Owning and managing a bar is not all fun and games, but takes a lot of time and hard work. With drink specials, pricing, food menus, and of course, money to worry about, it leaves little time to consider how you will manage the point of sale system of your bar. For bars and restaurants in particular, the point of sale and cash management is extremely important. In a fast-paced environment with a high cash flow, you will want a point of sale that is easy to use for employees and will help you connect with your customers. Here are a few things to consider when choosing a POS for your bar or restaurant.
Bars, nightclubs, and restaurants tend to be very hectic and fast-paced working environments for bartenders and servers. This means you will want a point-of-sale system that is easy to navigate for both management and employees. Being a bartender in a busy bar often means having to take multiple drink orders at one time and remembering the separate tabs for each. A point of sale system that allows your employees to easily manage tabs, split items, and enter happy hour and other other drink specials will cut down on the amount of time spent entering orders, and will increase the time spent preparing drinks and communicating with customers.
You will also want a system that allows employees to print customer tabs and receipts, or send food orders directly to a kitchen printer.
When managing a bar, you will typically have a higher amount of cash coming in compared to your standard restaurant. For this, you will want to ensure that your point of sale system has the capabilities to handle large amounts of cash. You may also want to consider a proximity-based solution for your cash drawer to ensure that your cash drawer is always safe while bartenders are restocking liquor or grabbing food orders from the kitchen.
In a bar, ambiance is extremely important! People decide to go out to a bar to relax after a long day of work, or to have fun with a group of friends. You want to make sure that your bar makes guests feel welcome and comfortable no matter their reason for being there. With that, be sure to consider the look and feel of your point of sale. When sitting at the bar, customers will see your bartender running tabs, printing receipts, and interacting with the point of sale. Invest in a POS that will display a smooth transaction between the employees and the POS system, and one that jibes with the ambiance of your bar. If you’re the type of bar to have wooden stool seats and dart boards lining the walls, then a standard cash drawer and printer with a tablet should do the job. If your bar radiates a more modern and trendy look, you may want to go for a sleek, all-in-one POS system, such as the Star mPOP™.
As a bartender, engaging with customers is important for two reasons: you get better tips, and customers end up spending more money on drinks. When customers feel comfortable talking to and engaging with their bartender, they are more likely to stay longer and purchase more drinks while they cat. But what about after the customer leaves? It’s just as important to engage with customers after their visit as it is to during their visit in order to ensure they continue coming back. There are a number of customer engagement options offered by POS providers with just one being digital receipts.
Offering a digital receipt option to your customer customers can easily allow you to track how often a customer frequents your bar and their go-to drink order. This then allows you to offer your customer coupons or inform them of promotions using those digital receipts. Star’s AllReceipts™ digital receipt solution offers engagement tools, such as Engage NOW and Flip, providing customers with coupons and discounts using the back of the digital receipts, or can direct them straight to your website. AllReceipts™ also offers device management options and data facilitation tools to make sure you get to most out of your digital receipt solution.
In your bar, a POS can be so much more than just a place to manage cash and input orders, but it can help you grow your business!
Brianna Moriarty is the Partner Development Manager at Star Micronics where she works with channel-partners to grow their business and develop new markets. Brianna has a background in marketing and uses this to help VARs and ISVs to establish a go-to-market strategy and create co-marketing campaigns. She enjoys following the latest social media marketing trends and creating content for retailers and SMBs.