Beyond Upselling- Techniques and Technology to Increase Your Sales

Traditional upselling of beverage size, quantity, and quality require staff to influence patrons to increase their purchase. While traditional upselling shouldn’t be discounted, its effectiveness depends on your bartenders’ knowledge and delivery. In addition to training your staff in the art of upselling, techniques and technology can help your venue sell more with less effort. These methods can be implemented individually to quantify the effectiveness of each strategy or in tandem to maximize your venue’s sales and your customers’ experience. 

There are several things your bartenders and your venue can do to improve the guest experience that naturally results in increased sales. While each venue within the hospitality industry is different, there are several tactics that can help your venue increase sales while offering frictionless service. 

Offer Multiple Pour Sizes

Beyond giving your customers choice, multiple pour sizes allow your venue to upsell using psychology. By offering three beverage sizes, small, medium, and large (or whatever you choose to name your sizes), your venue can implement “the decoy effect”. The decoy effect is a phenomenon in which consumers are presented with three choices, one of which is intended by the vendor to be a decoy. The decoy option influences the consumer to go with the more expensive option, choosing the best deal over spending the least amount of money. 

Consider a venue that offers beer on draft in small (4 ounces), medium (12 ounces), and large (16 ounces) pours at the following price points:

Small (4 ounce): $4

Medium (12 ounce): $10

Large (16 ounce): $12

As the sizes increase, the price per ounce decreases, encouraging customers to purchase more to save more. The most dramatic savings is between the middle and largest pour sizes. The medium is what is called the decoy size and price point, meant to increase interest in the largest, most expensive option. 

In the scenario outlined above, the consumer is offered the opportunity to save on the cost per ounce, should they order a medium or large pour size. The venue is naturally upselling by offering the consumer the chance to save money per ounce while simultaneously benefitting their own bottom line. 

More is better- when it comes to pour sizes offered and points of service throughout your venue.

Multiple Points of Service

Have you ever been at a concert, bar, or baseball game and wanted another drink but changed your mind after seeing a huge line at the bar? By offering multiple points of service, you can eliminate lines and wait times, encouraging your customers to order that second round.

Traditional Bars

Establishing multiple bars throughout your venue is exactly how it sounds. Traditional bars require tap lines and staff at each service station who take orders and serve your guests. Stationing staff throughout your venue also allows you to implement traditional upselling at each service station. 

Tap Walls

Whether you want to install two taps or twenty, tap walls are a space saving, self serve solution. Disperse guests by installing tap walls on opposite ends of your venue. Duplicate your menu at each station or offer beer at one tap wall, wine at another, and cocktails at a third. 

Mobile Bars

Like tap walls, mobile bars are a self-serve solution. Unlike tap walls, mobile bars can be moved. Station mobile bars outdoors on good weather days, move mobile bars to change the flow of traffic, or bring out additional mobile bars for holidays and peak hours. 

Whether traditional bars, tap walls, or mobile bars make the most sense for your venue, Sestra can help. We can upgrade any dispenser to work with our TapWise technology and integrate your otherwise siloed data to offer real-time, actionable analytics.

Loyalty Programs

Loyalty programs reward your regulars and encourage capricious customers to become regulars. Everyone wants the Cheers tagline and loyalty programs help customers feel like your venue is their venue.

Punch Cards

Go old school with punch cards and offer a free beverage after every tenth beverage that is purchased. While this option is simple to implement, your customers have to carry their card around with them and make sure not to lose it before earning their free beverage. 

Mobile Apps

Mobile apps can serve as digital punch cards that track your customers’ orders and reward their loyalty. Most people have their phones on them already so they’re not tasked with keeping track of an additional asset. An app can also remind customers of their favorite orders and offer self-serve functionality. Whether your venue implements paper punch cards or digital punch cards, ensure your POS system tracks and accounts for all beverages dispensed, including freebies.

Mug Club

Mug clubs are a fun option that offer members a branded piece of your venue that they can fill at a discounted rate. You can require mugs to be left at your venue (taking up space at your bar) or have patrons bring their personalized mug each time they visit.

Happy Hour

Happy hour is a simple and effective way to thank your community for patroning your venue. Whether you offer discounted food and beverages or specialty cocktails that are limited to happy hour, incentivize your guests to visit between certain hours. Your Smart Dispensing system can automatically adjust your menu, pricing, and serving sizes for happy hour and allow you to track the success of your offers.

Upselling techniques and technology at your venue take the responsibility off your bartenders and give choice as well as rewards to your customers. Whether you’re ready to implement one of these techniques or all of them, Sestra can help your venue track the success of your upselling efforts, offer your guests frictionless customer service, and receive real-time, actionable data. Ready to learn more? Contact us today.