When it comes to enjoying the sun, us Brits know how to do it well. Come rain or shine all year round we’ll see pubs and bars full of cheery tipsy folk. There’s something about summer which makes going down to your local much more of an experience. There’s no better way to enjoy the odd heatwave, we seem to get once in a blue moon, than in a beer garden, right?
Our favourite pubs & bars showcase their summer menus, unveil glorious outdoor seating and of course make mouth-watering drinks, that quench your thirst just at the sight. Well, a cocktail does taste better when enjoying it in 30°c heat. With establishments getting fuller as the season progresses, there’s heat, stuffy crowds, impatient punters and very hot employees- not fun!
We’ve also either been a victim or been that guy, ordering a round of cocktails at peak times. Having to wait, red-cheeked for the bartender to work his mixology magic while holding up a frustrated queue. With customers flocking to these Insta worthy beer gardens, how can companies ensure the atmosphere isn’t ruined by slow service?
Customers expect quick and easy service; the busy rush of summer socialising shouldn’t affect this. Therefore, bars should be investing in technology that can make the experience easier for both customer and employees.
Such systems like introducing a mobile ordering app could be the key. It’s been revealed that 40% of 25 to 34-year-olds prefer to use their smartphone to order rather than wait in a queue. As well as customers finding the process easier, they’re more likely to increase their spend. With 67% saying they would buy more drinks when ordering on their mobile (www.morningadvertiser.co.uk).
JD Wetherspoon is a great example of how mobile ordering has improved the experience. They noticed that due to their order at the bar policy, it meant congested bar areas, impatient customers and staff rushed off their feet. The introduction of their app meant that customers can find a table, place their order, pay and have it brought to them without even having to lift a finger, well with the exception of tapping their phone. They were able to increase their transactions through dedicating bar areas to deal with online orders. This means customers aren’t having to wait for queues to reduce before their online ordered drinks are made.
Customers are more inclined to revisit an establishment when offered this stress-free ordering process. Once the app is downloaded there are also marketing opportunities that can be utilised to lure customers back in. Discounts and offers personalised to their order history or utilising push notifications to let customers know about new items added to the menu.
Companies need to be taking advantage of these tools to ensure the experience is the same throughout busy periods. The priority needs to be customer satisfaction and the introduction of more self-ordering technologies could achieve this. It means that customers can carry on enjoying time socialising instead of experiencing FOMO waiting in a bar queue.