Re:Lunch is nearly dead
Well, I'm just one more guy on roadfood, but here's my 2cents.
1. Is it the service?
You may think your service is great, but are you rubbing people the wrong way and not even knowing it? Small business owner that are not totally service oriented are often focused on the bottom line, expenses, etc. That state of mind is not conducive to being warm and friendly
2. Is it the atmosphere?
If your place is primarily a dinner house, maybe the ambience is not good for lunch. Is there a lot of natural light and light warm colors or dark colors and dim lighting?
3. Is it the price?
Do you cost more than the sandwich place? Can you make comparably priced meals?
4. Is it the food?
When I hear tappas, I think olives, cheese, and slightly greasy meats. It doesn't seem healthy. It doesn't really matter if I'm wrong, that's the image I have as a potential customer. Does your menu appeal to today’s palate of healthy eating?
Tappas and Sushi ? I love sushsi, but I used to be a little cautious about where I would get it. I've learned almost anyone can do at least decent sushi, but it took some experimenting and risk taking.
You may need to help your customers SEE YOU differently. You said your family works in the resturant. Are your friends and the friends of your kids willing to tell you what they really think without protecting your feelings?
Try to find the joy in right now. I'm serious about this point. Stress and worry will kill your business and you. No one wants to work with or be around some one whose stressed, bitchy, etc.
You have much to be greatful for. You have a business, something many people are trying to achieve. You have the opportunity to build your business. Although revenues are not their highest, you have enough to hold on, get by. that means you have time to think, change, adapt. You're location appears to have enough traffic to attract more customers. .... if you keep going, I think you'll find a long list of things to be thankful for. And when you take that perspective, new ideas will follow.... maybe just the idea you've been needing.