Boost Your Brunch Sales with These 6 Tips
Posted: Jan. 11, 2016
Offering brunch is one of the best ways for your restaurant to boost sales and bring in new customers. According to Technomic MarketBriefing, nine out of 10 customers go out to brunch at least occasionally. Technomic further estimates that breakfast sales will increase more than 22% over the next year.
As a restaurant owner, capitalizing on this demand can dramatically boost your restaurant’s bottom line. Whether you are considering adding brunch to the menu or looking to optimize your existing brunch sales, we have you covered. Keep reading for our top six tips for mastering brunch.
Brunches Aren’t Just for Sundays
Gone are the days of brunch being dominated by the after-church crowd. Yes, this is still an important demographic, but expanding your brunch hours will allow you to reach different demographics and increase your sales. Many millennials, for instance, frequent Saturday brunches, when they can drink signature brunch beverages (think mimosas) without the fear of a workday hangover.
Additionally, expanding brunch hours into late afternoon appeals to customers who wake up late or enjoy all-day brunches. Even weekday brunches have found success in many restaurants, appealing to the increasing population of those who don’t work a traditional Monday-to-Friday workweek.
Focus on the Alcohol
Adding drink specials to your brunch can help bring in thirsty customers—and keep them coming back. Whether your restaurant is strictly beer-and-wine only or you operate a full bar, drink specials are one of the best ways to increase revenue. An easy and popular choice is the bottomless mimosa. Or consider having a Bloody Mary bar; guests (particularly millennials) love the ability to customize their drink options.
If there is a lot of brunch-time competition in your area, consider less traditional brunch-time drinks, like sangria pitchers or margaritas. Zuma, an extremely successful brunch place in Miami, offers guests a variety of unlimited drink options, including martinis, Bellinis, Bloody Marys, sangria, and mojitos. Guests can switch drinks when they get tired of one option.
You can also upsell your brunch-time alcohol options to increase sales. For instance, try offering different tiers of alcohol at different price points, like unlimited mimosas with either bottom-shelf champagne or a nicer champagne. Or you can offer different alcohol packages, such as “Only Unlimited Mimosas” or “Unlimited Mimosas, Bloody Marys, and Sangria,” the latter at a higher price point. By offering more options, you can appeal to a wider variety of guests.
Buffets Are Still In
Though many restaurants have veered away from traditional brunch buffets in recent years, having a buffet at your restaurant can bring a number of benefits. For instance, a buffet, as opposed to an à la carte menu, helps to create faster table turnover (meaning more customers) and reduce labor costs. Best of all, customers love good buffets, as they allow for customization and can feed all types of food cravings.
To set your buffet apart from the competition, try offering a mix of traditional brunch selections and chef-manned stations for made-to-order offerings. This will demonstrate the food’s freshness to your customers and ensure that their food is hot.
Fresh Is Also—Always—In
Homemade, made-to-order, and fresh ingredients are more popular than ever. When designing your brunch, be sure to capitalize on these concepts by offering choices like freshly made fruit smoothies, fruit bowls, and homemade baked goods.
When finalizing your brunch menu, use verbiage indicating the fresh or homemade nature of the menu items, such as house-made, slow roasted, made-to-order, crisp, or garden-fresh. This will grab potential customers’ attention as they decide between different brunch-spot options.
Offer Regional or Exotic Options
Brunch shouldn’t just be omelette bars and breakfast meats. People go to brunch seeking variety. Try offering regional specials or menu items using local ingredients. Depending on your region and clientele, your restaurant could offer options such as sushi and sashimi, or even a ceviche station.
If your restaurant doesn’t offer a buffet, you could incorporate ethnic flavors into your menu, for instance by adding huevos rancheros or bacon-and-egg fried rice.
Let’s face it, one of the best ways to boost restaurant traffic is to offer a deal. When starting your brunch service (or trying to boost brunch sales), offering a promotion is a fast and easy way to do so. Consider deal sites like Groupon, or for high-end restaurants, try Gilt City. While these sites may not be the best for initial profit margin, they do get customers in the door, and they provide an opportunity to turn new customers into regulars.
A more cost-effective alternative to popular coupon sites is to promote brunch specials via social media or through newsletters. Want to reach more customers? Try boosting your posts on Facebook. You don’t have to spend much to get attention from people in your area.
Posted: Jan. 11, 2016 | Written By: Hannah Dietz