You’ve got the old family recipe. You’ve got the wood-fired oven. You’ve got the heart and a loyal staff. So why isn’t your pizza place making more money?
Your Oven Doesn’t Have Enough Insulation
Having a wood-fired oven isn’t enough if your insulation isn’t adequate. To get the proper crispy crust, your oven must reach the desired temperature, usually well over 400 degrees. This will also assure even cooking. Don’t forget to preheat the pizza stone, and always use high quality pizza flour and yeast. Avoid putting your pizza in the oven when making the fire and you’ll avoid a smoky flavor, too.
Your Interior Is Uncomfortable
Hard plastic benches, uneven linoleum floors and chipped Formica countertops might bring you back to the 1970s, but it’s definitely not the comfortable experience your customers want. Make sure your seating areas are well-lit throughout the restaurant. Your bathrooms should stay clean and tidy at all times. If you’re doing a total renovation, consider adding an open kitchen design, where your customers can enjoy the sights that accompany restaurant-made pizza.
Your Service Is Terrible
There’s no service like rude service to cement a poor customer experience. It doesn’t matter how delicious your pizza is — if pizza is delivered cold, your counter help is abrupt, or your table service is slow, your customers will remember. They won’t be your customers for long if you don’t quickly turn your service around.
You Don’t Have a Liquor License
If you’ve taken the time to invest in delicious ingredients, nice décor and upgraded service, you might want to consider securing a liquor license. Enjoying a nice glass of wine with a truly gourmet pizza is a relaxing, enjoyable experience — and it assures customers young and old will have a nice time.
Plus, as you probably already know, the markup on liquor is huge. That means you might wind up making more money off wine, beer and spirits than you do off of pizza. If you aren’t ready to commit to a liquor license, at least let it be known that your establishment is a “BYOB” establishment — and provide some candles and glasses for atmosphere.
You’re Paying Too Much for Processing Fees
Your patrons love paying with plastic, but pizza shop payment processing fees can cost a fortune — especially with a ton of telephone orders. Every time a customer pays with a card, your business pays a fee. Although the fees you pay to Visa, MasterCard and other providers are not negotiable, the fees you pay to your processor can vary widely.
Investigate your payment providers thoroughly. Choose one that offers online and hosted online pay, in case you decide to let customers place orders online. Native Merchant Services offers the lowest guaranteed rates in the industry.