Welcome to the second post in our blog series, Outlast the Outbreak. We’re all learning as we go. Our aim with this series is to share stories and experiences from the thousands of retail businesses in the Zenreach network.

Today, we’re sharing some ideas on ramping up the delivery, takeout, and online portions of your business.

Patrons understand their favorite businesses are being hit hard right now. They want to support them—and besides, good food and retail therapy are among the things people can still enjoy when a lot of other comforts are limited. 

Stay in touch with your customers

As we discussed in our first post, it’s crucial that you communicate with your customers about the changes you’re making as you manage through the outbreak. Let them know that you’re doing deliveries and accepting take-out orders, and tell them about the steps you’re taking to keep them safe and healthy. For example, you can talk about your modified store hours, curbside pickup/leave-at-the-door options, or the additional hygienic practices you’re implementing.  

Use all available channels to convey this information: social, digital, website, email, etc. And make sure any paid campaigns you’re running are relevant to how your business is currently operating.

For example, here’s a social post from Brixx Wood Fired Pizza sharing information about their modified offerings and enhanced sanitation measures.

Offer deals and lower barriers

Providing incentives is a great way to drive business during the outbreak. You can even team up with other local businesses. For instance, you could offer a discount to customers who spend a certain amount or provide deals to customers who patronize other local businesses. (An example: guests can get a percentage off their bill when they show a recent receipt from another local store.)

One of our partners, Lunchbox.io, recently launched a new site encouraging people to support local businesses by purchasing gift cards—and made it easy to do so by consolidating everything in one place

Be strategic with offerings

An additional move to consider is limiting your menu offerings to optimize for delivery and pickup business, and to cut down on inventory loss. Also think about adjusting your menu for value pricing with things like family-sized and prix fixe meals. Lots of restaurants are featuring comfort foods people are likely to seek while they’re sequestered at home. 

Here’s how Sessions, a gastropub in San Francisco, is telling customers about their newly modified menu:

Take advantage of tech

When emphasizing delivery and takeout, make it as easy as possible for your customers to place these kinds of orders. Make sure order ahead and delivery options are prominently displayed on your website. 

One way to do this is to embed a delivery button on your homepage from popular delivery services like DoorDash, Postmates, or GrubHub. Each of these links provides simple, step-by-step instructions on how to implement these buttons on your website, and you can always contact these companies’ customer support for assistance. 

Here’s an example of an embedded delivery button from our client, Andy & Yu’s:

You might also want to set up digital campaigns to drive online purchases of products and gift cards. For example, if you run a coffee shop, consider selling bags of beans or home brewing kits to offload your extra inventory. One of our clients, Strike Brewing, has modified their homepage to emphasize online sales of their beers:

Segmentation in action

This is a particularly good time to align offers with particular customer segments. An example of this would be rewarding frequent/loyal customers with a deal, or providing an incentive for first-time guests. If you’re a Zenreach customer, this is something you can do automatically using our Smart Emails. Our platform allows you to isolate and label segments based on behavior, demographics, or other factors, and then target emails accordingly. Get in touch (contact options below) if you’d like some help working with this feature.

There are a lot of ways businesses are adapting to the new environment. For many of our clients, that means helping each other out and emphasizing take-out and online options. 

And as always, our support team is here to help.

Support site: support.zenreach.com/

Email: support@zenreach.com

Support line: (800) 807-9434

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