The hospitality industry in America is changing, and all the businesses under its wings should. If you need to modernize your bar business and increase the satisfaction of your guests, then there are some trends you need to consider.
To start you off, here is a highlight of five key industry trends that you can incorporate into your bar.
From robots to virtual and augmented reality, technology takes the center-stage in the transformation of the American hospitality industry. Modern visitors are looking for a more tech-centered service in bars and restaurants.
Customer-centered service is a significant trend in all sectors. Guests in hotels, restaurants, and bars want to be treated as individuals, not as part of some impersonal sales statistics. Consequently, there is a growing need for businesses in the industry to figure out ways of personalizing their services.
3. Social media and online reputation
The growth of social media has made information easy to share. Consequently, online presence and reputation management are one of the fastest-growing trends in hospitality. Bars and restaurants are finding ways to respond promptly to customers on social media networks.
4. Corporate social responsibility
Environmental Sustainability, ethics, respect for the welfare of others and the community top the list of the leading CSR concerns of the American consumer. Bars, hotels, and restaurants are not left out in this scrutiny.
5. The public living room mind-set
The hospitality sector considered 2018 as the public living room year. The trend involves using restaurants and bars as places for informal gatherings and conventions. It helps patrons save the expense of a meeting room, and many modern bars are adopting this trend.
Five Ways to future-proof your bar business:
Having mentioned the key trends, here are some tips that have proven effective at improving the satisfaction of customers. They will make your bar stand out today and be ready for the future.
1. On-screen menus and mobile apps
It might not be viable to have an utterly robot-staffed bar as Henn-na Hotel in Nagasaki. However, you can still incorporate some technology into your bar. One that is becoming continually common is on-screen menus. Your guests can then place their orders without having to queue or shout at the bartender, though some still will!
With about 81% of Americans having a smartphone, mobile applications are another effective tech-centered method of streamlining making orders and booking tables at your bar.
2. Fast Internet Speeds
Free Wi-Fi connection is one of the ways the hospital industry is adapting to the demands of technology. However, slow internet is a sure put off to patrons. Therefore, if you already have free internet at your bar, ensure it is fast enough for the needs of your guest. In case you haven’t yet, then the sooner you invest in it, the better for your business.
3. Customized service
Train your staff on the art of personalized service. They include activities such as getting the requested order right, marking the preferences of loyal customers, and greeting guests personally. Another essential addition is a curator cocktail book. It will make your American cocktail mixes one of a kind.
4. Online presence
It is crucial to have a fan page on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and any of the platforms that your customers reside online. However, this is not all that is necessary. Employ someone or a team, depending on the size of your business, to monitor and manage your online reputation.
Online reputation is essential for several reasons, but most importantly, because most customers will launch complaints on social media before telling your staff. Engaging the customers and responding to their needs promptly on social media will improve relations and customer satisfaction.
5. Create a public living room space
Your bar cannot assume this trend and survive. Have a section where your customers can have informal meetings and gatherings at no additional cost. You may create terms and conditions that regulate its use but have it nonetheless.
The only way to maintain your bar business when change comes is to adopt it. As you implement the above trends in your bar, watch out for new ones since the hospitality industry is continually changing. As things change, so should the way you run your bar!
By Bruce Hakutizwi, Director of North America for BusinessesForSale.com, the world’s largest online marketplace for buying and selling small and medium size businesses.