Not just knowing but understanding when your optimal hours are will improve your bar and allow you to staff more efficiently, cut down on labor costs and capitalize on the most crowded times of the day.
There are a few steps in identifying when these ebbs and flows are. Learn what they are and how you can take advantage of your busiest times to increase profit.
1. Identify Customers
Even if you’ve been operating your establishment for some time, it’s good to take a step back and see some of the basics—one of those being your guests. Who’s coming to your bar—college kids? 30-somethings? Sports fans? Blue collar workers? Nailing down these details will let you make better, more informed decisions about your optimal hours.
Check general demographics of your area, observe who comes in and take a look at alcohol trends and what’s being consumed the most. Maybe through this process you realize you’re not a college bar at all and are more of a sports bar. Or, maybe you find out you’re more of a specialty bar than a lounge. Whatever the case, you’ll get a much better understanding of what you need to do to cater to the right group.
2. Check out the Competition
Take a look at the bars in your area—maybe even some of your competitors and see what hours they’re open. If you’re closing early and they’re raking in the dough after, it might be time to make an adjustment. It’ll take a bit of planning and some fine tuning, but checking on what others are doing and how they’ve become successful can help focus your efforts a little more. Conversely, if everyone is doing the exact same thing, maybe it’s time for you to switch it up and test new hours out. You may find that the new hours are your optimal hours.
3. Consider Days of the Week, Too
What days are you open and what days are you closed? Could you be closed on a different day that isn’t performing well during the week? Do you need to add a day to accommodate for the large numbers of people? When you take a deeper look at how each day of the week is performing in regards to sales goals, you can hone in more on what your optimal hours are and capitalize on them.
4. Pay Attention to Dayparts
If you’re not sure what that is, a daypart is a specific segment of the day and what happens during those hours. The three most common dayparts are breakfast, lunch and dinner. For most bars, you might only hit one daypart, for others, you might hit two. Regardless, pay attention to each to gain a deeper understanding of when you have the most guests. If it’s both, note that, too.
5. Take Advantage
Once you’ve got a better understanding of what times are the most popular and with who at your establishment, take advantage of it! Drive more customers in during those hours and give specials. And in your off hours? Do the same! Drive guests in to close the gap on your optimal hours versus not-so-popular hours.
Want to keep guests around longer? Make sure your playlists are specifically for the type of customers you have and the day part they’re coming in. Doing so can ensure guests stay longer and enjoy their time at your bar. Playlists can be a powerful driver for your business and are directly related to the experience guests have. Rather than just generic playlists, use custom, hand-selected and curated playlists made for the specific guests and daypart.
Want to harness the power of the playlist? Learn more about how Control Play can enhance your bar’s experience.
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