Despite our differences, be it wine bar vs dive bar, fine dining vs upscale casual, or fast food vs health food, we all have pretty similar goals in this industry.
These companies are helping bars and restaurants organize, advertise, and operate nor efficiently, and they may not all be for you, but I’m sure you’ll find at least one that could help your business.
If you do counter service, or really anything besides table service, Opentable probably isn’t for you, but if you deal with server sections, dietary requests, reservations or a hostess, you’ll want to get set up with them.
They are one of my favorite services to work with. They aren’t perfect, but they are providing business owners with a great piece of software, and they are giving you a spot in a popular platform that sends you high-value customers.
What sets them apart: Most online ads will charge you per click, or per view. Opentable promoted listings are only charged when a reservation is made. That makes for an easy-to-track ROI.
My Rating : 9/10
Right now only in Southern Louisiana, Drinker’s Edition is making big moves to get happy hour info to the masses. The Drinker’s Edition app is a deal search engine that provides its customers with info on over 400 happy hours in New Orleans alone.
As they set their sights on the rest of the US, keep an eye out for when the app gets coverage of your city. They run exclusive promos, as well as provide “boosts” to happy hour listings, putting them higher in the feed, sending out push notifications, and providing more info and pictures about the partnering bar.
They are a small startup right now, but they have a reach that allows them to send huge amounts of people to the bars and restaurants they are partnered with. If you live in New Orleans, or Baton Rouge, you can start working with them right now!
My Rating: 10/10
Full Disclosure: I am both Owner and Operator of Enclave Media, as well as a Founding partner in Drinker’s Edition
If you have a large beer selection and have trouble with product moving unevenly, don’t fret, Untappd can help you sell more beer, and specifically more of the beer that you want to move.
It is a beer database and social media app for its users, who check in the beers they drink and comment or “cheers” each other’s check-ins. Much like Opentable, they make listings for bars and restaurants automatically, so your business may already have some check-ins under its belt.
What they sell is a monthly subscription that allows you to “verify your business” and upload photos, make a custom beer menu, with stats from their database autofilled into every entry for beer type, ABV, brewery, etc. Their users are huge craft beer fans, and will come out for those obscure and challenging brews.
You can also use Untappd to hold flash sales which notify users that have followed your bar on the app. All in all, if used properly, Untappd can boost your beer sales and give you more control over what beers are selling.
My Rating: 7/10
Rewards Network gives its subscribers an incentive to go to your business, without you having to offer a discount or promotion.
When you sign up, you start paying a monthly fee, and you get added to their list of participating businesses. Rewards Network negotiates with credit card companies to give customers cash back when they use their activated card at a participating business.
It provides data about who it has sent to you, as well as private feedback from the customers. it’s great because you sign up and it runs in the background, there is no software platform to contend with, your business is just added to the list.
My Rating: 9/10