more custom you will receive.
- Offer quality food choices. Food is your raison d’etre, but if there are too many other establishments serving what you do, you will have to rethink your menu. Therefore, think of alternative recipes that are not being covered elsewhere. Consider the quality of your food as well. You won’t attract many customers if your food isn’t appealing through look or taste, so focus on your cooking techniques, as well as remembering the visual artistry of the food dish.
- Give excellent customer service. Whether you are inviting people into your food establishment, or you are being hired out to provide food for events, always focus on your customer service. Be respectful and polite, even when people turn their noses up at the food you have prepared for them. Remember to say thank to your customers for using your services, ask for feedback, and train up your staff, so they exceed in the way they deal with the customers.
- Make cleanliness a priority. Don’t let the Health Department shut your down. Ensure your premises and equipment are spotlessly clean and make sure your staff adheres to sanitary rules in and out of the kitchen. Uniforms need to be spotless too, as your customers won’t take kindly to being served by somebody with food and grease stains all over their outfit. You don’t want your customers getting ill due to poor hygiene either, so to avoid lawsuits and the loss of your good reputation, ensure everybody is up to speed on good habits and exemplary levels of cleanliness.
If you’re already in the catering business, you are probably already aware of some of these things. However, a gentle reminder is never a bad thing, and if you are about to begin in this industry, adhering to the tips above will serve you (and your customers) well.