If you are in the quick serve business, plan for the predicated growth this year. If you do not have a quick serve business what are you waiting for? The National Restaurant Association annual restaurant Industry Forecast released last month predicts that limited-service growth will outpace that of the full-service industry, which is expected to grow 2.9 percent to $201 billion in sales. Limited-service restaurant sales are expected to grow 3.1 percent to $174 billion in 2012.
Hudson Riehle, senior vice president of the NRA’s Research and Knowledge group, said during the webinar the restaurant industry has had and will continue to have a big hand in stimulating job growth, a major concern across the U.S. during this election year. The industry added 230,000 jobs in 2011, while the national economy added a total of 1.6 million jobs.
“When you think about how restaurant-industry performance has related to the national economy, the job growth is definitely higher than the national job growth,” he said.
“Job growth this year for the restaurant industry will be 2.3 percent. That compares to an increase of just 1.3 percent in the national economy.”
Despite this talk of sales growth there are still challenges for the year ahead. Wholesale food prices increased 8 percent in 2011 and continue to increase. Many key ingredients, such as beef, flour, eggs and butter have experienced an even higher increase. Riehle said wholesale food prices are expected to increase 4 percent in 2012.
“From an operator’s perspective, these continued and sizable gains in wholesale food price inflation do obviously put pressure on pre-taxed profit margins, as well as make the focus from an operator’s perspective on productivity, efficiency, and effectiveness much more important,” he said.
One way to help offset these costs is to increase your sales. According to the Forecast 41 percent of consumers are not dining out as much as they’d like. Restaurants need to focus on bringing in these customers to increase their customer base and sales. The new technologies can help you with your marketing efforts.
“It behooves restaurant operators to constantly remain top of mind in consumer decision making,” Riehle said. “You will obviously see more and more operators focusing their efforts on promotional marketing and social media opportunities to achieve that top-of-mind reach.”
Calypso has the technology to help you focus your efforts on promotional marketing and social media. Calypso point of sale systems has intelligence software and hardware systems that enable you to notice your restaurant’s weaknesses and strengths by evaluating your efforts for return on investment. Therefore, with this system, your restaurant is capable of over-seeing where your marketing efforts should take place.
If you are interested in social media and marketing online, whether on Pinterest or Facebook, check out Calypso’s point-of-sale social integration with their SunDrop Mobile platform. Gain the ability to have your offers and coupons broadcast on Facebook and watch is spread virally. SunDrop can be integrated directly into other restaurant software products and includes SMS text message, email and voice in addition to social media communication. Contact Calypso today at 800-771-7100!