Asset and Equipment Management in Restaurants

Take Care of Your Equipment -- It Takes Care of You

The following article is a sponsored post.

Independently owning and operating your own restaurant equipment has a multitude of practical benefits, but there are some equipment failures or other problems that require professional help — the sorts of things you might not want to risk attempting yourself. Machinery such as fryers, ovens, and other commercial-grade equipment are essential to any business, and in this article, we will focus on the rental, acquisition, care, and maintenance of these back-of-house staples, as well as how to correctly identify when a problem with your equipment cannot be solved without expert help.

Rental and Acquisition of Commercial Equipment for Your Restaurant

Whether you are replacing existing machinery or just starting out in a new location, your acquisition of replacement parts doesn’t need to be difficult. Online vendors, such as 24/7 Restaurant Parts, provide the equipment you need in a timely fashion, all with the click of a few buttons. Because independent owners are often very busy, online shopping for restaurant parts is the advantaged choice. Vendors that specifically sell restaurant machinery and parts are also well-versed in how to package the equipment in a way that ensures it is kept safe and secure, so when you receive your product, it is in good condition.

Care and Maintenance of Assets and Equipment

There are two broad categories of asset and equipment issues and, while there are many subcategories that apply to one business or another, these two main groups are universal. The first category of equipment malfunctions includes problems that can be solved on your own, and the second consists of problems that require professional help so as not to make the situation worse. For example, the Frymaster Frypot comes with a lengthy, detailed instruction manual that contains information on how to clean the Frypot using the “boil-out” program after filling the machine with a mixture of cold water and detergent. This kind of equipment maintenance is often simple and not overly complex. Detergent is an inexpensive, easy-to-obtain household product. A messy Frypot can be solved on your own, no professional help required, but the second is a little bit harder to identify, but vitally important to be able to recognize. The simple replacement of high-wear parts may, likewise, be a relatively simple matter.

But, of course, this isn’t always the case.

Product Maintenance

Caring for your commercial-grade equipment, whether rented or purchased, is not something that can be done in a stagnated or languid fashion. Consider your restaurant machinery, right down to the nuts and bolts, as an investment that requires daily maintenance and vigilance. This is not just for practical purposes, but also for safety reasons as well. Often, product-related accidents are a result of inattention on the part of the owner. For example, commercial fryers come with a vent that diverts carbon monoxide into the vent hood so as to prevent the poisonous gas from escaping. The malfunction of this safety feature, whether due to rust or common wear-and-tear, can be disastrous and incredibly dangerous. Fires and other restaurant-related tragedies might be avoidable by performing a daily appraisal of how well your equipment is functioning and whether something needs attention or replacement.

When to Call for Professional Help

The key to knowing when you’re out of your depth is when you find yourself either wildly guessing the right way to fix something. When you get to the point of thinking “maybe if I try this…” or “I wonder if this will help” it might be time to step away, for fear of putting a critical piece of equipment in further danger. For example, if there is a jammed switch, banging on it with a hammer can easily cause far more damage to the product than was there before you tried to fix it. The more extensive the damage, the costlier a mistake made while attempting to fix it is likely to be. It will likely save you more money to have a specialist look at the problem with an expert’s eye than to place the equipment — and yourself — at further risk.

Back-of-house staples, such as fryers, ovens, and freezers are vital to the success of your business. Treat them like an investment and take care of them through regimented daily routines as indicated in the equipment documentation can go a long way towards protecting and prolonging the life of your restaurant. The tools of your trade take care of your business every day, and as an owner, you owe it to your business to return the favor. Rely on the documentation and rely on your training and experience, but if these are found lacking, rely on a professional repair specialist.

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Becoming an Online Merchant: 4 Tips to Find the Perfect Product to Sell

Becoming an Online Merchant: 4 Tips to Find the Perfect Product to Sell

E-commerce is a booming industry and will only continue to grow in the coming years. That’s why it’s not so surprising that there are plenty of people who want even just a small slice of the proverbial pie.

But whether or not you are looking to establish a full-blown online store or would simply want to supplement your income by buying and selling items on the side, you have to pick a product to sell that would, well, sell.

With the right marketing strategy, one can argue that anything and everything can be sold online. However, the real challenge is finding a product that is conducive to success. How do you find that product? Here are a few pointers.

Finding The Ideal Product to Sell

1. Target Hobbyists and Collectors

You’ll be surprised by just how much money hobbyists and collectors are willing to spend to fuel their passions.

If you have a knack for finding rare items, you’ll be a big hit with collectors. Whether they’re interested in action figures and toys, lapel pins, first edition books, stickers, sports cards, or even antique dinnerware. Just make sure that everything is legitimate.

Meanwhile, there is no shortage of hobbies on which people willingly invest their time and money.

Some of the more popular ones include biking, fishing, knitting and crocheting, calligraphy, model building (including radio-controlled vehicles), and handicrafts. Look for a leisure pursuit where you can act as the product-based solution and you’ll easily enamor yourself to these customers.

2. Something Hard to Find or Can’t be Bought Locally

There are some things that can be easily found in a local grocery store or a specialty shop — say gardening or baking supplies. But what about specialty foods, magician’s accessories, eco-friendly products, and fandom items?

Most likely, people will go online to find these. You can enlist the help of Google Trends and Google Keyword Tool to get a glimpse of what kinds of products people are searching for online and use the results as a guide to pick a niche product to sell.

You can also try to sell products that can’t be bought or difficult to procure locally, like Japanese Kitkats, the “three-story” alfajor Oreos, or Asian beauty products. The latter, in particular, is a good place to start since a lot of products are only available in select countries or regions but are available through wholesale Asian cosmetics websites. Do the hard work of sourcing these products (and offer them at reasonable prices) and see just how much your customers will love you.

3. Star with The Accessories Before The Big-Ticket Items

When people buy big-ticket items such as 4K TVs, high-end smartphones, and gaming laptops, they buy them only once. Their next purchase of these kinds of products will probably be in the next two to three years.

These are big investments, after all, and people are much more reluctant to spend huge amounts so often. However, accessories are much more common purchases and people are relatively more agreeable to spending more often on these items. Especially when they’re meant to increase the performance or ensure the longer life of the bigger product.

Think about HDMI cables and switchers for TVs, charging cables and power banks as well as cases and protectors for smartphones, and gaming accessories like a mouse, a keyboard, and a good pair of headphones.

If you already sell the big-ticket items, then it’s a wise decision to add the accessories to your online catalog. If you’ve yet to choose what to sell on your online shop and/or you have a limited capital, you should consider selling these kinds of accessories first.

4. Consumables Mean Customers That Keep Coming Back

Consumables mean that you will have a steady customer base and a rather reliable revenue stream. What’s more, when people need to order products from you regularly, it’s much easier to build a loyal customer base.

Think about specialty cooking ingredients (Himalayan pink salt, anyone?), supplies for arts and crafts, and even cosmetics. Just make sure you’re able to deliver each and every time, since you don’t know when your customers will run out of their stock or order in bulk in advance.

Of course, choosing which product to sell is just one part of a thriving online business, since you should also take into consideration the demand, potential competition, and reliable suppliers, among others. However, it’s also undeniable that finding a saleable item is a huge contributor to your business success. Good luck on your journey as an online entrepreneur!

If you're into ecommerce, you might be wondering what product to sell on your online store. Here are 4 great ideas that are sure to make you money and bring you loyal customers: #ecommerce #onlinestore #makemoneyonline #sidehustle