With education, entrepreneur doubles restaurant sales

Discover the story of Gabriela Ribeiro, who invests in constant learning to achieve better results in her business

For many people, preparing a recipe from the internet at home is commonplace. But for Gabriela Ribeiro, this was the kick-start she needed to start a delivery business. It all started when she decided to make potato rosti, a traditional Swiss recipe. “Out of nowhere, I thought: 'why not sell this'?”, he says.

Graduated in Advertising, she had no experience with cooking or entrepreneurship, but decided to put her idea into practice. In November 2016, he started his business in the city of Lorena, in the state of São Paulo. The delicacy was a success and the business grew, so much so that Gabriela bought a trailer and rented land to sell rosti potatoes.

Three years later, she moved to the neighboring city, Guaratinguetá (where she was born) and had to start all over again. Back in the kitchen at home, the former publicist did not lose heart and continued preparing the potatoes that put her in the gastronomic market — and also started selling them on the iFood app. 

But it was just under a year ago that his delivery business took a big turn. “Researching on social media, I found a small commercial location that would fit in my pocket and could be used to set up a restaurant,” says Gabriela. So, the entrepreneur teamed up with Kimberly Souza, her current partner, and together they began the new stage of the project.

“My partner and I renovated the entire place, from cement to paint and wooden counters. All alone”, he recalls. Now, in addition to delivery, they also provide service in the salon. And the menu has expanded: in addition to potato rosti, we now have stuffed, fried and spiralized potatoes… “It’s practically a potato empire”, he jokes.

“Our difference is that customers choose the filling in everything we offer, assembling it the way they want”, explains Gabriela. And that's how the restaurant gained popularity in the city.

After the fresh start, new perspectives

Despite the growth, there was a month in which sales fell significantly. “That’s when I thought something must be wrong,” he recalls. Gabriela then began researching alternatives to improve the restaurant's performance. When exploring the side tabs of the iFood app, she found the iFood Takes Off.

“I was afraid of messing with the iFood menu and doing something wrong, but after seeing the courses my mind cleared up a lot. I did the João Barcelos and I realized that the app doesn't play against restaurants, on the contrary! But we need to learn how to work with the platform. So, I started customizing the menu, leaving it in my configuration”, he reveals.

In sales numbers, the businesswoman has already noticed an impressive improvement. “Today, we have practically doubled the sales average, even with small changes”, he celebrates. “For example: we have vegan dishes on the menu, but that was not clear. Now, with a more detailed description, using keywords, we are able to attract more customers and improve our positioning.”

The changes to the menu were the beginning of a new moment for Gabriela's restaurant, which does not intend to stop studying.

“We see that, to achieve results, constant learning is necessary. Platform updates provide continuous improvement for us, but we need to stay up to date as well. Now that it’s dawned on us that the more we study, the more we earn, we’re not going to stop!”

For the future, Gabriela has plans to go to in-person events about restaurant management in São Paulo, especially to network with other entrepreneurs. In her own business, she is already noticing some trends that she believes are the future of the food sector.

“We see that, even though we have a physical store, the market is moving towards delivery, or the concept 'I'm going'. We are taking these trends to apply to our business, we are going to reduce the number of tables to focus on faster delivery service”, he comments.

Gabriela's big dream? Grow more and more in what has already been built and “have more restaurant units, be able to improve the structure and serve more customers, in the best possible way, and hire more people to work with us”.

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