In the fast-paced and competitive, modern restaurant market, it is crucial to follow business practices that boost profits across the board, from product ordering to creating a cohesive and inviting guest experience. Your top priority is providing outstanding service, but are you doing what you can to maximize profits within your beverage alcohol category? Here are the top 5 ways that leading restaurant management companies are using automation and digital insight to build a more profitable beverage alcohol program.
1. Streamline Your Alcohol Ordering Process
In the hierarchy of time-wasting and cumbersome business practices for the beverage alcohol industry, ordering often stands on top. Alcohol orders are placed through text messages, emails, phone calls or even faxes sent to each individual distributor, slowing down the ordering process and introducing unnecessary confusion. Occasionally, distributors will utilize online portals in an attempt to simplify this process, but this still requires you to know who you order each product from and remember individual login credentials. The restaurant world evolves quickly and it’s not uncommon for you to have new managers and bartenders that aren’t sure which distributors carry each product you need behind the bar. Today there are advancements in the industry offering ways for retailers to consolidate and simplify this process. Fintech, for example, enables you to order all your alcohol, from all your distributors, in a single, online order. Fintech takes this a step further by only displaying products that you’ve ordered in the past year, allowing for easy and quick repeat orders while also providing a simple way to add new products to your portfolio.
2. Go Paperless
It’s the 21st century! Over 80% of consumers are paying bills electronically, and more and more restaurants are moving to a cashless environment – why should your vendor payments be any less digital? Why waste time prepping a check, managing escrow accounts, or counting large quantities of cash when there are a thousand other day-to-day responsibilities to focus on? Automating your alcohol invoice payments shaves off an average of 15 minutes from each delivery, reducing the interruptions due to extended delivery times and affording more time to spend building valuable customer relationships. Electronic vendor payments automate one of the most challenging aspects of running an alcohol business and ensure that your alcohol invoices are paid on time, keeping all your locations 100% compliant with state regulatory laws.
3. Track and Reconcile Alcohol Purchases
Monitoring prices and reconciling payments are integral but tedious parts of your business. There are long manual processes involved with managing and organizing paper invoice records, and – wait, we’re going paperless! Automating your vendor payments also makes it possible to electronically track all your purchases. Often, the same companies that facilitate electronic invoice payments also offer an easy-to-use web portal that houses past purchase information. For example, Fintech, the leader in electronic alcohol invoice payments, provides online access to 13 months of rolling invoice history, where authorized users can view alcohol invoices broken down by individual line item. You’ll streamline the tracking and reconciliation process, know exactly what invoices are tied to a particular credit, and even proactively request credits directly from your alcohol distributors. This eliminates the transfer of paper invoices between departments and provides corporate offices with an inside view of exactly what is being purchased at each location, allowing them to better monitor brand compliance standards. Fintech goes beyond simple visibility and takes the invoice information pulled from your distributor and integrates it directly with your back office or accounting system, ensuring you’re always viewing the most accurate and up-to-date information.
4. Make the Right Ordering Decisions for Your Business
Are you making the right decisions when ordering your alcohol? The most lucrative beverage alcohol programs understand that the key to maximizing profits lies in effective tracking and analysis of purchases. This means that even the most organized beverage directors fall into the traps of unnecessary ordering fees, lost discounts, and unexpected price fluctuations. Imagine if the details of these hard-to-track but simple-to-change ordering opportunities were delivered directly to your email inbox each month, like your favorite restaurant news subscription. Partners like Fintech provide monthly, personalized analytic reports that show you training and ordering opportunities, helping you to maximize profits and make more money behind the bar. Is it necessary that your properties adhere to a specific beverage program or do you need additional analytic insight? Fintech builds custom reports that can notify you when locations aren’t ordering approved items and can build custom reports to meet any business need. Use this insight based on your past purchases to direct future beverage alcohol category success!
5. Build Your Brand, Protect Your Investment
No matter if you’re a small dive bar or have fine-dining restaurants spanning the nation, alcohol sales can make up a significant portion of your overall profits but can also be one of the largest time wasters. From the interruption of front-of-house operations caused by deliveries to entering invoice information into your back office system or spending hours comparing invoices and spreadsheets to analyze beverage costs, juggling the logistical demands of alcohol sales can take away from your ability to provide an outstanding overall guest experience. Full payment automation and clear, easy-to-understand alcohol reports will give your teams powerful, actionable data that allows you to make more effective business decisions. Overall, these systems will give you back valuable time to build a prosperous brand and a loyal, thriving customer base.