The Chaser: Restaurant News

// By Jordan Brydges // , Oct 18, 2019

Topics: Restaurant Management

Create a craft beer club, improved P.O.S. systems, and Gen Z shapes the future of the restaurant industry. 


Craft Beer Club to Increase Sales 


Source: McCain


We've all seen the increase in popularity with craft beers, and with no surprise, it was the most-added item on beverage menus in Q2 of 2018.  So, how do you get customers to explore the rest of your menu other than the beer menu?  Give them something enticing to pair it with.


People love clubs so why not create a craft beer club to encourage this popular menu item and offer deals on your favorite apps that would pair well.  If the beer is good and paired with deals this will generate repeat business and who doesn't love that?


If you want to bring this to your bar just remember to make it easy to join, people don't have a lot of time, hence why you are reading the recap of the news.  The easier it is for people to join the more likely they will.  Give them some rewards for joining, people love to feel special so throw them some extra perks.  Create pairings on your menus.  Most likely if you suggest a certain beer with an appetizer the customer will order it, they trust you as the food and beverage expert.  


Lastly, share it everywhere.  Tell guests when they come in, post it on social, have signs around your bar to intrigue people.  


Is Your POS System a P.O.S.?


Source: FSR Magazine 


Does your POS system look like it is straight out of the 90s?  It might be time for a new one.  Luckily in the last 10 years leaps and bounds have been taken to increase the functionality and decrease costs.  No longer do you need bulky equipment and cords running all over the place.  Smart devices with cloud-based technology has led to more options for restaurant operators to choose from and forced these companies to make reliable products, oh and also reduce prices.


The biggest pain points for restaurant operators when it comes to the POS system include:

  • Integrating outdated systems with new cloud-based systems 
  • Spending thousands of dollars on equipment and maintenance that can run the budget dry 
  • Inability to expand with outdated POS systems and considering future plans 
  • Affecting the customer experience with outdated systems that cannot keep up with loyalty programs or integrating online ordering 
  • Training your staff on outdated POS systems can take longer since they are not as intuitive and easy-to-use 


If any of these points are hitting home, it's time to go from pain to gain and streamline a POS system that fits your restaurants needs, not the other way around. 


Unlike Mother Unlike Daughter?


Source: San Francisco Chronicle 


Millennials make up just 17% of the fine wine market and that has taken a hit on the tasting rooms in Napa Valley.  Wine is a timeless drink and Millennials want something more exciting than a glass of wine.  Wineries are now competing with the popularity of craft beers, beautiful craft cocktails, legalized pot, and spiked seltzers.  


One thing we know Millennials love is an experience and they really take the phrase "wine and dine" to a whole new level.  No longer is the swish and spit tasting up at the bar good enough for Millennials.  Now they want to spend time with their friends, take time to be together and, oh yeah, taste wine and eat. 


This generation has an indulgence gap since coming from the post-bust and can't always justify spending $50 on a nice bottle of wine like their parents, but an $8-$12 bottle is more in their price range.  This also is from the way of life they live, buying cars and homes later, getting married later and spending more on experiences than materials.  For wineries to make their tastings more of an exciting experience for this generation, will be vital to stay alive.  


Also for restaurants, giving customers an experience whether its a quick lesson on the beer they are drinking or the process of making a liquor they are interested in makes them feel like they are getting a personalized experience.


Move Over Millennials, Here Comes Gen Z


Source: Nation's Restaurant News


Restaurants get ready, here comes Gen Z and they are the only major demographic group to increase the use of restaurants in the next five years.  Millennials and Gen X have passed the torch to Gen Z as they start to eat at home and order delivery more, so how can you keep these customers around?  Convenience!


Millennials and Gen X want foods that don't require any preparing since their are already so busy and these trends are increasing in popularity.  For restaurants to stress this benefit they can keep these demographic groups around. 


Creating a grab-and-go like concept and provide prepared foods that are made from scratch in the kitchen appeal to working individuals and families or people that want to meal prep for the week and grab something quick.  Another option is to deliver foods to people at home, another growing popularity.  This gives customers more variety and appeals to different age groups.  


While Millennials and Gen X are decreasing their dining out experiences, Gen Z will enter their peak restaurant presence in 2024 and an increase of 3.6% within the next five years.  So restaurant operators don't fear, you win some you lose some and the next generation is heading on in.  


Is Your Service Costing You Money?


Source: Running Restaurants 


What do you remember more often, a really good server or a really bad server?  Most likely you are going to remember the really bad server.  And unfortunately if that experience happens at your restaurant, you can probably kiss that customer goodbye.  


A server that is properly trained can increase your restaurants profits by double or triple and can also result in returning customers.  Focusing on staff training is vital to your restaurant, not only should you hire friendly and out-going people but training them to use the qualities you hired them for will result in success.  


If you are a restaurant operator just take notice when you go out to eat and have a really good or bad experience, how can you use that experience to train your staff at your establishment?  Is it something as simple as making sure your staff acknowledges guests even if they are slammed or having a product in mind they know really well and make it their goal their shift to sell it?


Don't let your restaurant be the result of a negative Yelp review because of your service.  Just remember, if people didn't want to be served they could easily eat at home, they didn't have to pick your restaurant to eat at so make it worth their while and money.  

Jordan Brydges

About the author, Jordan Brydges

Jordan is a marketing intern at Backbar and a business student studying marketing. She has been working in the restaurant industry for 8 years and developed a passion for cooking and a love of red wine.

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