Even if your restaurant has successfully reopened, you still need to be prepared for anything. If there’s one thing we’ve learned from this chaotic year, new challenges can appear at any moment. With cases on the rise across the country, reopening plans are being put on hold, and in some cases, being reversed entirely.

Restaurant Business reports that restaurants in Miami-Dade County were ordered to close dining rooms once again. This follows a June 26 statewide order in Florida forcing bars to discontinue the sale of alcohol on premises. In California, prior to the Fourth of July weekend, 19 counties were ordered to shut down dining rooms for a period of three weeks. These counties represent roughly 9.5% of all restaurant sales in the U.S. That’s an absolutely staggering impact on already struggling restaurants.

These setbacks may not be affecting you now, but as cases continue to rise, it’s impossible to know what the future holds. The restaurant industry is more volatile than it’s ever been. Recently released data from Yelp speaks volumes about its current state. 53% of restaurant closures since the beginning of March are indicated as permanent on the popular review platform.

Unfortunately, many of these casualties consist of hard-working independent restaurants. Ming Tsai, owner of restaurant Blue Dragon and celebrity chef, spoke to Yahoo Finance’s The First Trade on the perils that these restaurants are continuing to face. “We may be left with just chain restaurants and fast-food restaurants if the government doesn’t react,” said Tsai.

A recent report from the Independent Restaurant Coalition supports these claims, suggesting that 85% of independent restaurants may find themselves permanently closed without federal funding.

In order for locally-based independent restaurants to survive, they need to be smart, creative, and agile.

Takeout and delivery will continue to be a crucial factor for restaurants. According to Yelp’s data, customer interest in takeout and delivery is still up 148% from pre-pandemic levels, even as restaurants continue to reopen dining rooms. Regardless of how demand continues to fluctuate for your restaurant specifically, you’ll want to make sure your restaurant is adequately prepared to adjust in case you find yourself facing another shutdown order. Like I said, you need to be prepared for anything.

As long as your restaurant’s dining room remains open however, safety needs to be a top priority. For the foreseeable future, safety is going to remain a major concern for customers seeking to dine out. Safety-conscious restaurants will gain customer loyalty. It demonstrates that you’re looking out for your customers.

It’s also important to make sure you’re prepared to consistently enforce safety rules. Not only do you run the risk of alienating customers, violating protocols may cause your restaurant to be closed or faced with hefty fines. Restaurant Business reports that Chicago restaurants will be ordered to immediately shut down when failing to comply with safety measures. Establishments licensed to sell alcohol will be faced with $10,000 fines. Needless to say, that’s probably not a risk any restaurant wants to take.

Succeed With CoGoBuzz

As your restaurant continues to navigate the pandemic, we want to help keep the doors open. With CoGoBuzz, we’re here to foster your success. Our state-of-the-art digital marketing service can help your restaurant build and maintain a strong base of loyal customers, which will ultimately help your restaurant survive.

Our service directly promotes your services to customer mobile devices. Leveraging advanced WiFi, SMS, and Email solutions, CoGoBuzz promotes your restaurant both in-store and out. It comes packed with a fully digital, text-based loyalty program, allowing you to let your customers know what services you’re offering – all with just a simple text. Click here to learn more about CoGoBuzz.

Whether you’re one of our current customers, or you’re interested in joining the CoGoBuzz family, we’re committed to helping businesses affected by COVID-19.

For current customers, we’re providing free text message service, allowing you to send a link to order online, purchase gift cards, and/or notify customers of new hours.

For new customers, we’re offering our hardware at cost, donating our services, time, and covering shipping costs. Prepare for the future with CoGoWiFi Free to collect your customers’ phone numbers. There are no contracts or monthly fees, and we offer unlimited customer data storage.

Message from our CEO

“From pricing to packaging, our mission has always been to provide customers with unbeatable value. That’s why, in response to the coronavirus pandemic, we are seeking to provide the most aggressive offers to help suffering restaurants survive. We believe that half of small restaurants will fail in the year after operations return to normal. The restaurants that survive and thrive will be the ones that win loyalty and focus on bringing customers back over the following year.”

– Steve Gould, CEO

Click here for more details on how we’re handling the crisis.

How is your restaurant preparing for the future? Let us know in the comments.