Attracting customers

Five Tips to Make Your Pub/Restaurant Stand Out

09 February 2017
3 minute read

Alex Woods

Running any business can be risky and with pubs constantly struggling to stay ahead of competitors, it’s important to meet growing customer demands and changes in the industry. Whether you’re having a quiet month or are looking to expand, it might be time to start thinking about making a few changes. 

The thought of making those changes could fill you with dread - maybe you can’t justify the cost, can’t afford the disruption or simply don’t know where to begin.  

We’ve listed 5 ways you can make valuable improvements to your pub to help get you started: 

1. Keep your website updated 

Showcase Online

One of the first thing customers do when deciding whether to visit a pub is search online. If they can't find you, they might be put off and go elsewhere. If you’re not already online then make sure the first thing you do is get a website up and running, and set up your social channels. You can create a site really easily with website builders such as WIX and Squarespace. As a minimum, include photos, menus, opening times, and contact details. If you already have this in place but still feel like your online presence is lacking then it could be time for a rebrand. Think about your target audience - will your logo and design appeal to them? These are important things to consider when promoting your pub online.  

2. Use online reviews to your advantage

Online Reviews

Customers will often look at online reviews before visiting your pub to see how reputable you are. Google, TripAdvisor and Yelp are just a few of the sites that come up when customers are looking for reviews. It can take a while to build up positive feedback, but there are ways that you can speed up the process. Reminding customers to leave you a review after they’ve visited instore or providing a link on your website where customers can quickly and easily leave feedback are just some options. It’s also a good idea to Verify Your Business With Google so that you appear on Maps, Search, and other Google services. 

3. Redecorate and revive 

Redecorating Pub

Whether it’s a coat of fresh paint or a whole redesign, redecorating your pub could bring it a new lease of life. Three valuable changes you could make include installing new light fittings, putting in a new bar or decking your pub out with new furnishings e.g. tables, chairs, sofas. For quick wins, you could purchase some new pictures to hang on your walls, buy some new placemats or get some new cushions for your chairs and sofas. You can visit Pinterest for more ideas and inspiration on what you can do with the space you have. As well as visual changes, it’s also important to move with the times, so if you don’t have it already, install WiFi for your customers or invest in a state-of-the-art TV to show sporting events. If accessing funds is the only thing holding you back from a redesign, we recommend looking into alternative Pub Financing options so you can get your plans underway in no time.    

4. Become a host

Become A Host 

Although running events sounds like a whole lot of hassle, it doesn’t need to be. You could start with something small like a pub quiz, and if it’s a success make it a weekly event. Try to schedule it for the same day every week so customers can mark it as a regular event in their diaries. Make sure you promote this across both online and offline channels and encourage your regular customers to bring new people along. You could also offer to host community events such as book clubs or yoga classes to draw in more customers and put your pub on the map. 

5. Take it outside 

Take It Outside

Making use of an outdoor space can give you an edge over your competitors as Punters Flock To Pub Gardens In The Summer Months. It could also double or triple your venue capacity if the space is used well. Outdoor furniture can look old and tired quickly so think about replacing the furniture every few years or sprucing it up with new cushions and sunbrellas. Outdoor areas don’t just need to be a summer occasion - invest in some heaters and blankets to make it a cosy area even in the colder months. 

When making changes, however big or small, it’s always useful to get customer feedback. It’s a great way to ensure you’re meeting local demand and can prompt you to make valuable changes that will turn new visitors into loyal customers, who return time and again.

Next Steps

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