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View Full Version : How can you compete with prices like this?


BriarPatch
12-15-2009, 11:34 AM
:icon_sad How can you compete with prices like this?

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Garth57
12-15-2009, 11:45 AM
Must get their food donated to them.

Ryan Chester
12-15-2009, 11:47 AM
Price ain't everything if the food sucks. In most cases, you get what you pay for.

E Mellow
12-15-2009, 11:49 AM
I would try before you buy in this case, somethings gotta give with prices that low.

timzcardz
12-15-2009, 12:01 PM
First, if you arew going to compete on price alone you will run yourself into the ground.

Second, notice the word "Starting" in the pricing. Purchase for 1,000 people at $5.25 and you get "Little BBQ Sandwiches." How little? How many??


Come on, you'd take selling that deal. Just provide 2000 little sandwiches for $5,250 dollars. It's a slam dunk. No plates, no napkins, no muss, no fuss. just "little sandwiches" like it says.


Oh, you don't want this meat, OK that will be more then.


Oh, only $50 people, that will be $9 per person.




Classic bait and switch.

Jacked UP BBQ
12-15-2009, 12:21 PM
There is no way they are selling to a party of 75 for $7, call for pricing, you will see. Also to feed 1k people for 5200 with pork and some salads, you could do alright for drop off.

Bamabuzzard
12-15-2009, 12:22 PM
I don't know how they do it unless like mentioned above it is a bait and switch type deal. I do know though there is a bbq joint where I live that only charges for their sammiches (beef, pork,ham, sausage or turkey) right at $5 per plate and that includes two sides. I don't know how they make money off of the deal. The place is called Blue Moon BBQ. It's amazing. I've never eaten there but people talk about how inexpensive it is. Even if the food sucks how can they be making money on each plate they serve at only $5? That's amazing. :shock:

Ford
12-15-2009, 12:47 PM
Sides - 4 sides = 2 oz each. Beans #10 can =50 servings and it costs about $5 for a can. Just warm it. You can do sides for 50 cents and then a small bun for 12 cents or less and then pork and use 3 oz for that small bun. I can buy ingredients for under a dollar. Now there's no way I'd sell sides out of a can but you sure could.

Also if it's 1000 guest price then it goes up as #'s go down. So $5,000 revenue, cost $1,000 plus incedentals = maybe $2,000 tops. Make 3K. Sounds OK to me if I want to be a bottom feeding low quality kind of business who isn't looking for repeat business unless it's all cost driven.

I wouldn't offer more than 2 sides for a meal and I'd have high quality and I'd charge more. I wouldn't try to compete with this. If a customer showed me this ad I'd say go ahead try it. I won't sacrifice quality for price.

Ford
12-15-2009, 12:53 PM
There's lots of BBQ restaurants out there selling beans from a can. macaroni from a package just add water, potatoes from a package just add water. All these things cost 10-15 cents per serving, take very little prep time (just boil water) and an hour to cook. They throw unseasoned butts in a cooker using all gas to cook with no wood then pull and add 25% water then add sauce and sell by 4 oz portions. Over 25% is added liquid and it's easy to do. It's easy to sell cheap if you want. Most people here take pride in what they sell and to compete we have to stress quality. So those mashed taters from a package become twice baked by adding a little butter, cheese, green onions and then go back in the smoker for flavor. More labor and cost but a far superior product.

TN_BBQ
12-15-2009, 01:37 PM
Don't compete on price. You can't win doing it that way.

Therefore, you've got to compete on value.

Think about it. Does EVERYTHING you own come from the lowest cost provider? Nah. Sure...lots of folks look only at cost for some things, but there are plenty of folks out there that don't use cost as their only decision making variable.

Bamabuzzard
12-15-2009, 01:42 PM
Hey, thanks for that information. I didn't know that. That's pitiful. But I guess some folks don't care much about quality anymore.


There's lots of BBQ restaurants out there selling beans from a can. macaroni from a package just add water, potatoes from a package just add water. All these things cost 10-15 cents per serving, take very little prep time (just boil water) and an hour to cook. They throw unseasoned butts in a cooker using all gas to cook with no wood then pull and add 25% water then add sauce and sell by 4 oz portions. Over 25% is added liquid and it's easy to do. It's easy to sell cheap if you want. Most people here take pride in what they sell and to compete we have to stress quality. So those mashed taters from a package become twice baked by adding a little butter, cheese, green onions and then go back in the smoker for flavor. More labor and cost but a far superior product.

Spydermike72
12-15-2009, 01:59 PM
I had a Rib City Grill in town this past year that took alot of my catering jobs because they were doing a half a rack of ribs and chicken with 2 sides for $9.99 per person. Well I found out they were doing danish babybacks and chicken legs for that price. They recently closed their doors and I have seen an increase in inquiries...

Captain Dave
12-15-2009, 06:56 PM
Let em price it low. They know what their product is worth.

This Is How We Que It
12-15-2009, 08:12 PM
Buy low, sell high!

big range bbq
12-15-2009, 10:00 PM
It's kind of like the car ads "one at this price" in small print. By putting out ads like that they double the calls they get, its the numbers game. "Steak dinner (dine in only) $3.99 Table is $34.99" add or change one thing and they punish your pocket book. The problem is people see this and tell us "I can get it here for $$$". I just recently learned this lesson people that say "I can get it here for $$$" are people you don't want to deal with cause in the end you lose some how lol. And 90% of the time their food sucks

ABQ
12-27-2009, 08:49 PM
I don't know how they do it unless like mentioned above it is a bait and switch type deal. I do know though there is a bbq joint where I live that only charges for their sammiches (beef, pork,ham, sausage or turkey) right at $5 per plate and that includes two sides. I don't know how they make money off of the deal. The place is called Blue Moon BBQ. It's amazing. I've never eaten there but people talk about how inexpensive it is. Even if the food sucks how can they be making money on each plate they serve at only $5? That's amazing. :shock:

I tried them out, would not ever go back not even if I were paid to.

There's lots of BBQ restaurants out there selling beans from a can. macaroni from a package just add water, potatoes from a package just add water. All these things cost 10-15 cents per serving, take very little prep time (just boil water) and an hour to cook. They throw unseasoned butts in a cooker using all gas to cook with no wood then pull and add 25% water then add sauce and sell by 4 oz portions. Over 25% is added liquid and it's easy to do. It's easy to sell cheap if you want. Most people here take pride in what they sell and to compete we have to stress quality. So those mashed taters from a package become twice baked by adding a little butter, cheese, green onions and then go back in the smoker for flavor. More labor and cost but a far superior product.

Bigmista
12-28-2009, 11:01 AM
You don't compete with them. You continue to put out a quality product and wait for them to go out of business. It will happen. And anybody that would go for that deal is not the type of customer you want. Most discriminating customers will want to taste your food before committing several hundreds or thousands of dollars for a party. Those are the customers you want.

Bamabuzzard
12-28-2009, 12:31 PM
The best thing I've heard about them is "They're okay". That's the best compliment I've heard from anyone that's eaten there. I will still visit it myself. Though my expectations continue to lower...

Have you eaten at the Silver Star Smokehouse or Country Tavern? If so what are your thoughts on them?


I tried them out, would not ever go back not even if I were paid to.

NotleyQue
12-28-2009, 02:13 PM
You don't compete with them. You continue to put out a quality product and wait for them to go out of business. It will happen. And anybody that would go for that deal is not the type of customer you want. Most discriminating customers will want to taste your food before committing several hundreds or thousands of dollars for a party. Those are the customers you want.


Exactly what Neil said.

tony76248
12-28-2009, 02:20 PM
The deal is you can make money selling at those prices. Do they have a restaurant too? You may never get rich and if you are frugal you can do pretty well too. Perhaps they cook these jobs to offset the cost of running a restaurant. I would bet $10 that most of the folks on this forum cater jobs at about the same profit margin as this guy you mention.

I can tell you cooking for the masses is an art. Plus if you can keep it cash and carry, that is a lot of unreportable income. Do you ever wonder how those little asian donut shops do it?

You definitely can't compete with these folks unless you really have to. If you know that either you do it this way or you eat a lot of beanie-weinies, then you might do it to keep your kids in shoes.

Don't assume that the guy isn't making some cash and if someone says the food is "okay", that is a lot better than bad. I cater throughout the year and try to charge appropriately. To be honest with you I don't think I ever make enough money at the end of the day. While it isn't my main job, I still like to make a profit of $1k for each day. You need to consider wear and tear on the pit, fuel, and misc that will eat you up. I keep a spread sheet on everything and try to keep fine tuning it with very job and at the end of the day, that $1k profit still might not be etched in stone. For me that is what it takes to make the jobs worth my time though even if it is a hobby.

If you want more money, more headaches but less profit get out of BBQ catering. All that said, BBQ is still at the bottom of the catering food chain. It aint prime rib and lobster but it is very forgiving.

There are a bunch of variables here and I see these posts all the time on this forum and others and very few folks here cater for a living so we just speak our opinions and really don't know all the facts. Sad but true.... LOL

ABQ
12-28-2009, 05:10 PM
The best thing I've heard about them is "They're okay". That's the best compliment I've heard from anyone that's eaten there. I will still visit it myself. Though my expectations continue to lower...

Have you eaten at the Silver Star Smokehouse or Country Tavern? If so what are your thoughts on them?


No, I haven't yet. With Blue Moon though, there sides seemed like afterthoughts, very bland. There meat was extremely dry and had no flavor except a taste of meat being re-heated again and again. This was in July, maybe they're better now.

As for competing with prices, I agree with Bigmista.

Bamabuzzard
12-29-2009, 09:27 AM
This is what pisses me off about most BBQ joints. Or at least the ones here in Shreveport and the surrounding area. The quality of the sides suck. Even the Silver Star Smoke House (which I consider one of the best in Shreveport/Bossier area) goes low end on their sides. I know this for a fact because my buddy smokes the meat. He said their bbq beans are nothing more than ranch beans out of a can with a touch of a store bought seasoning salt. Most of the time the most disappointing side items are slaw and bbq beans. I wish these places would put more love and care in their sides.


No, I haven't yet. With Blue Moon though, there sides seemed like afterthoughts, very bland. There meat was extremely dry and had no flavor except a taste of meat being re-heated again and again. This was in July, maybe they're better now.

As for competing with prices, I agree with Bigmista.

tony76248
12-29-2009, 12:08 PM
Like I said, BBQ is the bottom of the foodchain. Well maybe tied with chinese buffet joints. That said, it's not just BBQ restaurants that use canned veggies, almost all do. Canned beans are a 1/10th the hassle to prepare than dry beans are so why wouldnt they? Plus the italian green beans, just add some onions garlic and bacon. BBQ just happens to be very basic and forgiving which includes the sides. That is the beauty of BBQ, it's easy flavorful and highly profitable.

The thing that pisses me off about a BBQ joint is when the meat is slightly dry but good overall and you decide to add the sauce and the sauce turns out to be total crap. You say to yourself "isn't there a store bought sauce that would have worked?"

Bamabuzzard
12-29-2009, 01:12 PM
Most sides I taste at bbq joints are bland and just plain slung together. I wonder sometimes do these people even taste what they're serving when it comes to slaw, bbq beans and tater salad. I understand the time factor and needing to have things that are quick and easy. No one is asking for "made from scratch" but good god is this the best they can do? :lol: I've tasted a many of bbq bean, slaw and tater salad recipes that are as simple as they can be that taste better than most Q joints around these parts. I also think that is why that one owner, local Q joints are better than multi location, franchised like establishments. The one owner "mom and pop" type places take the time to put a little bit extra in what they serve.

It's an old saying but I believe it is very true. The "hole in the wall" type Q joints usually serve the best all around Q.


Like I said, BBQ is the bottom of the foodchain. Well maybe tied with chinese buffet joints. That said, it's not just BBQ restaurants that use canned veggies, almost all do. Canned beans are a 1/10th the hassle to prepare than dry beans are so why wouldnt they? Plus the italian green beans, just add some onions garlic and bacon. BBQ just happens to be very basic and forgiving which includes the sides. That is the beauty of BBQ, it's easy flavorful and highly profitable.

The thing that pisses me off about a BBQ joint is when the meat is slightly dry but good overall and you decide to add the sauce and the sauce turns out to be total crap. You say to yourself "isn't there a store bought sauce that would have worked?"