The weather is beautiful. The evenings are longer and people want to soak it all in while it lasts. For bars and restaurants with a patio, that means a significant increase in business that may require some adjustments. If you haven't set up a strategy for managing the summer crowds, it is time to get your patio ready for summer. In honor of the first official day of summer, here are some tips and tricks to get the most out of this busy season and meet staffing demands.
For bars and restaurants, the importance of establishing inventory management procedures can't be overstated. If you aren't keeping accurate records of what you are selling, then it is virtually impossible to identify problems and make improvements. Without a plan in place, you are blindly running a business and simply hoping for the best. Instead of taking the "by the seat of your pants approach," use these inventory management best practices tips to add a little organization to your bar or restaurant while also increasing profits.
Happy hour can be both a fun time for customers to let loose after work and take advantage of some drink deals and a lucrative window for your bar or restaurant to make some extra money and build a reputation. It doesn't take a lot of effort to transform what can be a quiet time of the day into one of your busiest. With a little planning, your location can become an after-work destination that helps people relax after a long day. Here are just a few things you can do to create a more compelling happy hour experience:
If you are unfortunate enough to go through a sales tax audit of your bar operations, you’ll be required to pay sales tax on drinks you never sold.
With the start of the brand new year just behind us, it's not too late to think about resolutions on how you want to improve and be a better manager in 2018. While there is never a bad time to set new goals, the beginning of the year provides the perfect time to reflect and gather yourself after surviving a busy holiday season. If you aren't sure where to start, here are some smart resolutions that will help you become a rockstar bar manager in 2018:
Every day Americans spend over $2 billion in restaurants; yet, every day, restaurant and bar owners and managers see profits narrowed from spillage, food waste and bad hires.
You may let a sleeping dog lie, but you’re going to want your alcohol to move.
No matter how successful your bar is, chances are if you look through your inventory, you can find some dead stock—and you may be scratching your head as to how to get it off your shelves. Loosely defined, dead stock is a product that takes over six months to deplete.
Bars and restaurants have a notoriously high turnover rate, but that doesn't mean that you can't attract and retain top talent who will become a selling point for your establishment. If you are competing with other bars in the area to win over the best talent and consistently losing out, it may be time to consider a different approach. For starters, don't be so hard on yourself. Certain bartenders may be more drawn to the environment of a swanky rooftop bar versus a venue with more of a neighborhood bar feel.
August is notoriously a slow month in the restaurant business. People are on vacation and spending more time grilling out in their own backyards. While there are ways to try and increase traffic to your restaurant, you can also adopt the strategy of working to get the most out of the customers who do stop by. Training your staff to upsell items is an easy way to drive up the check average and increase sales during slow periods. With a little training, your team can become experts salespeople, which will also translate into bigger tips for them.
Unless your restaurant is located in a busy summer vacation destination, July and August can be notoriously slow months. People are busy traveling and enjoying the weather with backyard barbecues instead of eating out at their local restaurants. While you might not be able to drastically increase traffic to your restaurant, there are some steps you can take to bring in more patrons during this slow season.
For those who haven't ever worked in a bar, it can be all too easy to assume that owning or managing an establishment is just one big party. Everyone just hangs out and does shots with customers, right? You know better. In fact, you have probably spent hours in the stock room counting bottles for inventory long past closing the door behind your last patron.
Today we are going to go over one of the most important steps in bar inventory analysis for all bar and restaurant owners.
What’s a good number? I can’t begin to tell you how often I get the question. In our day-to-day operations, or out and about, at a convention, even at a party. When someone finds out what I do, they ask “What’s a good number for (blank)?” I also get inquiries from operators, owners, industry people and vendors. So here are some of my answers to the more commonly asked questions.
There are two kinds of bar managers in this world: those who encourage the free pour and those who are wholeheartedly against it. While each side of the argument certainly has some valid points, a lot of it might just come down to proper training. The free pour is a skill that needs to be practiced and perfected so that the drinks still taste great, customers are happy, and the bar is still turning a healthy profit.
Bar Practices: The Best and the Worst
A well run, profitable bar reflects a disciplined code of conduct. When you establish a clear set of rules and expectations, you set the scene for success. When you communicate your expectations both verbally and in writing, you’ll leave no room for doubt. You’re also able to create a benchmark for performance measurement, incentive programs, staff rewards or disciplinary action.
Even small expenses can add up over the course of a day as your bar or restaurant pours hundreds of drinks and serves countless meals. From putting fewer nuts and berries on salads to not salting pasta water to preserve the life of pots, some businesses are more than happy to cut corners if it means more profit. While sacrificing quality in the name of savings may be a short-term solution, you will have a lot more to worry about if customers stop coming to your establishment. Fortunately, there are some ways how top bars and restaurants cut costs while ensuring quality isn't impacted, that will not only preserve existing customers, but work to increase the number of patrons.
Introducing a new menu or running a new promotion can help reduce sitting inventory and increase sales, but how do you know just how successful your efforts have been? It is important to identify and use Key Performance Indicators to measure whether you are getting the most out of your time and money.
A great mixologist will bring plenty of creativity to their drinks, but they can make even more profitable cocktails by using a little bit of data to further inform their ingredient choices. While it may sound counterintuitive to argue that crunching numbers can be a tool for creativity, today's technology allows these two areas to blend seamlessly. Before you put together your next drink menu, here are some ways you can be more strategic about designing delicious drinks.