Served Up: Local Taqueria Changes Up Business During Covid-19.
If you asked local Santa Rosans for recommendations of authentic Mexican food, chances are, many would say Lepe’s Taqueria. Located in East Santa Rosa, owner Eddie Lepe opened the restaurant in 1996 and since has weathered his share of obstacles.
Between a recession, city wide fire, county wide evacuations and planned power outages, owning and running a restaurant during Covid-19 has been hands down, the most difficult.
With the constant rule and regulation changes, checking employees temperatures upon arrival, making sure we have the proper sanitization products and equipment, meat shortages and changing up the layout of our restaurant to accommodate curbside pick up and delivery, it has been round the clock.Eddie Lepe, Owner
Rising Up to the Occasion
Despite the flood of challenges of running a restaurant during a pandemic, Lepe decided to double down and invest in sales drivers that were long overdue to his restaurant.
With an already strong take-out business generated by phone calls or walk in traffic, Lepe’s launched a mobile app through our partner iMenu2Go. The custom app has photos of the menu items with a seamless order check out.
The app’s ease of use has resulted in customers spending 35% more per transaction than they would if they ordered over the phone. Suggested pairings and add on’s are just some of the reasons for this result.
Signage, Sealed and Delivered
In addition to getting the mobile app going, Eddie immediately ordered several signs to place around his building to show that the taqueria was open. In fact, when driving by, there really isn’t any wall that doesn’t include a large sign with the phone number, website or information about their mobile app.
While take out has always been offered at Lepe’s Taqueria, adding a delivery function to their business was new. Shortly after the Shelter in Place began, Lepe’s began promoting free delivery on their social media pages and via the above signage. This was a huge boost to their sales. During the course of the pandemic, Lepe’s has actually hired four additional members to their team.
Curbside Mobile Payments
To eliminate the need for customers to walk inside to the pick up counter, Lepe’s brought in an additional point of sale system to place at the front of the building walk up window. The original one is used for handling orders over the phone. Having two point of sale machines has been instrumental in handling the increased order volume.
Open Door Policy
As if all of that wasn’t enough, Lepe’s has been adding to their outside seating area to allow for social distancing protocols. The interior of the restaurant has also had improvements made so that when restaurants are allowed to open their doors to the inside once again, Lepe’s Taqueria will be ready.
While this has been a ton of work to get through, I’m really happy that we made these additions to our business. Having a mobile app has been so beneficial and will continue to be when the shelter in place is over. Our two point of sale machines has created so much more efficiency its hard to believe I used to only have one.Eddie Lepe, Owner
If you are interested in adding mobile payments, online ordering, contactless payments and more to your business, you can reach out to us here.
To learn more about Lepe’s Taqueria, visit them here.