Tips to Fight Inflation for Restaurants

An image of a plate with food and an upward arrow, representing the increasing inflation faced by restaurants.
Ayseli İzmen
Ayseli İzmen
September 22, 2022

Living in a high inflationary environment worldwide, being prepared as a restaurant owner is essential since inflation can be a disadvantage for restaurants. As the price of food keeps going up, it's difficult for mainstream society to keep up with the cost of living.

Due to rising food and fuel prices, the restaurant industry is one of the most affected by inflation as an industry tied up to the supply chain ecosystem. In this article, we will provide some tips to help restaurants fight inflation and stay afloat.

It is also crucial for restaurants to keep up with the latest trends and figure out how to combat inflation with the tips we will provide here. The restaurant industry is one of the most highly competitive industries, and it must have a competitive edge.

To start with, it always helps to stay aware of the prices in your area, so you can make sure you're charging a competitive price for your menu items. If you see that other restaurants are charging less than you are, then it might be time to lower your prices as well while trying to increase your sales simultaneously.

Diving straight into the topic, there are a number of different strategies that may be taken into consideration. You should be deciding on what’s best for your situation, location, and menu according to your restaurant’s unique circumstances.

1. Reflecting Quality and Dignity

Two women examining a restaurant bill on a piece of paper.

The most obvious one is to raise menu pricing, which is one way to manage in an inflationary environment.

If you keep your plate quality up to a certain standard with quality ingredients, your guests will understand that everything costs more now. They need to pay more for high-quality ingredients as opposed to last decade, and that’s quite alright. By focusing on the quality of your food and service, both you and your customers are actually investing in high-quality ingredients. This isn’t just a win-win scenario to keep happy customers, but it also helps offset some of the price increases that restaurants are experiencing.

2. Daily or Weekly Set Menus

Another creative solution to deal with the side effects of an inflationary environment is to offer a fixed-price menu or set menu for each week. This way, customers know what they are going to get before they walk in, and you know that you will make a profit.

A weekly set menu works wonders to satisfy guests who will know that the following week, you’ll have something differently delicious on offer. Set menus work best when restaurants serve plenty, bring baskets of each item to each table, or offer an unlimited quantity of each course. Satisfaction starts with our vision, and although the capacity of each person is limited and no one can eat infinitely, offering an elegant version of the good old all-you-can-eat is a nice concept that will help your restaurant establish rapport with new customers.

Weekly wholesale shopping, on the other hand, will not be a burden on your food cost, so it’s a win-win and a great way to combat inflation while offering abundance to the people who help you make a living. Expect a lineup at your front door or get your customers to book their table if you are comfortable with this creative suggestion.

3. Playing Around with Your Menu

Another way to deal with inflation could be to offer discounts on food items that are not as popular on your menu but still have a high cost per pound, such as fish or chicken. This way, you can boost sales without having to lower your prices for more popular items like steak or hamburgers.

4. Space Sharing

Cutting costs when times are rough is an obvious one, but we have done the think-out-of-the-box part for you. If you aren’t serving breakfast, try to offer your kitchen to someone who is. Rent is the biggest expense item on most if not all, restaurant budgets, so why not think differently to make use of the resources you already have?

This way, you can also share utility bills, and the two businesses can organically support each other. If the breakfast place has a following, they may come at lunch or dinner to see what your food is like and vice versa.

5. Value-added Services

Otherwise, restaurants can also combat inflation by providing value-added services like wine pairing, happy hours, live music, and technology. In the past few years, our whole world and the way we do things changed, rapidly evolving towards a more digital era.

Successful start-ups such as FineDine have taken the restaurant world by storm while filling a much-needed gap in the industry.

Leverage Data with FineDine

FineDine offers real-time data and insights to restaurants of all sizes to assist in helping them make wise decisions to minimize expenses and generate revenue. In order to assist businesses in maximizing technology's potential to boost revenues, FineDine also offers simple-to-use tools like its restaurant profit margin calculator.

One of the fastest-growing providers of software and payment solutions for restaurants, FineDine offers numerous advantages for restaurants of all sizes and types. FineDine provides end-to-end software and payment platforms to optimize operations, enhance the customer experience, and boost revenue. FineDine's mobile ordering and fast checkout feature increases the average order quantity by 20%, saves 15 minutes per desk, and allows restaurant staff to increase tips by 40%.