Small businesses all over the country are trying to adapt to the new way of doing business in the times of the COVID-19 pandemic. With dine-in areas closed, many restaurants have adapted by offering curbside pick-up or delivery. Popular local pizza spot LoPiez Pizza is one of these dine-in restaurants that seem to be adapting to the new “normal” with moderate success.
LoPiez Pizza opened its doors to customers in June of 2019. Since the beginning they had to face some challenges beyond their control before they could launch their business. During the spring of last year the Lopez brothers, Andrew and Peter, had to push the opening of their business to a later date because of the Mississippi river flooding in downtown Davenport. Although the floods were bad and delayed the launching of their business, they did not get discouraged. The brothers wanted the Quad Cities to have a great spot where customers can enjoy the best New York-style pizza in town.
“Because I love good New York-style pizza we really don’t have too many places around the QC that serve that particular style of pizza,” Andrew Lopez explained.
LoPiez Pizza gained success among Quad Citians fairly fast and the brothers thought they would not do anything extraordinary and just take it simple for 2020. Unfortunately, “simple” is not the word for the year 2020. The pandemic came and pushed business owners to look for ways to adapt and change. While it might be easier to adapt for pizza joints, LoPiez Pizza was primarily a dine-in business and the brothers had to switch to carry out and curbside.
“We were a dine-in establishment and since COVID we took out all seating and moved specifically to carry out and curbside,” Andrew Lopez shared what they did to keep the customers and employees as safe as possible during the pandemic. “Sanitizing everything, washing hands regularly, and social distancing rules apply inside. We also have a rule where 10 people including staff are around in our establishment. If there are over 10 people then we usually have staff step outside.”
Although they had to adapt Mr. Lopez believes they are doing as well as expected during the pandemic. The brothers are hoping they will continue growing and they are planning to execute what they had planned for the summer of this year.
“We will be out with the food truck this summer and the second location on Brady St should be up and running soon,” Andrew Lopez shared.
This pandemic is pushing businesses to find different ways to do business. Dining in is being replaced by curbside pick-up or delivery. Some businesses are struggling with new ways of doing things while others are adapting and finding moderate success. LoPiez Pizza was opened as a fun dine-in spot where Quad Citians can enjoy the best New York-style pizza in town, but then the pandemic came, and the owners had to change. The Lopez brothers changed the way they did their business and implemented new safety measures that would lower the risk of sickness among their employees and customers. They seem to have found a perfect balance of running and growing their business and adapting to changes the pandemic has brought.
“Be prepared to adjust to anything. Be on your toes and don’t be afraid to try something out of the box,” Andrew Lopez shared his advice to other business owners struggling in these difficult times.