Is it time to give your pizzeria a makeover?

Large chains refresh their concepts every seven years or so, and independents should do the same to stay competitive.


Q When should I schedule a makeover for my restaurant?


A With a new president taking office next year, changes to the tax code—with a potential impact on your profitability—could be on the way. To prepare, first
ensure that the financial statements you receive from your accountant are current. Next, invest in a National Restaurant Association membership—and a state association membership if available—to receive updates on any proposed laws or tax-code changes on the horizon.

Beyond that, it may be time for a makeover. Larger brands refresh every seven years or so, requiring a substantial investment in leasehold improvements. As an independent operator, you need to keep your concept fresh and exciting, too. Have you adopted new technology, such as online ordering? What about adding iPads or kiosks to better organize your kitchen and decrease customer wait time? Have you considered adding digital signage that automatically changes as you move from lunch to dinnertime, or lets you create and show specials on the fly using a back-office computer?

Have you checked out your competition lately? Visit every pizzeria within a three-mile radius of your location, observe customer experiences and take notes. Pay attention to their use of technology, their Internet presence and how easy (or difficult) it is to get key information about their stores—including menu and pricing—in a single online location.

Do you need to improve the quality of your product? Review the ads in this magazine and consult vendors on how you can take your pizzeria to the next level. Participate in PMQ’s Think Tank ( and ask questions about the best cutting-edge practices, such as online ordering, so you’ll know where other operators are focusing their efforts. Consult a business associate in the chain world—someone outside your geographic area—and ask what they’re doing to improve the customer experience.

Once you’ve identified changes to be made, work with your accountant on costs and pricing and collaborate with your employees to develop a rollout plan that will minimize disruption of your business and maximize the customer experience. Get buy-in from everyone and establish a go-to-market date. Above all, do not let your brand stagnate. Your customers have many dining-out options now, with more on the way. You have to be ready to evolve and grow to stay competitive! 


Edit Module

Tell us what you think at or email.

Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Related Articles

Chef's Corner | An Interview with Mario Rizzotti

Brian Hernandez goes one-on-one with famed chef Mario Rizzotti

Doubling down on delivery at Pagliacci Pizza

With 270 drivers on staff, this Seattle chain shares the keys to exceeding delivery expectations.

What’s Your Story? Il Primo Pizza & Wings, Richmond, TX

Co-owner Si Mendoza details the advantages—and the challenges—of adding a food truck to an existing brick-and-mortar business.

What you need to know about the new tax law

Some new deductions will be available, while others have been taken away.

Recipe of the Month: BBQ Pork Pizza

This recipe from T. Marzetti is sweet, bold, cheesy and guaranteed to satisfy.

Swag with swagger: Feel the brand-building power of logoed merchandising

Experts share their top tips for creating cool pizza swag that customers really want—and getting it into their hands.

The Lost Boys: Building a small-town pizza empire in the Deep South

This pair of best buddies from the Mississippi Delta made their pizza dreams come true—and no one’s more surprised than they are.

5 things pizzeria owners need to learn for Facebook success

Daily posts, boosted ads and video are essential to building an audience on the world’s largest social media platform.

Delivery: Do or Don’t? Behind the wheel at Pizza Shuttle

Delivery accounts for up to 70% of this Milwaukee pizza company’s business, but it isn’t getting any easier.

Tips from the Dough Doctor: Solving the mystery of blown dough

Mastering temperature control and proper dough management are crucial to preventing this all-too-common problem.
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module
Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags