If your taproom is up and running, you will now need a method of controlling, collecting and disseminating the data that is vital to your success. Your POS system can be the focal point for this process and the support staff of your service provider can be a critical resource to save you time and energy. The days of running a competitive and successful enterprise in an emerging industry with nothing more than an inexpensive cash register are rapidly coming to an end. Automated processes of sharing important data between operations, marketing, customers, ownership and accounting help give your taproom the competitive edge you need.
Follow along with this scenario: Two guys and a girl walk into a taproom, sit down, order beers and pay for them. Is this a joke? No, but let’s follow one of the guys. His name is Andy, and he could become one of your regular customers.
On one side of town, Andy visits Taproom No. 1. Using a cash register or low cost tablet solution, the bartender records a transaction consisting of a $4 sale. Yay, we got paid for our hard work and expertise!
In another part of town, Andy visits Taproom No. 2. Using Digital Dining as its POS system, the following is recorded: at 5:33 p.m., Mary Jones, on the clock as the evening taproom bartender with a pay rate of $8.50/hr, rings in a $4 pint of Whiskey Barrel Stout, which normally costs $5, and sells it to Andy Brown, who is a mug club member, thus getting the mug club price. Andy has $2 left on his taproom gift card which he hands to Mary along with his Visa card. Mary applies the $2 from the gift card, gives it back to Andy and closes the transaction, putting the remaining $2 on Andy’s Visa card and prints the signature slip from Digital Dining. Andy adds in a $2 tip on the Visa transaction. Mary is pleased with the nice tip and Andy is happily savoring his brew.
Taproom No. 2 has controlled and collected payroll, sales, scheduling, marketing and payment data, which is now at its disposal to provide information for them to make intelligent business decisions.
The following week Andy returns to Taproom No. 2, sits down and orders another pint of Whiskey Barrel Stout, this time from Kelly Freeland who is a new employee. When Andy goes to pay for his beer, he hands Kelly his taproom gift card. The card is declined and Andy questions whether Kelly knows what she is doing. Kelly does a balance inquiry on the Digital Dining terminal and prints out the gift card audit trail showing a zero balance, along with the date and dollar amount for each of Andy’s past transactions. Andy clearly sees, and now remembers, that he used the last $2 on his card last week. Kelly, remembering her onsite training suggests to Andy that he reload his taproom gift card with the Winter Promo of “Pay $20 and get $25” on your taproom gift card. Andy, looking at his guest check sees a reminder for this promotion printed at the bottom and he bites, reloads his gift card and is once again a happy and loyal customer of Taproom No. 2. He is now much less likely to return to his former watering hole where he hung out before Taproom No. 2 opened.
Even though both scenarios go to extremes, they are very real. Many POS products, including today’s low cost cloud-based apps running on an iPad will fall somewhere in between and land close to Taproom No. 1.
If your taproom is in the planning or construction phase, consider investing in a POS product that gives you possession and control of your valuable sales and receipt data. Cloud-based apps running on an iPad may look sleek and affordable at the onset, but most prohibit access to any raw data. Would you rather spend your time brewing beer or manually crunching, copying and transferring numbers?
Here is a quick test — will the POS product you are considering integrate directly into QuickBooks? If you are considering Digital Dining, the answer is yes. A few dollars a month properly budgeted for the right POS system can make all the difference between the business running you and you running the business.
The implementation and support teams at Service Integrated Systems have over 25 years of experience in helping business owners transition from the Taproom No. 1 model into an efficient and more profitable Taproom No. 2 model.