In the past year, the Indian restaurant industry has gone through many ups & downs. A large part of the industry & its labour force suffered because of the pandemic. Many traditional restaurant trends & practices which people assumed to be fool-proof tricks to success fell flat on its face.
Yet the industry coped up just as fast as it collapsed. In fact, post-pandemic a large share of restaurant owners were young & inexperienced restaurateurs who had decided to bend the situation to their advantage and create unique USPs for their businesses to attract customers!
Take the example of the vegan & plant-based diet! The older model of restaurants failed to cater to this new food trend but many young restaurants were happy to cater to it. There was a considerable increase in the adoption of restaurant tech which benefited the growth of the business. The restaurant industry became highly addicted to the profitable CRM tools & gained customer loyalty by providing personalised experiences to their customers.
These are a few of many unprecedented restaurant trends which would not be going ‘out of fashion’ for years to come. And if you are a restaurant owner wondering about what’s new is happening in the industry & how can make the best of these new opportunities then keep reading this blog!
Restaurant Trends Every Restaurateur Should Know About
Some of these trends are now so prevalent that their convenience & utility speak for themselves.
1. Online Food Delivery & At-home Dining
Many restaurants had pivoted towards catering for their customers through online food delivery or takeaways. While it initially seems inconvenient & even scary, both the parties (restaurants and their customers) have gotten used to it! And now at-home dining is so prevalent that eating outside is, ironically, all about eating your favourite meal without stepping out of your house.
The convenience of at-home dining paired with its safety has created a huge shift in demand. With the rise in technology and new third-party ordering platforms, it has become easy for restaurants to cater to this demand with ease. Hence, the biggest restaurant trend in 2022 would likely be how to get creative with take-out food to cater to this food-at-home demand.
Restaurants too have been eager to promote their brands outside their premises & create a restaurant-like dining experience for their customers at their homes! Click here to know how you can easily do the same!
2. Rise In Cloud Kitchens
Cloud kitchen? Ghost kitchen? Virtual kitchen? Call it anything you want but this restaurant trend has now become a million-dollar industry & is on the way to becoming a billion-dollar sector. Read it for yourself, if you don’t believe us!
Because of the difficult situation Covid-19 created, Cloud kitchens emerged as the survival method for restaurants. And now it has become popular among passionate chefs and restaurant owners. Cloud kitchen has numerous benefits. It requires lesser labour & lesser restaurant maintenance & infrastructure cost. Restaurants that already have a defined online presence and delivery personnel can successfully grow their business by opening multiple cloud outlets running from the same dine-in kitchen.
3. Introducing Tasty Healthy Food
Customers have switched their eating habits & of course, restaurant trends have changed too! There is no way that words like ‘vegan-based diet’, ‘Organic food items, or ‘Plant-based diet’ hasn’t reached your ears. You can say that after cooking & eating in the comforts of their homes, the customers are looking for the same healthy restaurant menu even outside.
If you are just as confused as we were about these terms, don’t worry! We will help you understand everything about these new eating habits of customers & even help you create your own restaurant vegan menu!
4. Focus on Restaurant Hygiene
Standard hygiene and cleanliness were being ignored for so many years. Now, restaurants must show the back-end process of creating their food. This could include how the kitchen is being sanitized daily, the staff is wearing appropriate uniforms, masks and gloves, and so on. This will give a sense of relief to the customers during these challenging times.
It won’t be wrong to say that we all are now hesitant about the restaurants that don’t have hand sanitisers on each table!
5. Increase in Adoption of CRM Tools
It wasn’t that restaurants didn’t care about customers before. But in the previous arrangements, in most cases, the restaurants waited for customers to approach their business. Now due to the rise in competition in the industry & rise in CRM-based technology like loyalty programs, businesses are eagerly taking their businesses to their target audiences.
The customers are actively being provided post-sales services of reward points, discounts & offer coupons! This is helping them increase their profit margins & earn customer loyalty!
6. Restaurant Technology
Technology has been one of the key aspects which have helped the survival of restaurants! Be it kitchen automation, software support or the robot waiters. Restaurant trends will never be bored of new technology updates!
The future of restaurant food service revolves around the concept of contactless ordering and fast delivery! The use of robots as waiters in restaurants is on a rise. The robot waiters have not only become a viable way to increase profit margins but have also allowed the human staff by taking over menial tasks and freeing them to focus on customer service and other high-value interactions. These robots take orders and serve food to the tables.
7. Digital Expansion
If your restaurant doesn’t have a website of its own, an active social media account & google business, then it’s time you get on this restaurant trend because you are missing a LOT of business!
Your restaurant website is your digital address. Trust us when we say this, more than 70% of customers Google restaurants & reviews before visiting any establishment! And so, not having a website & actively working to take customer feedback on every channel & in every way possible is a big mistake!
The number of social media users is constantly growing. This platform acts as an easy tool to reach out to a large audience of foodies via a single tap. Restaurants can use social media to advertise their brand, create personal experiences and enhance customer retention.
The pandemic spurred some fundamental changes in the way the restaurants operated. However, let’s not forget that delicious food accompanied by exceptional customer service (dine-in or delivery) will always be the most important aspect of the food industry.
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