Tips for Successful Restaurant Takeout Service

Posted by W.D. Colledge on Sep 28, 2020 9:57:07 AM

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Takeout is one of the hottest trends in foodservice right now. In fact, it's altering some of the longstanding daily food traditions we have, and it's forcing us to reconsider the ways we look at the days of the week.

According to The Washington Post, Friday and Saturday night off-premise dining has increased dramatically across North America, accounting for approximately a quarter of all sales. There's clearly an opportunity in takeout and off-premise dining, so what can restaurants do to help make their service more efficient and profitable?

Make Ordering as Easy as Possible.

You may need to alter what ordering looks like for the time being in order to increase safety while minimizing inconvenience to your customers. Because traditional fast food counters can still bring more people than recommended into a small space, encourage customers not to come into the building at all if possible. Instead, provide other options beyond the traditional drive thru, such as phone, online, or app ordering. Clearly communicate this information with your customers by posting it on your door, website, and social media pages. 

Be Organized.

Restaurants that are not used to large numbers of to-go orders can find making sure each customer gets the correct order challenging. There are several methods restaurants can adopt for keeping track of more people.

If your restaurant chooses to continue using traditional reusable plastic numbers, be sure to thoroughly sanitize them in between customers. In many circumstances, temporarily switching to disposable paper numbers is a cleaner and more convenient alternative. This method can also help keep phone and online orders organized if your area recommends having all customers wait in their cars instead of coming inside to pick up an order. By asking customers to make their order number visible, such as on their phone or on a piece of paper, employees can account for all methods of ordering. 

Some areas may allow customers to enter the building to pick up an order. In this situation, employees can minimize congestion in the building by asking customers to wait in their cars and calling, texting, or sending a notification on your app when an order is ready to be picked up. 

Make Pick-Up Perfect.

Pick-up is the part of the service that requires the most effort on behalf of the customer. Foods should be ready to go, bagged, boxed, and available without a lot of thought or effort on behalf of diners.

There are a few aspects of this, some the diners see and some they might not. Consider staging pick-up areas and use equipment that can hold foods at ideal temperatures and conditions in order to preserve quality.

Whether it's curbside or just inside the front door, making orders easy to locate will make the pick-up process much less stressful. And in today's era, the customers that have the most confidence are likely to be the ones to return.

Looking to promote your takeout business? Check out the Carryout Catalog from Metro to view an entire collection of solutions to make carryout foodservice easier and more profitable.

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Topics: service, covid-19