Why Lunch is the best Time to Cater to Business Diners

Short Description
At the moment the business diners are only 9 per cent of the overall consumers going to eat out.
  • Nusra Deputy Features Editor
Restaurant India

Business diners are always looking for value for money options and restaurants look at business diners in a very different way. A fine dining restaurants looks at a business diner who can pay more and a casual dining place looks at a business diner as a bunch of people who are coming to have low priced beers and they just want to have snack and go away.

At the moment the business diners are only 9 per cent of the overall consumers going to eat out. There are a lot of people who are going out for business meetings and it’s very popular in hotels and the reason 21% of the fine dining business is coming from corporate or the business meeting diner.

Tickling the Lunch Goers: Lunch has become the popular time for business diners. Lunch goers are generally colleagues who prefer to eat at a restaurant between 12:30 PM to 3 PM.I think that we are in a very different type of a position. The primary reason behind corporate lunch is the speed. People want to get in and out very fast. Also, people want to get out of the QSR format and look for a format which has some sitting arrangements wherein you can talk to your colleague and get little bit of social,” shares Varun Tuli. Managing Director, Yum Yum Cha that does around three churns during lunch.

Discounts or Not: Discounts have gained lots of new customer base for both restaurants and tech-players.  Generally it is believed that any business model is packed on weekends are. But restaurants these days are located at locations where lots of corporate exist. So, the issue is how you tap them.  “My experience so far is that business diners is looking for time and speed and decision. We have designed the choice for the particular time for these diners to make them easy to decide. I want to say ‘No’ but deals attract customers,” says Thomas Fenn, Co-Founder, Mahabelly.

Serving to a larger audience: Multi-cuisne restaurants have always attracted more customers than any other segment. People are secured about the wide variety of options that they can get at the same location.  “We wanted to be a multi-cuisine place and incidentally we became a corporate place. And, when you are catering to a larger crowd you can see people with varied preferences and this actually helped us in corporating bigger tables at locations where we are catering to corporate diners,” adds Sharad Batra, Director, Café Delhi Heights that keeps on adding seasonal menus wherein people can choose it according to the weather.

Co-Working is Cool: There are many restaurants that are betting big on co-working places capturing to the new age diners who want to work from restaurants and cafes. “We have introduced this format at few of our cafes wherein we find have issues with filling up space or not utilizing the seats that we have,” shares Rahul Singh, Founder, The Beer Café who got benefitted from this trick at certain locations.

Choosing the Right Meal: Typically, Indian food is heavy for lunch and hence people prefer lite meal options for lunch. However; sales depend a lot on location. “Ironically, CyberHub Dhaba is always packed for lunch and I think the reason for that is you have a lot of expats visiting lots of offices, lots of clientele who are non Indian. You have a mix of entertaining them and a meal at an Indian restaurant. However, pan Asian foods attract more traction but it all depends on the location,” pointed Kabir Suri, Co-founder, Azure Hospitality.

Hence, we can say that with an additional opportunity that business diners are creating for restaurants, restaurant owners can bet big on this particular segment.

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How Restaurants are Luring Business Diners
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