Why you should stock sparkling water, rose prosecco and flavoured vodka
Have a bumper Easter holiday
This year, Easter falls in mid-April (15-18). The days will be longer, the weather warmer and your customers will be ready to celebrate the long weekend, go out and meet up with friends and family. In the UK, 38.3 million people – 73% of the population – celebrate Easter. Last year, pubs and restaurants still faced lockdown restrictions: Easter 2022 will be all about making up for lost time. We’ve compiled a jam-packed guide with ideas, recipes and facts for you to spring into action.
“62% of people in the UK plan to spend money in the Easter holidays.”
Plan, plan, plan
Easter is one of the most lucrative public holidays. Sandwiched between New Year’s Day and the May bank holidays, it’s a prime time for people to get together. Work out your strategy. Get everyone’s eggs in your basket!
Who will be your customers over Easter? Research what’s important to them and why they’re making a booking.
Couples and groups of friends may want to spend Easter Sunday in a quieter environment that isn’t overrun with families. Tempt them in on Good Friday and Easter Monday with bottomless brunches. Easter Sunday is a family time, so check what deals you can off er them. Is your children’s menu up to scratch?
Timing is key
Think about when to start posting about Easter on your social media channels or advertising menus or packages. Use suitable, high-quality images. What can you learn from previous years? When did bookings start to come in? How can you maximise and stagger occupancy across the four days? Your Friday and Monday lunch and afternoon sessions are likely to be busier than usual – do you need to rota on more staff?
Think about upsells
Encourage customers to book early by offering an ‘early chick’ discount.
Put on a children’s Easter afternoon tea (teddy bear or chocolate-themed) or a kids’ club that includes arts and crafts competitions or an Easter egg hunt. To drive incremental sales, extend your Sunday roast lunch to Easter Monday, too.
“76% of people in the UK associate Easter with chocolate eggs.”
Sell, sell, sell
Hot cross buns
Don’t let the supermarkets sell all the hot cross buns (20 million packs are sold at Easter). Serve them as a dessert, with morning teas and coffees or as a takeaway.
Easter egg hunts
This activity is always popular. It keeps the children happy, and adults can enjoy lunch or a drink.
Consider an Easter ‘hoppy’ hour on Good Friday night. You could promote spring-friendly English sparkling wines or create some Easter-themed cocktails:
• Mini Egg martini
• Simnel cake sour
• Carrot mimosa.
According to Insider Pro, the average table turnaround rate is 50 to 80 minutes, with casual dining just below an hour. Speed this up a little during the day and you will maximise revenues. At lunch you can expect a faster turnover but make sure your team keep up with clearing tables and sweep under the table between bookings.
No customer likes to feel hurried or to be kept waiting, so have a space at the bar if customers overstay or arrive early.
Easter afternoon tea
Easter high tea is a great way of filling the void between lunch and dinner. It’s perfectly positioned for a lazy Easter Saturday afternoon or a bank holiday Monday wind down.
Pre-pandemic bookings for afternoon tea increased by 54% between 2016-18 and 20% of the UK population now expect afternoon tea to be a standard offering on the menu.
By 2025, 68% of spending and 14% of volume consumption in the Tea segment will be attributable to OOH consumption (bars and restaurants).
Create an afternoon tea menu to suit both your customers and your outlet. Either go for family favourites, such as our classic recommendation or if your customers prefer something a little more luxurious, follow our guide to step it up.
“96% of all cups of tea drunk daily in the UK are brewed from teabags”
Turn your sarnie into a work of art
Delicate finger-sized slices are great for your classic afternoon tea but if you want to make Instagram-worthy sandwiches, add a few unusual extra ingredients.
Themed or seasonal versions will keep your menu fresh and give customers reason to return over and over again. This Easter, pop chocolate eggs on top of your cakes and serve tiny chocolate hot cross buns.