1. The eBay effect
Operations are finding ways to keep big bucks coming in even after shutting their doors for good. Spaghetti Warehouse in Pittsburgh ran an online auction for back-of-house supplies and some decor, and the Four Seasons in New York City brought in over $4 million with its one-day sale.
2. Forgoing the branded app
Chipotle announced plans to update its digital ordering processes via a new website rather than an app, giving customers the option of mobile ordering and payment without having to download anything. But it’s not just Chipotle diverting resources away from colonizing competitive smartphone real estate. Many full-service independents are skipping their own apps in favor of shared platforms such as waitlist management systems that work for multiple restaurants—making them more valuable to customers who only dine in every so often.
3. Capitalizing on crowlers
With delivery’s increasing prevalence, some concepts are using in-house machines to can crowlers—32-ounce tap beers—to bump up off-premise tabs. The Craft Bar in Destin, Fla., offers crowlers from $6 to $15, and Vermont’s Big Fatty’s BBQ sells the cans in its retail space, the Crowler Pit.