The restaurant business has never been easy. Failure rates are high, public taste is fickle, and eating out is one of the first luxuries to be axed when times are tough. Insolvencies in the industry leapt by 15 per cent last year, according to accountant Moore Stephens, due to increased food prices, high energy bills, and a slump in trade due to bad weather.
But it’s not all bad news. The restaurant sector is predicted to be worth £56.3 billion by 2019, according to food consultancy Horizons. But restaurateurs have their work cut out to get a slice of this action. And in the effort to keep profitable and popular, some hospitality firms opt to refresh their operations altogether. But how can an established business give itself an effective facelift, and attract new custom?
What people want – and hate
Many hospitality bosses … Read More »
It is believed that the first restaurant in the Western world was founded in Paris, by a rather aptly named Monsieur Boulanger in 1765. Over the past four centuries dining out has remained a rather simple concept with customers enticed by good food, a warm atmosphere, and (generally) reasonable prices. However, as technology is increasingly incorporated into every aspect of our daily lives, consumers today demand a different sort of experience. From molecular gastronomy to tablets as menus, restaurants are finding unique and alternative ways to attract new consumers.
The marriage of technology and food was brought to London by pan-Asian restaurant Inamo. Opened in 2008, its technology far surpasses that of its competition. Founded by two young entrepreneurs, Inamo shows first-hand how technology will make an impact on the future of the restaurant industry. Featuring modern and innovative technology, through interactive … Read More »
Digital advertising is growing, and it’s an invaluable tool. Paid search spending has grown astronomically since 2009 and there’s a good reason for that – pay-per-click (PPC) ads work. Constant innovation from search tools makes bidding on keywords — of which there are often thousands for retailers — more efficient and effective. In addition, search engines such as the powerhouse that is Google are continually pushing the envelope with new ways to target and reach consumers. Companies that are digitally savvy enough to take advantage of these digital marketing and business techniques are often more successful than their peers. Digitally mature small and medium companies are a third more likely to have seen turnover increase in the last two years than the least digitally savvy. With this in mind, you can make your business more digitally effective with these simple … Read More »
Technology is changing the way that we shop, providing us with more and more options as to how we can purchase goods. And with new technology being released continuously, the challenge is growing for retailers to restructure their businesses to cater to this desire for an easier and more convenient shopping experience.
The consumer of the 21st century has a greater influence and more control over their retailers than ever before. Even the most modest of small family-owned shops need to realise that modernisation is essential for their survival. Technology has become key to business growth, and that requires investing additional time and money to ensure that they adopt the most appropriate system. Those that get it right will reap the rewards, while those that are slow to join in may very well see themselves becoming obsolete. More than this, retailers … Read More »
A retail manager’s job is to maximise productivity, and often it’s only after years of vocational learning that these managers become truly effective. Unlike managers in some other industries, comparatively few retail managers have degrees in management. Nevertheless, they face a variety of challenges in a fast-paced, competitive environment. At the most basic level, every successful retailer must know how to display merchandise, schedule staff and take inventory. But those basic retail skills are only part of the picture when it comes to owning or managing a retail business.
A retail business’ staff often includes inexperienced, part-time, or seasonal employees. For them their hours are long and their sales targets may seem unreachable. Yet, in this setting, good retail managers thrive. Many successful retail managers possess an array of personal attributes that transform employees into top performers. By focussing on building … Read More »
If you’re considering opening a second location for your retail business, then congratulations are in order – your current location is doing great! If it’s not, then perhaps expanding isn’t the answer to your problems.
You should only consider opening a second location if you have the capital saved to do so, and if your first location has already proven to be successful. You should also make sure that the second location is currently underserved by your target market and that it will be easy for future customers to access. If the market is large enough at the new location for supporting your new location, then why not?
Each new retail location should be approached with the same thought and careful planning that went into the first location – if not more. As with everything, it’s going to take time. Once you’ve expanded, … Read More »
Attracting a new customer can cost five times as much as keeping an existing one, so companies need to pay as much attention to retention as they do to acquisition.
Shoppers want to be your top priority when they walk into your shop, and they want it as soon as they step inside. Retailers need to have a plan in place, not only to keep customers in the shop, but to keep them coming back time and time again.
Below are some helpful tips for retail shop owners about how to keep customers in the shop, and wanting to come back for more.
If a customer has stepped into your shop, the chances are that they’re already actively looking for something that you sell – and they want it then and there. Is your shop laid out in a way that won’t … Read More »
In November 2015, online retailer Amazon.com opened up its first physical shop in Seattle. Chinese ecommerce giant Alibaba also opened its first physical store in North China last year to boost sales of its imported products. These new forays into the physical world signal the start of the latest trend in the retail sector. If you run a successful online business, then it may be time for you too to follow suit and open up your own retail shop. Or at the very least consider a pop-up.
Amazon Books is currently the only physical Amazon shop. Located at the University Village mall in Seattle, where it’s headquartered, the store gives shoppers the option to test out its proprietary devices such as its Kindle e-reader and Fire Tablet. The move has been a success and reports suggest that Amazon is looking to … Read More »
A combination of customers and cashflow is the lifeblood of any enterprise. But even if your company has a strong customer base, it’s always sensible to keep cultivating new relationships to maintain business growth and to defend your operation against being vulnerable in the future.
Too many SMEs depend on a small number of clients for their livelihood, and if one of these valuable building blocks suddenly crumbles then a business can find itself in trouble very quickly. Necessity has driven many companies to look for new customers in recent years. Since 2008, three out of four SMEs have lost money as a result of an entity they work with going bust, according to recent research from credit agency Experian. Not only are these small firms left out of pocket, but they must also fill the gap where the failed business … Read More »