Guest Post: Getting Your Restaurant Out of a Slump

Reported by, the online wholesale food marketplace-

Today’s post was written by Jessica Sanders.

While your restaurant may have come out of the gate running, it’s not unrealistic that it has fallen into a bit of a slump. If you’re feeling like business is slowing, consider what you can change to take it back to where it needs to be. Though your initial efforts got people in seats, now you want people waiting at the door.

New Marketing

The first step is to reach every customer possible – and one way to do that is to diversify your marketing efforts, or invest further into options you’ve already started to explore. The key here, however, is to branch out from where you started to reach a whole new set of customers.

  • Pinterest: Pinterest is a great platform for businesses – using high-quality photos of your menu items is a smart way to get brand impressions. This is a great way to impress customers with the one thing that is most important, your delicious food.
  • Direct mailing: Send out a blind mailing to a variety of neighborhoods in a few areas of town. Coupons are a sure way to get people in the door at least once. From there, you can count on your great service and good food to bring them back for me.

Revamp Your Menu

Whether your original menu had great reviews or not, it’s wise to consider what you can add, take off, or modify. Not necessarily for your customers, but for your business as a whole. Ask yourself what dishes were successful, what got few orders, and how that effects your customers and bottom line.

  • Food cost: Some dishes may be more expensive to prepare, or use perishable items that can become costly when not used. Consider your current food cost, and where you want it to be – assess your menu to see how you can get there by adding or subtracting menu items.
  • Overall satisfaction: What dishes did your customers love, which ones did they hate? Consider removing some items, or redoing them to your customers’ preferences. They are the ones you hope to impress, after all.

A New Design

Likely, you built your restaurant from scraps when you first opened. With little to no money coming in, you did what you could with what you had. However, after bringing in a profit and a small following of local customers, you can invest in some great furniture pieces to kick the entire atmosphere up a notch. You have a few options.

  • Go DIY: If you want to save your money for expensive furniture for the restaurant, go DIY the whole way. Splurge on big pieces and do the rest yourself. Customers will mostly be concerned about seating and dining, so take that into consideration.
  • Hire a designer: Instead of doing it all yourself, take that money to hire a team of designers. This will ensure that you get the outcome you are hoping for with a set amount of cash.

When you fall into that 6 month slump, it’s important that you take action right away. Your business can still thrive and grow, but sometimes changes are necessary to get where you want to go.

Amanda DiSilvestro is a professional blogger that writes on a variety of topics including Chicago restaurants. She writes for, a leading directory of restaurants.

(Photo Source)

Views: 404

Tags: Foodem, Industry, Restaurant, business,, restaurant


You need to be a member of FohBoh to add comments!

Join FohBoh

Comment by Foodem on October 22, 2012 at 8:59am

Thanks for you comment Tom. Completely agree, going back and reviewing the core message is ALWAYS necessary when something is out of place, in any business. In reviewing the core message, realizations of new strategies may arise such as taking advantage of a new social network or enhancing an existing website.

Comment by Tom Kelley on October 22, 2012 at 7:35am

Not sure "new marketing" is a solution to slumping sales before a full brand and operational review is undertaken.  Core brand messages should be reviewed, and everything reviewed so that everyone in the restaurant is DELIVERING on the restaurant's brand promise to the guest.


Often times, getting back to core fundamentals works PRIOR to a refresh of interiors, menus, and a fresh look at marketing to new or expanded demographics.




Tom Kelley

AccessPoint Group




Social Wine Club for Craft Wineries


Kids LiveWell atwitter over Twitter party

In its continuing effort to promote more nutritious and flavorful children's menu options, the NRA will hold a Twitter party  -More

Starbucks could become top on-premise wine seller in U.S.

Starbucks is planning to slowly expand its evening sales of wine, beer and small plates to thousands of selected stores throu -More

The evolving nature of snacks

Snacks have shifted from an after-school treat to a meal alternative as meal times become more fragmented.  -More


Posting a job or finding a job starts here at FohBoh. Call us about special $25 posting packages to syndicate across all major jobs boards.

National News

Wahlburgers Announces Expansion Plans Including Franchise Agreement in Philadelphia

Wahlburgers has signed a franchise agreement with Hingham Associates, LLC that will bring five Wahlburgers to the metropolitan Philadelphia area over the next several years. The franchise group is actively looking at sites and is targeting a late 2014-early 2015 opening for its first restaurant.

Chipotle Mexican Grill, Inc. First Quarter 2014 Revenue Up 24.4%

Comparable restaurant sales increased 13.4% - Restaurant level operating margin was 25.9%, a decrease of 40 basis points

Jamba Juice Announces Grand Opening of New St. Louis, MO Location

Jamba Juice Company announced the brand’s continued expansion in the St. Louis market with the opening of a Jamba Juice® store at 11477 Olive Blvd. on April 16, 2014.

Expert in Real Estate Analytics Joins Luna Grill

Luna Grill, the San Diego-based Mediterranean restaurant chain, is welcoming retail real estate industry veteran Greg Thorburn to its leadership team. Thorburn has been brought on board to fill the newly created position of Vice-President of Real Estate.

Rita's Italian Ice Awards Area Development Agreement for Kansas

Rita's Italian Ice has awarded franchise and area development agreements for Kansas and the Kansas City area, which extends to the Missouri side of the city, to franchisees and local residents Jay Miller, Jeff Miller and Pat Reilly.


If you are looking for capital to start or grow your restaurant, create the next 501c3, develop and launch the next app for the restaurant industry,or want to help your peers in some meaningful way, we want to know about it.


TED: Matthew Carter: My life in typefaces - Matthew Carter (2014)

Pick up a book, magazine or screen, and more than likely you'll come across some typography designed by Matthew Carter. In this charming talk, the man behind typefaces such as Verdana, Georgia and Bell Centennial (designed just for phone books -- remember them?), takes us on a spin through a career focused on the very last pixel of each letter of a font.

TED: Jeremy Kasdin: The flower-shaped starshade that might help us detect Earth-like planets - Jeremy Kasdin (2014)

Astronomers believe that every star in the galaxy has a planet, one fifth of which might harbor life. Only we haven't seen any of them -- yet. Jeremy Kasdin and his team are looking to change that with the design and engineering of an extraordinary piece of equipment: a flower petal-shaped "starshade" that allows a telescope to photograph planets from 50,000 kilometers away. It is, he says, the "coolest possible science."

TED: Norman Spack: How I help transgender teens become who they want to be - Norman Spack (2013)

Puberty is an awkward time for just about everybody, but for transgender teens it can be a nightmare, as they grow overnight into bodies they aren't comfortable with. In a heartfelt talk, endocrinologist Norman Spack tells a personal story of how he became one of the few doctors in the US to treat minors with hormone replacement therapy. By staving off the effects of puberty, Spack gives trans teens the time they need. (Filmed at TEDxBeaconStreet.)

TED: Jennifer Senior: For parents, happiness is a very high bar - Jennifer Senior (2014)

The parenting section of the bookstore is overwhelming—it's "a giant, candy-colored monument to our collective panic," as writer Jennifer Senior puts it. Why is parenthood filled with so much anxiety? Because the goal of modern, middle-class parents—to raise happy children—is so elusive. In this honest talk, she offers some kinder and more achievable aims.

© 2014   Created by FohBoh.

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service