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Staying on top of industry knowledge and keeping your business ahead is always an advantage, so we’ve put together a list of some of the most important pub trends to be aware of in 2019. From the premiumisation stronghold to the importance of snacks, it’s set to be a busy period. Being aware and taking note of these predictions will give you the opportunity to make 2019 a great year!
Premiumisation remains important in 2019. The required standard is continuing to rise, and there’s no slowdown in premium options becoming more readily available. From choice of drinks, to pub environments and customer service, it addresses them all. If you’re going to commit to the premium approach, keep in mind that consistency across all areas of your business is essential. The rigid definition of a pub is loosening, and the growth of the premium pub is expanding.
Originality and bespoke premium offerings are great ways to maximise your pub’s potential and satisfy your customers’ high expectations. In terms of drink ranges, the gap between standard and premium lines is growing. The popularity of quality drinks and the customer habit of choosing a premium option and drinking experience are evident. A report carried out by CGA predicts the staying power of premiumisation, with the premium sector of the on-trade growing by another £3bn by the year 2020.
The power of social media and its importance in everyday life means it’s essential to develop your social media profiles and regularly engage with your followers. It’s a marketing channel that develops extremely quickly, so be aware of new trends and features. In 2019, the rise of video and the power of the instagrammable image will prove particularly important. Try to incorporate this type of content so that customers can interact and visualise their experience in your pub.
Social media can be a great tool to market your pub and engage with your customers, as it’s an instant way to connect. Remember, whether you’re receiving enquiries or feedback, a short response time is essential and a technique to make your staff aware of. Being proactive and alert may lead to new customers becoming regulars. Being able to self-promote on your platforms to send out news and highlight events happening in your establishment, is a great way to show personality and provide useful information.
A pub doesn’t only have to be about the wet and dry elements. The addition of rooms can give you a new way to increase your profits. They can be a strong revenue source and can add a sustainable element to your business. The demand is present and with the combination of unique features, genuine hospitality and a great food and drink offering; you have solid foundations to build on. With customers having the option to stay over, time spent in your pub will certainly increase, so make the most of the extra opportunities this will present.
Be structured with your business capability and have a number of rooms that you’ll be able to manage and maintain. Make them as unique as possible, but remember to have all the standard features and amenities that customers expect. It’s got to look and feel worth the stay. When it comes to pricing, affordable rates are what people will be looking for, so do your research, and compete with the market. Adding rooms to your pub can increase your value and make it a destination for customers to want to visit and stay.
Sherry is set to emerge as an alternative option, and with its many popular qualities, its resurgence is only increasing. Its dry finish makes it a brilliant pairing for bar snacks (another trend so keeping reading on) such as nuts and olives. The drink itself is naturally low in residue sugars and alcohol percentage (compared to spirits), so great for the growing crowd looking for lower alcohol choices. Also, you’ll find it goes well with an array of mixers from spritz to sodas and tonic. It’s an option that’s versatile and growing in popularity so definitely worth stocking behind the bar.
From crackling to chickpeas to crisps, snacking options are expanding and becoming more popular with customers. With snacking throughout the day on the rise, a great way to approach this is by offering a menu that’s available at any time throughout your serving periods. It’s got to be instant, and the most simple option is usually the best way. Have your snacks within sight around your bar, so they’re clear and visible for customers to add to their drink sale. It’s a great way to add extra trade and value to a simple drink service.
If you’re a dry led pub, classic pub dishes are often the favourites that customers want to see on pub menus. Traditional choices provide a comforting familiarity with many pub goers. Plan to have local and seasonal produce wherever you can, and bear in mind the farm to plate attitude; it’s one that consumers are seeking for their dining experience.
This coming year customer experience is going to become more important than ever before. With competition strong, excellent quality and great value are high on everyone’s agenda for their pub experience. Being able to think like your customer is key as you’ll be able to provide exactly what they’re looking for.
Customers are what your business is all about and they’re a critical part in how it functions and succeeds. Remember that many new customers will be driven by perception so having a business that is attractive, engaging and ultimately offers value is going to be the winning choice. Bear in mind, not all your customers are the same, so finding a balance in what you offer is essential in supporting and growing your base. You want to keep front of mind and provide winning experiences to keep your customers coming back for more.
The industry is continually changing, so any pub business needs to evolve, develop and bring something new to its customer. With these 2019 pub trade trends, you’ll be able to push your offering further, into new directions, and hopefully strengthen in this upcoming, politically uncertain year ahead. It’s definitely an exciting time to be in a pub!
If you’re interested in running your own pub and trying out these trends for yourself, take a look at our current vacancies and get in touch.
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