The COVID-19 era has massively changed the restaurant industry landscape. And as if the changes in customer behavior and safety regulations weren’t challenging enough, the restaurant owners were also forced to implement all these at a breakneck pace! The situation has stabilized quite a bit since March; clear regulations are in place, and restaurateurs are now no longer innovating on the spot. They now have clear ideas on how to open safely and serve the new customer demands that have emerged in the wake of the pandemic.
All this has, of course, been expensive! For business owners in the F&B sector, the lockdown and subsequent months had already drained cash reserves. To reopen their businesses, fresh capital was needed. Many turned to alternative funders like us! Alt-funders like Crest Hill Capital have been helping hundreds of restaurant owners get ready for the new normal with easy-to-access and easy-to-repay Merchant Cash Advances.
However, we are not finished yet! Restaurant owners who have only made minimal changes and investment need to understand that the pandemic will be around for a while, and there is no guarantee that newly acquired customer habits and behaviors will change back to the pre-COVID days. In fact, many experts suggest that the COVID-19 crisis will change how restaurants operate in the future.
Here are a few smart tips for your business to sustain and flourish in the year ahead:
• You need to make sure your business is prepared. One way to do that would be to look beyond disinfection practices and masks and marry dining experience and safety permanently.
• You could look at introducing a 360-degree contactless service – From digital menus to Robot-servers and contactless payments -there are many big and small technical interventions to keep your establishment COVID-proof and also elevate your restaurant’s dining experience in the long-run.
• Remodeling interiors – Construction is costly and time-consuming, but putting in the investment now will help generate returns in future years. Permanent and well-thought-out structural and design changes will give your restaurant an up market feel – after all, plastic partitions and fine dining don’t really go together.
• Invest in expanding the takeaway business – Many dine-in restaurants don’t go the takeaway route, but the pandemic taught us all the advantages of developing diversified business models. There are plenty of customers willing to pay for good meals sitting at home, and they are likely to stay indoors for the rest of the year, so do invest some money in fine-tuning your takeaway kitchen and delivery service to ensure you keep the cash flowing.
At Crest Hill Capital, we routinely work with business owners in the F&B sector, and we highly recommend you take a long view of your business investments. Many owners are concentrating on opening and surviving in the immediate future, but it shouldn’t stop you from planning for brighter years ahead.
If you are worried about funding these changes, then call us. We offer quick, easy and flexible cash advances to small business owners in your position and would be happy to support you and your business through this challenging period.