The pandemic has been har on Chuy’s as same-store sales declined 19.8% in the third quarter ended Sept. 27. Chuy’s is not the only company reeling from the ever-changing rules that restaurants must comply with even when they can open and a what level of occupancy.
With sales down only 19% during Q3, Chuy’s like all of you has had to evolve fast. So, what lessons did they lean and share. Let’s take a look as we all might be able to benefit.
Without a doubt Chuy’s expects efficiencies gained during the COVID-19 pandemic will extend into operations moving forward. It sounds simple but remember consumers are dynamic not static and if they move you must move with them. It looks today as if the COVID-19 is not going away anytime soon.
Steve Hislop, Chuy’s CEO and president stated, “there is no doubt that the hard work of our teams during the last six months will have a long-term benefit to our operations.” Including testing pay-at-the-table devices, “which will allow our guests to quickly complete their transactions while minimizing any contact point with our waiters.” Customer adoption for service and operational efficiencies improvements are self-sustaining and an incremental brand value according to Johnson.
At Chuy’s off-premise sales, including a deal with DoorDash that began just before the pandemic was declared, have remained strong and are performing at more than double pre-coronavirus levels, Hislop added. He said that is expected to continue. Reducing the menu and the number of menu items and offered family-meal and beverage kits have proven successful.
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