7 Tips for Curbside Pickup for Restaurants

The rise of curbside pickup has been one of the greatest changes in the restaurant industry lately. A study reveals a 22% increase in using curbside pickup for restaurants from April 2020 to January 2021.  Although setting your own curbside pickup operation system isn’t complicated, still, there are several strategies to increase its efficiency and success. Below are seven tips to apply.

1. Create a separate menu

When you dedicate a smaller menu for curbside pickup, your kitchen operations will run more smoothly. As you keep your menu small, stick to the best-seller dishes and make sure they hold up well through long drives. You can also get more creative by offering ready-to-cook meals or family packs to cater to a wide range of customers.

2. Select the right packaging

A major factor in the success of curbside pickup for restaurants is having the food packed in appropriate containers; safely and securely. Bottom line is to make sure hot, cold, and liquid items are all kept intact in their containers at the right temperature. Also, include the basic utensils as many customers may want to eat in their car right away.

3. Get an online ordering system

The easiest way to set up a curbside pickup for restaurants and get customers to actually order is to implement an online ordering system. Surely, you can take curbside pickup orders over the phone, but it’s limiting, time-consuming, and error-prone. A platform like Taker streams all your online orders into your POS so you can begin preparing orders promptly.

4. Have dedicated curbside pickup spots

If your restaurant has a parking lot, it is easy to create a dedicated spot for pickup. If this is not the case for you, for maybe your restaurant is located in a busy neighborhood where there is no parking lot, you may want to get a bit creative. Request permission from local authorities to set up a temporary curbside pickup in front of your restaurant or a permanent one on a nearby street.

5. Provide clear pickup instructions

The goal of curbside pickup for restaurants is to make it easier for customers to get their orders. Customers should know how to place an order on your website or app to be picked up from a curbside. Give your customers a timing estimate of when it shall be ready. To let you know they’ve arrived, customers may text or call your restaurant where a staff member pops the order in their vehicle’s trunk. To minimize contact even further, customers can pay online while ordering.

6. Train staff for curbside pickup

Curbside pickup for restaurants requires the collaboration between kitchen staff and front-of-house staff from monitoring the ordering system all the way to coordinating the handoff of orders. Follow proper food safety and sanitization, limit food handling, provide staff with face masks, gloves, and hand sanitizers while enforcing regular handwashing and surface disinfection.

7. Promote your curbside pickup service The pandemic has accelerated curbside pickup for restaurants which means there is competition in this department. Once all the work is done, and you’ve set up a great curbside pickup operation, it’s time for everyone to know about it. Social media campaigns, online profiles, email newsletters, and in-store signage are all ways to promote your curbside pickup service.