7 Tips for a Successful Cafe Takeout Service

Many businesses are now finding that they have to adapt their brand and way of delivering these services because of the Covid-19 pandemic. So, what does this mean if you run an independent coffee shop or cafe in your local town or village? Well, one answer is that if you don't already offer a takeout service, then you could branch out into the takeaway sector. Below we explore 7 tips for starting a successful cafe takeout service.

1. Make ordering easy

One of the first things that you need to look at is how your customers will place their orders. If you are no longer open or have limited space due to social distancing, then you need to provide an alternative way to order food and drinks. Phone and text orders remain incredibly popular, but to increase your number of orders you could also use an app or utilise online ordering. This simply opens up your customer base, enabling more people to access your takeaway service.

2. The right price

Alongside the need for easy access and ordering from your menu is the need to set the right price for food and beverages. Look at other local businesses and find out what they are charging. You obviously need to be competitive, but at the same time you need to make that profit to keep your business afloat.

Buy Disposables Online3. The right packaging

One of the most important changes that you will need to make is that of how to package and transport your food to your customers. Your food packaging should be designed to keep food safe and intact until it is eaten. Cardboard boxes and sturdy tubs are ideal for takeout food such as cakes and pastries. You can also buy microwave friendly tubs and boxes so that food can be reheated, such as your homemade soup or pasta dishes. If you wish to use environmentally friendly packaging, then there is always the option to use biodegradable coffee cups. These cups usually have a double wall that acts as extra insulation, a necessity for any take out cafe. Also, don't forget the importance of the paper bag.

4. Targeting the right customers

You may need to think about your target audience and if this will change because of your decision to offer a takeaway service, as opposed to eating on the premises. If your usual customer base consists of shop workers or students, then you may find that families are now wanting to use your service. This means you'll need to take a fresh look at the food and beverages that you currently offer and if you need to make any changes.

5. The outdoor area

You may wish to offer an outdoor space for customers to sit and eat or have a quick cup of coffee. You need to think carefully about how to do this, as you will need to adhere to strict social distancing practices while maintaining high health and safety standards. The use of plastic chairs and tables are a good option as they are easy to wipe clean. Disposable tablecloths can also be used for each customer, then thrown away.

6. Delivery option

Could you offer a delivery service to help improve your overall sales? Many small cafes are now using a local delivery service to deliver food and beverages to the local community. Alternatively, you may wish to hire your own delivery staff. Just be sure to set a maximum delivery radius with a minimum order price.

7. Clean and efficient

If you do decide to open an outdoor seating area then you need to be mindful of extra stringent hygiene measures, to keep your customers and staff safe. You therefore need to have a well-stocked supply of cleaning materials, such as blue paper rolls, paper towels and wet wipes for your customers and staff. Hand sanitiser stations situated outside would also be advantageous. Having a safe, well-maintained outdoor seating area in which people can enjoy a snack and drink will always be welcomed by customers.

We are living through incredibly difficult financial times but there is hope and a new way of doing things. Think about how you could adapt your coffee shop or cafe. Here at Cooksmill, we have a range of biodegradable cups, straws, lids, paper bags and carry out boxes for your carry out service. We also sell a range of cleaning disposables for the catering industry. To learn more please do browse the website and if you have any questions please do get in touch with us today.

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