Bars & Pubs: how connectivity can attract more customers

Posted by Karen on Nov 4, 2015 12:00:00 AM
In 2014, Casio found that 67% of Generation Y respondents were more likely to choose a pub that offered wi-fi connectivity. Millennials (and the current teenagers of Generation Z) are digital natives. They are used to living in a world that allows them to spend as much time online as they want to – whether at work, school, home or in cafes, bars and shopping centres. The pubs and bars of today simply cannot afford not to offer internet connectivity to customers.

Going online is part of the experience

Bars and pubs aren’t just places where people go to drink and socialise, they offer an experience. People will want to Instagram photos of their cocktails, take group selfies with their mates and upload Vines of their slightly worse for the wear best mate “dancing”. The demand that customers place on a venues internet capabilities can be high, especially if they can’t get a mobile signal and wi-fi represents their only chance to stay online.

Marketing to customers through wifi

In early 2015 Molson Coors trialled that enabled pubs and bars to use the establishment’s wi-fi connection to target those who connected to the service with tailored offers and advertising.

By targeting offers to people who login to the free bar wi-fi, the bar can offer a more personalised experience – using digital tools to replicate the experience a patron gets from their local that knows their regular drink and their favourite seat. It helps the bar get a quick idea of what the person may like, and provides the customer with more relevant content. Some bars are also using digital billboards to advertise free space at the bar to passers-by, using wi-fi to communicate between the bar and the advert.

Mobile points of sale

Bars and pubs can introduce a more efficient and stress-free experience by introducing mobile points of sale (POS). Rather than have customers crowd around the few tills at the bar, or have waiting staff writing down orders and running back to the till to enter them again, bars can simply supply staff with tablets, allowing them to take the order and transmit it to the bar in a few minutes.

This eliminates some of the time customers spend waiting around for their drinks, and means that more orders can be processed during service.

Secure connection

Bars and pubs, especially chains, also need secure corporate networks – allowing establishments to connect with each other safely and securely (for example, Fluidata supplies a private wide area network for Revolution bars). Of course, without accurate stock figures or functioning POS, a bar or pub isn’t going to have a very successful evening and glitches in the system are likely to drive customers elsewhere.

Connectivity in pubs and bars goes far beyond offering free wi-fi to customers. It’s about running an efficient bar; about ensuring that customers don’t have a long wait for their drinks, and ultimately about creating a memorable experience that makes people want to come back for more.
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