- by eigital content team |
- September 26, 2021
- eatOS | 5 min read
Could Pop-Ups Be Next for Struggling Restaurants?
Restaurants Face Trouble Again
Usually, pop-ups come before the brick-and-mortar restaurant. Owners can test their concept before launching an expensive, large-scale operation. This typically makes pop-ups invaluable. So why have some restaurants decided to turn the tables, and go backwards?
The food service industry has adapted in interesting ways because of COVID-19. As the Delta variant spreads more rapidly, restaurants are once again losing customers and steady profit. It’s causing shutdowns whenever someone tests positive, and operations pause as management contact traces where possible. Nobody wants to close down again, but it’s unavoidable particularly if you don’t have the staff to cover for sick employees.
Even if your staff is vaccinated, news of an outbreak is still disastrous for your customers and, consequently, your reputation. Restaurants need solutions.
Why Pop-Ups are Coming Back in Style
When restaurants open and close every couple of months, the ideal business model does that intentionally. Build shutdown costs into the budget with a pop-up, which is designed to last a short time.
Consider Lord Stanley. Co-owners, chefs and partners Rupert and Carrie Blease own this San Franciscan restaurant. Now it’s transforming into Turntable at Lord Stanley. For two months apiece, they’ll host culinary names with different expertise from all around the world. The short-lived time frame works despite the spread of Delta, as the virus has less chance of doing so much damage to a business meant for a shorter time frame.
Limited windows have another advantage, this one less dire: It generates buzz. “while supplies last” campaigns naturally pique interest. People will talk about it, try it out, and come back again when the next pop-up comes. If you’re in the area, try it starting September 7th. Turntable at Lord Stanley will be open Tuesday through Saturday from 5:30 – 10PM.
Are Pop-Ups the Solution?
Restaurants might handle the financial strain of COVID-29 in a number of ways. Pop-ups are one viable option. Since workers don’t legally have to get vaccinated, restaurants can incentivize them with days off and provide rewards if they do it. That can help entice back workers so that your endeavors go as smoothly as possible, whether you stay a standing restaurant or try something new.
Find whatever fits for your restaurant, customers and capabilities. Perhaps, rather than reducing to a pop-up, you might prefer to rotate out other vendors like Lord Stanley. Partnering with local vendors puts you in the community’s good books, spreads your brand through word-of-mouth, and presents new marketing opportunities. All this helps expand your current customer base. Find clever ways to boost operations in a way that works for your restaurant. If you’re having trouble running smoothly through an old system, consider easing the transition by investing in a smarter Point of Sale.
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