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How Bars & Breweries Can Maximize Sales Online and Off This Spring

By leveraging online ordering and safe, on-premise contactless dining, bars and breweries can maximize sales this spring

A woman pouring a beer behind a bar

Just as restaurants across the country have had to adapt their operations due to COVID-19, bars and breweries have too. Direct online ordering systems now empower them to capture and manage orders for pickup and delivery while also housing contactless dining abilities that streamline operations and boost sales. But it’s not just all about having solutions in place. Bars and breweries can harness the increasing demand from guests for safer on-premise happenings and take their online offerings to the next level.

Offer Safe, Contactless Dining to Turn More Tables and Boost Sales This Spring

As we wave goodbye to a tough winter, spring weather is starting to add sweet positivity to the air. Along with it, consumers will be inclined to get outdoors and participate in on-premise dining and drinking. But before things get back to normal, businesses and consumers both need to remain vigilant and adhere to safe practices when out and about.

Guests safely enjoy a few drinks outside of a brewery

Guests safely enjoy a few drinks outside of a brewery

One way that bars and breweries can enact a safe drinking environment this spring is by implementing contactless technologies into their on-premise operations. These solutions provide simple and safe transactions and reduce interaction between staff and customers. Guests can simply scan QR codes placed on tables to browse menus, order and pay — all on their mobile devices. For bars and breweries, this allows for a safer on-premise environment and streamlines operations.

How Contactless Dining Drives More Revenue and Streamlines Operations

 A graphic of how BentoBox’s contactless dining technology works

 A graphic of how BentoBox’s contactless dining technology works

With good news on the vaccination front and warmer temperatures, bars and breweries should expect to be busy. Contactless dining is a no-brainer solution for bars and breweries as people begin venturing out more. Dine-in Ordering eliminates those high contact, manual touchpoints such as taking orders, and closing checks. Interactions between servers and guests become more purposeful, deliberate and focused. 

Contactless dining also helps bars and breweries turn more tables, seat more guests and subsequently boost on-premise sales — a win-win. And as the health and safety of both staff and guests are (and will continue) to be a top priority moving forward, technologies like these will promote peace of mind with on-premise guests, encouraging them to become repeat visitors. 

The best part is that solutions like Dine-in Ordering come free with Bento Ordering so that all orders, whether on-premise or to-go can be captured and managed in one place — the BentoBox backend

Bars & Breweries Can Shake, Mix and Pour To-Go

Online ordering has become a saving grace for restaurants, bars and breweries across the country. But in order to help many hospitality businesses survive the pandemic, local city and state governments have also relaxed alcohol laws around alcohol pickup and delivery, as well as off-premise to-go orders. Having the ability to offer goods directly online has changed the game, and guests are equally capitalizing on these new offerings. They’re finding that ordering takeout drinks online is simple, quick and an additional way to support their favorite neighborhood spots. The future of the trend looks promising even after COVID-19, so bars and breweries should look ahead and continue to capitalize on it.

New Holland Brewing Co. sells cocktails to-go online

New Holland Brewing Co. sells cocktails to-go online

But keep in mind, while many are advocating for the permanence of these loosened restrictions, the boom in sales hasn’t come without some negative consequences — so be sure to follow local laws and regulations and choose delivery fulfillment partners carefully. MultiState put out a digestible map on what states have allowed for the off-premise sales alongside home delivery. 

A Powerful Solution for Bars and Breweries: Direct Online Ordering

For operators, offering goods for sale online is a powerful new way to drive off-premise revenue. By offering online ordering for pickup and delivery directly through the website, guests have a simple way to directly support their favorite local spots and engage more with their favorite brands. Secatogue Brewing Co. is a great example of how robust and on-brand direct online ordering can be.

Secatogue Brewing Co. sells their beer via online ordering through their website

Secatogue Brewing Co. sells their beer via online ordering through their website

From 32oz Growler Cans like “Big Duck Energy,” an Oat Whip IPA, to a large collection of branded apparel, Secatogue Brewing Co. has used direct online ordering through their website to drive beer sales for pickup. For loyal Secatogue Brewing Co. customers, this is an easy way to continue to purchase their offerings during COVID-19 as well as support their business during a difficult period. 

Drive Repeat Orders with Automated Marketing Campaigns Built-in

Additionally, with direct online ordering, operators can showcase their brand by incorporating their logo and the ability to add a banner image. Operators can also add images for each item which promotes more conversions. 

Online Ordering for 8one8 Brewing. features a banner with its logo

Online Ordering for 8one8 Brewing features a banner with its logo

There is also the unique opportunity to sell more than just food and drinks through online ordering. Custom merchandise and even bar tools are great additions. The Chicago Spirit offers an entire collection of professional bar tools including shaker sets, mixing glasses, jiggers and more through their website.

The Chicago Spirit sells bar tools alongside cocktails online

The Chicago Spirit sells bar tools alongside cocktails online

For breweries, this is also a great opportunity to highlight and sell new releases. Create a “New Releases” category and feature the latest brews that are offered, and use social media or email channels to send guests directly to purchase from the website. Bars and breweries are also getting behind another trend that’s emerged from the COVID-19 pandemic: subscriptions. Top Hops, an NYC-based barroom and beer shop offers up “The Tops from Ted” — a seasonal beer offering, specially selected for each subscriber. Top Hops offers a variety of plans that include handpicked beers delivered every other week. Subscription services are a great way for operators to receive a steady stream of additional income while offering a unique way for consumers to engage with the business, increasing brand loyalty.

Want More Loyal Customers? Introducing Repeat Rewards, a Customer Loyalty Program

Simple to Manage. Orders Live in One Place.

Bars and breweries can manage live orders simply by computer, tablet or mobile device. The Bento Ordering backend (above) highlights live, incoming orders. Operators can adjust menus for multiple locations and apply necessary criteria like the number of items in inventory, manage sold-out items, set operating times and more.

The Bento Ordering backend where operators can manage incoming orders

The Bento Ordering backend where operators can manage incoming orders

From Search to Checkout, The Guest’s Journey Starts Online

Guests have long been using search engines and social media platforms to research new openings and local bars and breweries in their area. Whether they’re visiting a new city or looking for a date spot, Google is the first place that diners start. That means that bars and breweries must claim their Google My Business (GMB) accounts and have them up-to-date. Why? GMB showcases all the important information, distilled down for those doing the search. This includes a quick rundown of the business type, hours of operations, address, reviews, photos and any online ordering platforms they partner with. The most important part? Each GMB profile also links directly to a business’s website. Learn the 10 ways to optimize your Google My Business listing.

Search results for “bars new york city” and the Google My Business profile for Death & Company

Search results for “bars new york city” and the Google My Business profile for Death & Company

Promote Offerings Across Channels to Drive More Orders and More Revenue.

The website is a bar or brewery's digital storefront and it’s where potential customers are visiting to learn more about the brand. Websites of today are more powerful than ever for bars and breweries to drive revenue to their business. While the website captures orders and converts visitors into paying customers, finding ways to drive more traffic to the website is the keystone to boosting profits online.

Tiki Chick sells frozen cocktails for pickup and delivery through their website

Tiki Chick sells frozen cocktails for pickup and delivery through their website

One of the most successful ways of maximizing more online revenue is by promoting online ordering for pickup and delivery across social media channels. For bars and breweries, Instagram and Facebook are powerful tools to keep guests engaged and informed about happenings inside and outside the tasting room floor. Posting as frequently as possible (we recommend at least once a day) is a sure-fire way to drive more traffic, more orders and create more loyal customers. Tiki Chick does this to drive more online orders for their to-go cocktails through Instagram.

Tiki Chick promotes to-go cocktail delivery via Instagram

Tiki Chick promotes to-go cocktail delivery via Instagram

The beloved bar promotes its batched cocktails for delivery and even uses user-generated content to repost on their feed. Having guests interact with the brand is a powerful way to increase loyalty and awareness to new audiences. You can read more about user-generated content over at FSR Magazine.

Now’s the Time to Get Started

This spring, bars and breweries have a big opportunity to capitalize online by selling their offerings directly to consumers through the website. And with an increase in on-premise consumption from the changing of the season and positive COVID-19 vaccination efforts, contactless dining will be advantageous and can streamline operations. For bars and breweries who are interested in learning more about these features, sign up for a free online demo today or reach out to your account manager to learn more.

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