Less is more. Clever money-saving tips for restaurateurs

High energy prices are driving up fixed costs, wage bills are rising along with the price of goods and customers are being very careful about what they spend. Restaurateurs therefore have to set their prices very carefully and think about what changes they can make. These tips can help.

Open. Barista, waitress turns up sign on glass door in modern café

Raw material shortages, delivery problems, rising prices for energy and food – these are just a few of the many consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic and Russia’s war in Ukraine. And the situation is exacerbated by the desperate search for skilled staff and the rising cost of salaries due to the statutory minimum wage. What should restaurateurs do? Their reluctance to pass on additional costs in the form of higher prices is justified, given that customers are also closely watching every penny.

Pass on costs, but how?

One way of earning more on a dish without increasing the nominal price is to leave off the side salad. This saves on the cost of goods, reduces work in the kitchen and is easier to communicate to customers than a higher price for their favourite dish. Menu planning, purchasing and food preparation all offer potential savings for restaurateurs.

More on the topic ofinflation: 10 tips on how restaurateurs can manage their businesses well now

Save on electricity and heating costs

Saving energy helps in two ways: it lowers costs for the restaurateur and it improves sustainability, which is an increasingly important criterion for many customers when choosing a restaurant. One tip that also applies to private households has even greater potential for saving in the hospitality industry, with its use of lighting and kitchen equipment: only switch on the appliances that are needed there and then and avoid using standby mode.

More tips for reducing electricity and heating bills: Energy saving in the hospitality industry.

Clever planning of menus and purchasing

Creating a menu based around dishes that share a few inexpensive core ingredients can save on purchasing. That’s one of the tips suggested by Alexander Nikolay, founder of the sustainable Bäm Food snack bar in Siegen. A second saving effect is obvious: a carefully-designed menu helps to ensure that the kitchen uses more of the ingredients it purchases and throws less away.

And by implementing a few tips on storing food, you can avoid even more waste: Less waste, more taste: the MPULSE fridge guide

Saving time means saving money

At a time when staff are expensive and in short supply, restaurateurs need to do a lot of the work themselves. But then you have to ask how much one hour of the manager’s time or the chef’s time costs and how this time is best spent. Is every shopping trip necessary or would it be better to have some produce brought to the restaurant – for example by using a delivery service? And at what point is it ultimately cheaper to use convenience products such as pre-prepared vegetables?

Good cash flow requires advance planning

Restaurateurs can pay for their supplies upfront as long as they are receiving revenue from paying guests. Cash flow is the principle described by restaurant manager Martin Kajo from Milan. Maintaining this flow of money is always the primary goal. The tip suggested by Fatih Yalcin from Wuppertal is also useful: he says that restaurateurs should always build in a buffer so that they can create provisions for large and recurring payments. In crisis situations, flexible payment terms with suppliers can help maintain liquidit

More flexibility with METRO FS

METRO customers can earn cash from their very first purchase with the FS card. They get up to 1% cashback on their purchases wherever they shop – from METRO wholesale stores to petrol stations – and there is no upper limit. They also decide when payments are debited from their bank account – with flexible payment terms (up to 60 days) or an instalment purchase option (up to 48 months).

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