More times than not, customers will come into a restaurant and decide on ordering water as their beverage. It may seem like a dollar here and there, however over time, that is a big chunk of change lost towards your restaurant. In this blog, we want to help set you up for success and spark some ideas that you may not already be doing to jumpstart your beverage program at your restaurant.
Know your Customer
Looking at some of your business’ reports and statistics will come in handy regarding this tip. Gathering the data over your customers will allow you to determine what their likes are. With knowing your customer base, you can then determine the types of drinks that will sell well in your restaurant. If you make a guess and do not formulate any research, then you will likely miss the mark on what beverages to provide.
Offer a Variety of Options
Not one person is alike, so it is important to have many choices for a customer to choose from. With different tastes and preferences, comes with options that need to cater well to those individuals. Providing a beverage menu could be very helpful to showcase the different selections your restaurant carries. Be sure to point out alcoholic vs non-alcoholic beverages and if this applies to your business. Also consider offering a mix of hot and cold options on your menu as well. Having many options is great, but make sure your beverages are consistent in quality and taste. The quality of your options can help build customer loyalty as well as repeat business.
Consider the Season
Customizing seasonal beverages to the certain time of year is a great way to advertise your drinks. Offering these beverages that tend to be popular for those seasons allows your restaurant to promote and gain awareness towards your beverage selection. For the summer months, go towards a refreshing and fruity type of drink or cocktail, while in the colder months, going for a warm and cozy drink option could really spark attention. Be fun with the drink selections and even mention that they are only available during the specific season.
With prices going up on a lot of ingredients, be mindful of what price points make sense for drinks. Consider the cost of ingredients while also looking at your competitors prices. You want to be both competitive and profitable, so this could be an area that can be a little trickier. If a customer finds your drinks high in price, they will more likely not want to spend the extra money to purchase a specialty beverage. However, if you price your drinks too low, then you are not benefitting from that either.
Consider meeting with your staff to train them about upselling. This is a tool that is not used enough and could really make a difference in your business. If they are trained on suggesting to customers a premium beverage option or pairing the drink with a specific menu item, that can do wonders for business sales. If your restaurant has evening specials, mentioning what drink pairs well with what can create an easy choice of selecting the whole specials option.
Beverage Menu Design
Like mentioned above, have a specific menu for your beverages on the table can entice your customers to selecting a drink. This menu should be easy on the eyes and easy to follow so there is no trouble reading what the beverage description is. Consider using descriptive language and photos of your drinks to help the menu stand out. Having photos of certain beverages typically wins over a customer as they can see what their drink would look like rather than guessing.
Another way to grab attention of your customers is offering special promotions. Having a happy hour schedule that includes discounts can help attract someone in purchasing a drink as well as weekly drink specials. Everyone loves a good incentive to making a purchase, so this can help your business in gaining more customers and increase sales. Align your promotions with the seasons and this can help you get creative with your offerings.
Don’t miss out on extra sales that can be allocated from beverages. Using these 7 tips will help bring awareness to your buyers and promote sales for your business. Beverages can be overlooked, but your restaurant can gain success by taking advantage of this key spot of the food industry.
· SGC TIP: If your business needs help with menu design, we have talented team members that can make your vision come to life. Check out our Menu Design Program to see how we can help you with your beverage menu!