Fondue Restaurant Survival Strategy to Reopen During COVID-19
The Fondue Conversation
Everyone: There’s no way a restaurant with that business model can survive this pandemic. They’re going to shut down.Anna: Why wouldn’t they survive?Everyone: Because they’re sharing and that would be a big COVID spread issue.Anna: Then why wouldn’t they just create individual fondue entrees instead? Wouldn’t that avoid the COVID spread issue due to sharing?Everyone: *silence* *pause* Hmm………. we didn’t think of that. But, that would be too expensive.Anna: More expensive than paying overhead expenses with no money coming in due to having to be closed?Everyone: *silence* *pause* Maybe they should start doing that then. Why wouldn’t they think of that?Anna: Because they probably don’t know what to do, and feeling overwhelmed.
Figure Out Your Team’s Strength
- Ask each team member what their strengths are. This will determine the role they will play in the growth of your business. Many tend to be students with AMAZING skills. Utilize their talent and have them focus on what they’re passionate about.
- Divide your team up: Indoor Seating, Outdoor Dining, Online Store
- Assign each group their new job descriptions. Have objectives set so you’re all on the same page.
To Reopen Indoor Dining:
- Create individual servings instead of sharing from one big pot, this avoids the issue of sharing and spreading germs.
- Seat every other table (6 ft minimum) per COVID-19 seating protocol
Outdoor Dining – Picnic Baskets (For those celebrating special occasions):
- Buy picnic baskets (partner with a local business that also needs support)
- Include roses (partner with a local flower shop that also needs support)
- Pack to-go food into these picnic baskets
- Include to-go utensils
Not only does this encourage people to get outside to enjoy the great outdoors, but it creates the same sense of intimacy for those celebrating special occasions like birthdays and anniversaries. You support your local businesses who need help, and your customers are grateful that they can still show their loved ones how much they care.
Online Store – E-Commerce Expansion for Gift Fondue Kits and Gift Baskets
Have the remaining 1/3 of your staff focus on the Online Store
- Product Photography
- Content Writers
- Inventory Management
- Shipping & Processing
- Customer Service (Emails/Phone Calls)
Steps to Build Your Online Store
- Trademark your Brand. File through USPTO to protect your branding. If you invent something, consider filing a patent as well. Protect your brand. THIS is everything before you even consider going online.
- Open an E-Commerce Store. I prefer Shopify because it’s user friendly and it’s $29/month
- Have your Content Writers build the Homepage, About Us, Contact Us, Product Policy Page, and Shipping Policy Page
- Have your Product Photographers take pictures of your products with multiple angles
- Have your Inventory team build the Inventory in your online store by adding Products
- What Products to sell you ask? Build your own Fondue kits and Gift Baskets
- Build Collections with those Products you just added
- Have your Marketing/Advertising team advertise on Pinterest, Etsy, Instagram, and Facebook.
- Have your Shipping & Processing team acquire shipping packages/proper refrigeration coolers for shipping perishable items so they can learn how to properly ship products.
- Reach out to your local community, friends, and family during the testing phase. Fix any issues along the way, but make it clear that you are learning as you go. They want you to succeed so they will understand.
- Ta-Da, you just created a new line of revenue for your business, your team members learned new skills, and your commitment to your team will be rewarded immensely. This is how how adapt & build. Now go and reopen your business! You can do this, and if you need more help, reach out to me. =)