How to Grow Sales in a Restaurant in a Hotel

How to Grow Sales in a Restaurant in a Hotel

October 30, 2023
Nathan Baws

Hotel restaurants face the dual challenges of catering flawlessly to in-house guests while driving sufficient external traffic to grow sales and maximize revenues. Relying solely on a captive hotel audience leads to lost profit potential. Savvy hoteliers implement creative strategies across pricing, promotions, partnerships, technology, and marketing to attract local diners and grow restaurant sales.

Offer Dynamic Pricing and Promotions to Grow Sales

Adjust menu pricing down during slower periods to provide value that attracts price-sensitive local diners. Use time-based promotions like daily happy hours or weekend brunches to stimulate lagging periods. Manage pricing to protect base demand.

Spotlight Seasonal and Locally-Inspired Dishes 

Promote new dishes featuring fresh, local ingredients on menus and marketing to convey seasonality and quality—partner with area farms and purveyors. Frequent menu innovation also encourages repeat visits.

Focus on Customer Lifetime Value

Encourage guest enrollment in your dining loyalty program. Mine data on high-frequency diners and their preferences to personalize offers and experiences that nurture loyalty. Identify your best guests and cultivate them.

Enhance Online Presence and Reservations

An intuitive, mobile-friendly website with online reservations and menus makes dining more discoverable locally. SEO-optimized content brings in traffic. Social media spotlighting food and ambiance builds interest. 

Host Special Events and Experiential Dining

Offer immersive dining experiences like prix fixe menus, wine dinners, cooking classes, and specialty food events to create buzz. Consider concerts, DJs, or local music on weekends or slower nights.

Train Staff on Upselling

Educate staff on upselling beverages, appetizers, daily specials, dessert add-ons, and high-margin dishes. Provide incentives for top performers in generating add-on orders and sales.

Gather Guest Feedback in Real-Time

Actively gather customer sentiment and suggestions through table check-ins, surveys, and monitoring reviews. Quickly address any deficiencies and promote wins. Insights inform improvements.

Form Strategic Local Partnerships

Offer dining packages cross-promoted with nearby attractions, shows, hotels, retail, etc. Support local causes to build community integration. Participate in restaurant weeks or community promotions.

Leverage Customer Relationship Management (CRM)

Segment your customer database for tailored email campaigns promoting offers aligned to factors like frequency, previous spending, specialized occasions, etc. Automate personalized messages.

Analyze Performance Metrics and Optimize

Set sales targets then track reservations on the books, covers, average checks, sentiment, promotions ROI, and key metrics. Review frequently to inform strategy adjustments.

Refresh the Menu Regularly

Beyond seasonal changes, review your menu deeply on a quarterly or biannual basis. Assess the sales and margin data of each item to inform menu engineering for profitability. Introduce new dishes in promotions to test appeal before adding them to the menu. Refreshing the menu regularly encourages both new and repeat traffic.

Offer Pre-Theater, Late Night, and Bar Menus

Attracting diners during off-peak periods requires creative offerings tailored to those time frames. Pre-theater packages, bar bite menus, and late-night comfort foods bring in diners during slower business hours.

Grow Sales

Curate Your Restaurant's Story and Brand Image  

Convey the unique story, heritage, and differentiation of your dining venue through the name, interior design, marketing materials, website, staff education, and messaging. This storytelling builds an emotional connection.

Promote Culinary and Service Credentials 

Spotlight your executive chef's background, culinary training, accolades, and potential celebrity appeal: tout service staff certifications, international experience, and hospitality education. Prominent positioning builds credibility.  

Provide Reservation Incentives and Perks

Incentivize reservations with add-ons like complimentary wines, discounted menus, bonus loyalty points or dessert upgrades. This guarantees bookings and checks during slower periods. 

Beyond search and social promotion, advertise in concierge recommendation guides, travel publications, local magazines, city guides, etc. tailored to potential diners visiting or living in the area.

Strategically Manage Online Ratings and Reviews

Actively encourage satisfied diners to post online reviews. Monitor ratings on all channels diligently. Respond promptly to feedback, address concerns, and highlight praise. A strong reputation drives credibility.


The most successful hotel restaurants combine outstanding service and cuisine with innovative tactics to expand their audience, incentivize repeat visits, maximize table utilization and check averages, build local buzz and awareness, and ultimately drive higher sales volumes and revenues. Contact Emersion Wellness to assess your specific opportunities.

By aligning operational excellence with innovative sales and marketing tactics, hotels can significantly expand restaurant revenues beyond just serving in-house guests. Contact Emersion Wellness for expert guidance on boosting your hotel dining profitability.

See Also: What Avenues of Food and Beverage in the Hotel Industry Yield the Highest Revenue?

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