F&B Strips in Cairo, a Phenomena at Stake
In the light of the current competition and the excessive supply of shopping and dining experiences particularly in the new F&B concepts that are spreading everywhere in Egypt, the options have become too many, making the outing decision bewildering, and making developers compete to bring in new brands in the market to attract footfall.
If we look at strip malls dispersed on the Dahshour road, in 6th of October, and those newly developed on North 90 Avenue in New Cairo, you will understand the sort of challenges they face. Not to mention the spread of shopping concepts attached to the gas stations, where a variety of F&B options and services are made available.
We also need to consider the current economic situation and the devaluation of the Egyptian pound, which has led to a significant decrease in the outings patterns of middle class Egyptians. Youngsters who used to dine out 2 or 3 times a week, have shrunk their activities to once a week, if not less. Families who used to go out once a week, are more inclined to gather in clubs or at home, reducing their outings to once or twice every month; or even opting for cheaper F&B options available in food courts. This has created a real opportunity for new local F&B concepts with lower prices to emerge and thrive.
With this excessive supply, what can F&B strip developers do to maintain their popularity, and increase their footfall? Following are several measures that can be considered to help strip malls thrive and differentiate themselves from the competition:
Unique and Authentic Concepts: Develop unique and authentic F&B concepts that stand out from the crowd. Consider offering specialized cuisines, fusion dishes, or innovative dining experiences that appeal to the evolving tastes and preferences of customers. This can help attract footfall and differentiate your strip from others.
Value for Money: With the decrease in outings and the economic situation, price sensitivity has increased. Focus on providing value for money by offering affordable options without compromising on quality.
Engaging Experiences: Enhance the overall dining experience by offering more than just food. Create engaging experiences such as live music performances, interactive cooking demonstrations, or themed events. This can attract customers and encourage them to spend more time at your strip, increasing footfall and revenue.
Customer Feedback and Adaptation: Actively seek customer feedback and adapt to their changing needs and preferences. Regularly evaluate your offerings, analyze customer reviews, and make necessary adjustments to stay relevant and competitive. This demonstrates that you value your customers’ opinions and are committed to providing an exceptional experience.
Curate a Diverse Tenant Mix: Ensure that the tenant mix within the commercial strip is diverse and complementary. Offer a variety of dining options, including different cuisines, casual and fine dining, cafes, and dessert shops. This creates a more appealing destination for customers and encourages them to spend more time exploring the strip.
Attractive and Functional Design: Invest in creating an attractive and well-designed space that is inviting to customers. Pay attention to the overall aesthetics, seating arrangements, outdoor spaces, and signage. A visually appealing environment can attract customers and make them more likely to visit and stay longer.
Marketing and Promotions: Develop marketing and promotional strategies to create awareness and attract customers. Collaborate with tenants to organize joint marketing initiatives and events. Utilize digital marketing channels, social media platforms, and local advertising to reach the target audience. Offer promotions, discounts, or loyalty programs to incentivize customers to visit the strip.
Engage with the Community: Build relationships with the local community and engage in community initiatives. Sponsor local events, participate in charity drives, or collaborate with local organizations. This creates a positive image for the commercial strip and fosters a sense of loyalty and support from the community.
Ample Parking and Accessibility: Provide convenient and ample parking facilities for visitors. Ensure that access to the commercial strip is easy, with clear signage and well-maintained roads. Easy accessibility encourages more people to visit and increases footfall.
Regular Maintenance and Upkeep: Ensure that the commercial strip is well-maintained and regularly cleaned. Address any repairs or maintenance issues promptly. A clean and well-maintained environment enhances the overall customer experience and encourages repeat visits.