Your Competitors are Better than You Think They Are

Many restaurant owners enter a market assured that there is no direct competitor to their business or that the existing competitors are terrible and that a new restaurant will effortlessly blow them out of the water.

If only it were that simple ……

There is a reason why a restaurant has survived 3, 5 or 10 years, and has loyal customers.

Perhaps people love the food (even if you don´t).

Perhaps people are accustomed to the service (even if you find it lacking) … or

Perhaps, out of habit, people are just comfortable choosing your competitor.

Whatever the reason, you should never underestimate the competition, especially competition that serves the same cuisine, operates at the same price point or is physically close to your restaurant.

Instead you should visit the competition and take notes of how many customers are there? What are people ordering? What is the staff saying to customers and what are the customers saying?

At the same time, listen to customers in your own restaurant. Do they mention any of your competition during their meal — make sure that staff pass such comments back to you. By trying to understand why your customers also choose your competition, it may give you some valuable insight into how to make your restaurant better.

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