The hotel bar is the heart of any hotel and an increasingly important part of the offer in the sector. Hotels have increasingly invested in ensuring that their bar is doing enough to keep guests in the building and spending time and money they would have spent elsewhere, with the business.

As well as a great food offer, ensuring that the drinks range is hitting the spot is top of most hoteliers’ lists. What often escapes, however, is the need to merchandise the bar area correctly to maximise the customer offer.

Applying effective merchandising makes sure you make the most of the opportunity to guide customer purchases. Our merchandising standards were developed with key drinks brands and reinforced by industry-leading insight and research from a wide range of our customers.

Working with a leading hotel group, Matthew Clark advised hoteliers and bar managers how to layout a back bar to allow easy customer navigation, highlight premium products and bring seasonal and key lines to the forefront. All decisions were based on the insights we had developed into the hotel's typical guests and the opportunities available to influence customers. This work included implementing our fridge planograms, which show how to best lay out a fridge, putting key and premium products in customer’s prime viewing space.

Our aim was always to ensure that the consumer gets the best experience, guiding them to drinks they would enjoy but also putting more money in the till. Hotels that implemented the full Matthew Clark merchandising principles saw an 11% growth in beverage spend per head. This is when compared to the hotels within the group that didn’t work with us in the study.