With so many new and exciting bars popping up on every corner and every crevice of the city centers, finding a way to become the best is more of a struggle. Starting out as any new business can seem daunting, and it’s been researched and proven that 80% of all start-ups fail within the first year, so how can you stand out from the crowd and be crowned the best bar around? Running a bar is all about bringing people together with good music, a great atmosphere and excellent booze. Here are some simple tips to follow to make sure you’re reigning champion…
This is rule number 1. Be sure to keep your alcohol well stocked and flowing throughout the night, there’s nothing worse than a bar that runs out of their signature drink, or the alcohol classics on a night out. If you want to keep your customers happy and in the bar, then you need to give them a reason to stay. If the alcohol has run out, then it won’t be long before you are left alone, with nothing but empty cups and sticky floors to keep you company. Keep track of your best sellers, the busiest times and days, and the most successful seasons for your bar and be sure to stock up according to this. Keep all of your equipment on hand, such as blenders, shakers, olives and lemons so that you can cater for every drink order and you will have everybody smiling.
Adopting a signature drink will ensure that you are remembered by customers and that you are well ahead of your competitions. Unusual drinks can spark conversation, so whether you want to serve beer in a pineapple, or set fire to a cocktail, the wackier the better. Try to create the “deep fried mars bar” of drinks, this way people will travel from all around to come and sample your creativity. Throw in a few cool bartender tricks, flips and twirls of the cocktail and you have rolled your entertainment and bartending into one.
Finding the perfect location for your new bar is crucial, it needs to be big enough for lots of people to cram into, and it needs to be in a well-known/ cool area to keep people walking through the door. Remember, in the first few years your wallet is your life blood, so try to find a happy medium of a good price and a good location. If you find yourself moving your bar into a dingy backstreet off the beaten track, then get creative and incorporate a speakeasy theme into your bar, this will intrigue people and entice them in.
Always account for all of the added extras and costs of renting or buying a property for your bar. There are hidden costs that can really mount up, such as electricity bills, water rates, council tax and business rates. You can offer for a reduction, for example a business rates appeal, or a reduction in your electricity bill, if you feel you are being charged too much, but for most of the part, you are on your own and have to account for everything prior to the bills stacking up.
With bars cropping up all over the place, there needs to be a little bit of an added extra to your establishment. This could coincide with an ongoing theme that you have chosen, for example, if you chose a 1920’s speakeasy theme, you could have a jazz band playing, or you could host a murder mystery night. There are so many small things that you can do with your bar to encourage customers to keep coming back… and bringing their friends. For example, having a happy hour, offering free pizza, or even hosting a quiz night. Your establishment is your oyster at the end of the day, the trick is only to make sure that you have the best oyster for miles around!