Training and preparation before a match is paramount to an athlete’s success and preparing your outlet for this summer’s sporting events should take top priority...

It’s our belief that getting planning and preparation out of the way early will help when it comes to increasing your sales. Of course, ensuring you're all set well in advance will mean you can be confident that service will run smoothly and customers will walk away satisfied. Every outlet is different and will approach this summer differently, but there are few things all venues should be on top of. Here is our advice on the ten pieces of preparation you can benefit from;

1 - It’s never been easier to create awareness that you’ll be showing major sporting events. In outlet use chalkboards, posters and displays to promote upcoming fixtures. Consumers head to the centre of the bar, this is the best place to put your key point of sale items. It goes without saying customers will browse your back bar while waiting at the bar so consider advertising here too. Exterior chalkboards and banners can be used to promote fixtures to passing trade.

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2 - Get some good POS to show your outlet is ready. Our Design Studio team have produced a range of templates that can be used for all of your POS needs this summer. High-quality POS can help increase footfall and drive sales of any promotion. They also offer a bespoke design and print service to make the most of your interior space and grab your customer’s attention.

Order a Summer of Sport POS pack  

3 - Take advantage of your Facebook, Instagram or other social media accounts. Social media is an excellent way to connect with people local to your business, highlight your events and drink promotions. If you haven’t already, make sure you have a Facebook for business account and take advantage of its easy advertising tools. For example, selecting ‘promote your business locally’ will allow you to advertise directly to sports fans within a mile of your outlet.

Find out more about Social Media training  

4 - It’s going to be a busy summer so make sure you increase your orders so you don’t run out of your key lines – brands such as Budweiser, Carlsberg and Heineken are sure to be big sellers. If you’re eligible for Matthew Clark Promotions then make sure you view your promotions brochures online by clicking here. We work closely with our suppliers to negotiate the very best offers so make sure you benefit from the savings all summer long.

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5 - Whether it is bar blades, branded glassware or a pack of soft cask pegs, ensure that you have all the equipment you need to make the summer trade flow without a hitch. We work with Innkeeper Suppliers to offer exclusive prices and next day delivery through MC Innstock. On the big matches when you are at your busiest there is a chance you can run out of glassware, or have only freshly cleaned warm glasses available. Having plastic cups not only helps with this problem but also allows glass collectors to carry a huge amount more per trip around the bar.

Order equipment at MC Innstock  

6 - Labour costs are typically the largest expenditure for any hospitality business but the last thing you want is too few staff on shift to efficiently serve the volume of customers in your business, potentially missing out on sales. Take all the sporting fixtures into account with your rotas and use a tool such as S4 Labour to save on unnecessary labour spend.

Find out more about S4 Labour Management  

7 - Make sure you brief your staff so they know exactly where they should be and what they should be doing for a slick performance. Brief all staff on potential upsell opportunities – you could always offer some incentives to get them geared up and motivated to sell, it’s surprising how much offering a staff reward can boost your sales.

Download our Upsell Cheat Sheet for staff  

8 - Divide your bar area to accommodate a fast lane where a member of staff only serves bottles products to speed up service. Or if you have space, why not have a mobile bottle bar near your screen or even in the garden (licence permitting)? This can ease pressure on the bar at busy periods and could easily be created with a small table and ice-filled tub.

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9 - Ensure all screens are in full working order and positioned for optimal viewing making sure you have comfort for the smaller events and lots of space for the big crowds at the larger events. And check projectors prior to big events to ensure no last-minute disappointment.

10 - According to data from Carlsberg, 63% of consumers say being able to reserve a table would encourage them to watch football in the On-Trade. While it seems fairer to not take bookings, or particularly hard to manage, it does offer you the opportunity to make some early sales and relieve pressure on the day. We will cover the why and how of bookings in more depth on the next page.