The catering business has been hit hard in this pandemic. Company lunches and events are not a pre-pandemic thing. Since the pandemic begun early 2020, most events have been cancelled or postponed. Things have changed. But that doesn’t mean that business will stop. You may not be able to cater 1,000-person events right now, but you can prepare a thousand meals for pickup per day. You can also incorporate deliveries in your business by partnering with delivery companies.
Your catering business should adapt to the environment it is currently in to ensure that the business will still run amidst this pandemic. Here are some ways your catering company can survive the COVID-19 pandemic:
1. Meal prep kits with pickup options
As with the other restaurants and foodservice businesses, get on the meal prep train. Start offering your best-sellers as individual meal prep items. As a catering company, you already have an advantage because you have experience when it comes to creating meals in a mass-production style. Add your new meal prep kits and pickup options to your POS system so that the ordering process is easy for your staff and customers as well.
2. Utilize your food truck
Most catering companies own a food truck. Now is the time to coordinate with the local government to allow you to visit the neighborhood and sell your meals. Notify local consumers through all channels available. People in their homes will be happy because it will be convenient for them to buy from you.
3. Sales to retail customers
Some grocery stores are low on stock so you might want to look into picking up retail customers. What you sell doesn’t need to be a specialty item. You can go as simple as a loaf of white bread sold to your local grocer to keep your catering business afloat before the economy recovers. Remember that this is a temporary setback. The faster you can adapt to the changes, the faster you will be in a better position to be back on track.
4. Online ordering
Try to have an online presence now more than ever. You need to make use of the internet because most people prefer contactless transactions. Take this time to transition to online ordering, so that when customers are ready to place their order, they know exactly where to find you. Find a system that can give you order prep times and establish delivery zones.
5. Start booking future orders now
When a client calls to cancel catering for an event, it is going to be a disappointing moment. However, don’t let that get to you. Instead, you can offer them to make a deposit for a future date. Make them aware that you have openings in the future with a content marketing campaign. You can also create partnerships with wedding planners and vendors who can refer you as part of their package deals. You can also do this for your partners. This way, you will be helping each other. It’s a win-win situation. Reach out to your network and start working on marketing campaigns to book future events.
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