By Peter Farrell
As any Restaurant Consultant London will tell you, when running a restaurant, you need to know
your gross profit margins like the back of your hand – the future of your business depends on it. Why
is this? Because these will eventually dictate how much you pocket.
This doesn’t mean that you can simply raise your gross profit margins whenever you feel like it.
There’s an art to doing it in such a way that your restaurant remains appealing to customers – if you
want to learn more about how to do this, read on.
Reducing Ingredient Costs
One of the quickest ways of increasing your gross profit margins is to reduce the cost of the
ingredients of each meal. That makes sense, doesn’t it – if you were paying £2 for the ingredients of
a £7 burger and you’re now paying £1.5, you’re going to bank more money at the end of the day. But
this isn’t always as easy in practice as it is in theory.
To do this right, you need to make sure that the quality of the ingredients isn’t suffering, or your
customers might not want to return for another meal. Finding better suppliers is a great way to do
this, so it’s integral to shop around – and then keep shopping around whenever you’re stocking up.
Clever Menu Engineering with a Restaurant Consultant London
A cleverly engineered menu is part hard work and part creative genius, and it can help you to raise
your gross profit margins when other avenues fail. By ensuring that you’re keeping your menu items
flavourful and appealing through great cooking and flavour combinations, you can use somewhat
cheaper ingredients without compromising the overall quality of the dishes. This needs to be done
very carefully, however, as getting it wrong can have dire consequences for your restaurant. If you’re
not sure how to do this, get the advice of a restaurant consultant London.
Increasing Menu Prices
While it might not always be possible to do this, one of the simplest ways to increase your gross
profit margins is to increase your menu prices. This is going to have to happen at certain stages of
your restaurant’s life as inflation goes up, but it also needs to be carefully considered so that your
customers continue to see the value in visiting your establishment.
One of the fastest ways to lose money in a restaurant is to waste your ingredients – this is the same
as throwing your money in the bin. Every portion will make a difference to your gross profit margins,
so make sure that you have strong systems in place to reduce any possible waste. This might include
taking steps to reduce portion sizes if they are unnecessarily large, utilising software systems and
portion control in the kitchen to reduce waste and ensuring that you have a culture of waste
reduction within the restaurant so that your staff follow suit.
Maintaining 100% Accuracy on Portion Control
This last piece of advice technically falls under the “zero waste” philosophy mentioned above, but
it’s so important that it deserves its own paragraph. Ask any Restaurant Consultant London and
they’ll tell you that portion control accuracy is one of the smartest ways to increase gross profit
margins, especially for a busy restaurant. It can be really easy for a chef to add a “little more” sauce,
meat, carbs, or veggies to one dish to save time and while this might not seem like a big deal, those
extras soon add up when you’re catering to a few hundred people every day. Over time, you’ll end
up eating into your gross profit margins without any benefit to the restaurant and this is easy to
avoid by maintaining 100% accuracy on portion control.
Increasing your gross profit margins is not only something you do once – it’s an active process that
you’ll be looking at improving every week, which is why it’s important that you not only know how
to do it, but how to do it well.