How to Taste Coffee and Recognize Espresso Flaws6 March 2020
How to organize a bar: Risks and Hidden Costs6 March 2020
Answering the question “how to run a coffee bar” would certainly require an analysis and a much more in-depth discussion than we can do in this article. I will try anyway to synthesize and give you some useful advices.
After analysing the chapter of hidden risks and costs and costs in the management of the coffee bar, we now address another key issue in bar management: how to increase the bar’s revenues?
Market and Territory Analysis
Analysing the territory should be the first thing:
- what are the potential customers around you?
- what kind of products / services could be of interest?
- what is the price range in which you can act?
And so on with similar questions. You will then be able to modulate the offer of your bar in relation to the needs of the territory without losing customers and working on the expansion of it.
Organization of the working day
The next step should be to divide the day into time slots, considering the needs just analysed.
Let’s take some practical examples.
How to organize your working day
- from 6 to 10: Breakfast
- from 10 to 12: Pre-aperitif
Too often underestimated time slot that may include small cafeteria cocktails, small pastries, small savoury treats, or chocolates, tea and infusions in winter;
- from 11.30 to 13: Aperitif
Very popular time slot. I suggest you to structure it with at least two price proposals;
- from 12.30 to 14.30: Lunch
Not to be underestimated, also for those places not equipped to the normal catering, but that still have to provide an answer to this customer need. In this sense it wouldn’t be bad, for those who have adequate staff, to propose express products freshly prepared, like sandwiches with different kinds of bread, or salads (avoid bagged salad, please!), or microwave. For the display in the shop window of products already prepared, try to “give colour”, to build a setting. A bamboo mat and a salad leaf will be sufficient to give an extra touch of warmth and attractiveness. In this phase be very careful with the waiting time! Your typical customer does not expect waiting times below those of a restaurant.
That’s how we enter the second phase of the day.
- from 2 to 6 p.m.: Post-lunch and Pre-evening
At this stage, depending on the analysis of the territory, you can propose again small pastries, cafeteria, ice-cream , offers, entertainment, thinking about proposals for children, take away. Is there a park near your bar? Why not propose a take-away bag for the children that have a snacks? Are you on your way to the pool or the sports field? The bag becomes more sophisticated with organic fruit or snacks and healthy drinks.
- from 18 to 20: Evening aperitif
In many cases it is the most profitable time slot and therefore it has to be managed very well in order to maximize profits. You can take this opportunity to give your bar a strong identity that, in my idea, it always goes through the diversification of proposals. You should provide at least 3 separate prices and proposals, including the famous aperitif-dinner. It can transform the bar in a sort of mini buffet restaurant, with basic drinks at standard price, perhaps differentiating it by type of drink, or work with simple counter products and structure different proposals for the table. In any case never forget chips and olives that, with their sapidity, push you to drink more. Let’s make a synthesis
- During breakfast pay attention to prices and try to propose new products that lift the receipt
- For the two aperitif time slots, focus on the diversification of proposals and prices
- At lunchtime you make the product proposal more appealing even if you don’t have a kitchen for catering, therefore keep reduced the preparation time and the waiting time for the customer.
- Don’t underestimate the intermediate time slots that are apparently not very popular but still help pay rent, salaries and utilities. Therefore try to always come up with catchy proposals!
Ask yourself the question “why should a customer come to me instead of going to the competitor?”
Find the answer to that question and you’ll certainly get off to a good start.