Loading...

Follow Bar Patrol on Feedspot

Continue with Google
Continue with Facebook
or

Valid
Bar Patrol by Dave Allred, Bar Patrol - 4M ago
Here we take an in-depth look at the top 5 bar and liquor inventory apps for managing your bar inventory, including: features, functionality, reporting and pricing.
Ok, full disclosure: you are reading this on a bar inventory management website, where we are a bit biased when it comes to the bar and liquor inventory app that provides the most bang for the buck, but we are also an open door when it comes to shining a light on our system, as well as other systems.
We have no problem admitting that any one of these systems would be fantastic in helping you count, track and manage your inventory at the highest level.
With that said, we are putting out this review and article with great eagerness because we enthusiastically believe that when it comes to making an investment for your business, nothing saves you more time or increases your profits faster than a cutting-edge inventory system.
All of these systems sync through the cloud, so no need to brag about that in the features listed below.
With that said, let’s get to it, and remember: in the end, you should make the best choice for you and your business.
1. BAR PATROL INVENTORY APP
Yep, top dog, baby! What kind of company would we be if we timidly listed our inventory app and system at #4 just to be humble? But Bar Patrol App isn’t just #1 because we’re feigning confidence.
Developed by bar industry expert Dave Allred, Bar Patrol App was built for the bar owner/manager who wants a top-of-the-line app without adding a large monthly expense. Having taken thousands of inventories using various systems, Allred developed the system to be remarkably fast, accurate, and easy-to-use while having all the most powerful features and analytics involved.
Although many competitors try to beat Bar Patrol App at its own game, the truth is, Bar Patrol has the same or more features than the other top 4 listed here, at 1/4 the cost.
DETAILS
Count On Multiple Devices: Yes
Integrates With POS Systems: Yes
Measuring Method:Bluetooth Scale (2% margin of error)
Counts Food: Yes
Reporting: Stock-on-Hand, Usage, Variance, Invoicing, Item Costing, Purchase Orders, Historical Data
Recipes/Item Costing: Yes
Available Devices: iOS Only
Ordering & Invoicing: Invoicing and Automatic Ordering Sends Weekly Orders Directly to Your Vendors With One Click of a Button
Avg. Pricing:
$54.99 Per Month ($59/Month, or $49/Month Paid Annually)
Support: Online Chat, Email Support, Phone by Appointment
2. BEVSPOT
Bevspot inventory is a worthy competitor when it comes to bar inventory management and we actually love what they’re doing over there. They have a variety of articles and resources on their website to help owners and managers succeed. When it comes to a bar and food inventory system, Bar Patrol and Bevspot offer very similar features and benefits, but Bevspot raised millions of dollars to pay sales people to sell Bevspot to bar owners, so they have to charge a lot more to pay for those salaries, which means you’re paying 4 times as much to get the same system.
DETAILS
Count On Multiple Devices: Yes
Integrates With POS System: Yes
Measuring Method: Slider (6 - 8% % margin of error)
Counts Food: Yes
Reporting: Stock-on-Hand, Usage, Variance, Invoicing, Item Costing, Historical Performance, Item Sales Performance
Item Costing: Yes
Available Devices: iOS & Android
Ordering & Invoicing: Invoicing and Automatic Ordering Sends Weekly Orders Directly to Your Vendors With One Click of a Button
*Avg. Pricing: $224 Per Month ($249 Per Month or $199 Per Month Paid Annually)
Support: Online Chat, Email Support, Phone
*Bevspot has multiple pricing tiers, but in order to get all the features and reporting that you really need, you have to pay the most premium price ($249/month).
3. BEVINCO MOBILE BY SCULPTURE HOSPITALITY
Bevinco is one of the originators of bar inventory management, going all the way back to the 80’s. They are also a franchise that has Bevinco reps who come in and take full inventory audits for a ridiculous amount of money, but it's still worth it, as it will save you money. Again, Bevinco Mobile has very similar features and benefits of Bar Patrol and Bevspot. The only knock we have on Bevinco is that they use a scanner which we don’t like as it actually takes longer to turn each bottle around while you try to line the red laser up with the bar code. Bar Patrol & Bevspot are faster and more streamlined because of this.
Count On Multiple Devices: Yes
Integrates With POS System: Yes
Measuring Method: Bluetooth Scale (2% Margin of Error) + Scanner
Counts Food: As a Separate Software For an Additional Fee
Reporting: Stock-on-Hand, Usage, Variance, Invoicing, Item Costing, Purchase Orders, Historical Data
Item Costing: Yes
Available Devices: iOS & Android
Ordering & Invoicing: Invoicing and Automatic Ordering Sends Weekly Orders Directly to Your Vendors With One Click of a Button
*Avg. Pricing: $175/Month
Support: Online Email Form, Phone
*Like Bevspot, Bevinco Mobile has multiple pricing tiers, but you don’t really get anything valuable until you pay for the top tier, which in this case is around $175/month.
4. BEVAGER
Bevager is a bit different than the previous 3, as it integrates directly to some accounting software, which is pretty cool if that’s important to you. What we don’t like about Bevager is that they claim your bar inventory will take 20 minutes across your entire restaurant and bar which is ridiculous. Not all bars/restaurants are the same, and some have huge inventories. We offer the same challenge we did with Partender to Bevager: If you can come in our chosen bar and do a full inventory in 20 minutes, we will pay you $50,000.
Bevager also uses a scanner which again, we do not like, but besides that, Bevager overall has a pretty slick system.
Count On Multiple Devices: Yes
Integrates With POS System: Yes
Measuring Method: Point Counting/Slider ( 6 - 8% margin of error) + Scanner
Counts Food: Yes
Reporting: Stock-on-Hand, Usage, Variance, Invoicing, Item Costing, Purchase Orders, Accounting
Item Costing: Yes
Available Devices: iOS & Android
Ordering & Invoicing: Invoicing and Automatic Ordering Sends Weekly Orders Directly to Your Vendors With One Click of a Button
*Avg. Pricing: $200/Month
Support: Email and Phone
*Pricing tiers again, but you only get all the necessary features at the most premium price ($200/month)
5. PARTENDER
Partender is the sexy friend who people want to be around, until you hang around them for awhile and realize that there isn’t much substance there. And not to jump on them, but their message is also full of BS. Inventory in 15 minutes? No way. 99.2% accurate. Nope. Not with that little slider. These are made-up stats that hold no water. The scale is the most accurate measurement device and even it is only 98% accurate.
In addition, Partender claims that you can run your variance, but you have to MANUALLY enter your sales data to do this which could take up to 30 minutes or more, unlike the other four systems which upload your sales data instantly.
We will say that Partender does have a better slider system than the others because it's a snap shot of the actual bottle so you can use the brand label to get a more accurate reading.
With that said, Partender will get the job done, and it’s easy to use. But again, are you willing to spend $249/month for an inferior system?
Count On Multiple Devices: Yes
Integrates With POS System: No
Measuring Method: Point Counting/Slider ( 4 - 6% margin of error)
Counts Food: No
Reporting: Stock-on-Hand, Usage, Invoicing, Purchase Orders, Identifies Top-Sellers, Manual Variance
Item Costing: No
Available Devices: iOS Only
Ordering & Invoicing: You are able to run an invoice report that shows you what to order, but no automatic ordering
*Avg. Pricing: $249/Month
Support: Email and Phone
*Pricing tiers once again, the lower ones giving you very little.
CONCLUSION
All in all, you would most likely be happy with any one of these systems. Most of them provide the same features and benefits (sans Partender). The main difference here is that Bar Patrol has an average cost of $54.99 per month, while the average cost of the other four combined is $212 per month, 3 - 4 times the cost of Bar Patrol.
In the end, you need to choose what’s best for you and your business.
We wish you all the success in the world. We really do.
Cheers, until next time,
The Bar Patrol Team
Read Full Article
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 
Does that title offend you? Sorry, but it’s time, don’t you think? To FINALLY step into the 21st century and stop taking inventory like a caveman scribbling inventory counts with a pen and paper? I mean, that's what the New Year is for, isn't it? Setting goals and seizing new opportunities that propel your life and business to new heights.
Or perhaps you don’t take bar inventory at all but you’ve realized that it’s time to stop being a bar owner and to start being a business owner, a real entrepreneur who takes his/her business by the balls because your understand how much time and money you can save with a current inventory system.
After all, how can you possibly compete with other bars and restaurants in your area who have already implemented a quality system and are taking their business to another level?
The good news is that these days more and more bar/restaurant owners and mangers are realizing how important it is to track their inventory, and better yet, they’re doing something about it because once they start using a cutting-edge bar inventory app they can’t believe how long they waited to stop using inventory spreadsheets to manually count and track everything. Sort of like moving from cassette tapes to iTunes.
BUT COUNTING INVENTORY SUCKS!
I know, I know...be calm, little one. Let’s look at an inventory program you can put into place that will keep you from dropping a toaster into your bathtub.
Here at Bar Patrol, we have helped hundreds of clients put in an inventory management program in place that helps systemize their process so that they can track how accurately their bartenders are pouring without taking daily inventory counts.
When bar owners and managers ask us, “How often should I count inventory?” this is what we tell them:
1. Full Inventory - Do a full inventory count once per week and on the first of the month so you can run your pour cost numbers and profit/loss statement (at the very least, take it once per month). With Bar Patrol App, your inventory will take half the time of traditional inventory systems so you should be able to fly through your inventory fairly quickly. Then run a variance report once per week to see how far off your bartenders are as a group.
2. Spot-Checking – Once or twice per week, choose a bartender to spot-check. This will usually happen on a slower night when they are working by themselves. Before their shift, choose 10 of your biggest movers and count them. Then count those same 10 after the shift is over. Do not tell the bartender you are doing it. With only 10 products to count, this should only take you 5 - 10 minutes. Then run a variance report for those 10 products to see how individual bartenders are pouring. With the bluetooth scale, you’re able to see down to the 1/100th of an oz. how accurately they are pouring. You can then sit down with them to show them how they did and how they can improve. This sort of communication magically brings your variance percentage way down and your bar profits way up.
You can’t do that with a traditional system...or you can, but add on an hour or two to the process.
BUT HOW MUCH DOES A BAR INVENTORY APP COST?
Ahhh, the golden question, and one that needs to be asked. Luckily, here at Bar Patrol, our mission statement (paraphrased) is to help as many bar owners and managers as possible who want a cutting-edge inventory system in place without adding a huge monthly expense to their budget.
And because we didn’t raise $15 million+ from venture capitalists to pay a large sales staff and advertise heavily like some of the other companies out there, we are able to offer the most powerful, affordable and relevant bar inventory app on the market.
It’s the truth. Bar Patrol App has the same or more features than 90% of the other inventory systems out there at 1/4th the cost. You can click here to view our pricing and compare it to the other major bar inventory apps and systems out there.
In fact, we get more new clients who switch from other companies to use Bar Patrol App than from anywhere else, and this is because they realize that they were paying $150 - $300 per month for a system that does the exact same thing as Bar Patrol App for only $59 per month.
I’M NOT SURE, I STILL HAVE QUESTIONS
No problem, the best way to get a clear picture and idea for how Bar Patrol App works is to watch the demo video here. You can also schedule a screen share demo here if you want, but the demo video will show you most of what you can do with Bar Patrol App.
OK, I’M READY TO TURN IN MY CAVEMAN CLUB...
HOW DO I GET STARTED?
If you’re ready to start your New Year off with a bang, you can click here and go to the registration page to sign-up.
If you have any questions at all that you couldn’t find on the website, we invite you to send us a message here on the Contact Page.
Thanks again for being here, and welcome to the 21st century and a new way of doing business.
Cheers, until next time,
Dave
Read Full Article
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 
Bar Patrol by Dave Allred, Bar Patrol - 5M ago
Be honest with yourself. Are you actually pleased with your restaurant website? I mean, when you think about people surfing the Web and searching for a good place to eat and drink in your area, do you make your fingers into a teepee and drum them together like Mr. Burns from The Simpsons while saying, "Exxxxxcellent," because you know your website is so irresistibly tantalizing, it's like pouring a puddle of honey near an ant hill and it’s inevitable they will come marching in one-by-one?
If your answer is “Ummm, no, not really,” or if you’re talking to your screen right now saying, “Nah, my website is good enough,” then first, stop talking to your screen like a mental patient, and second, think about this:
89% of people eat out AT LEAST once per month.
86% of those people check menus online before deciding on a place to eat.
74% order take out AT LEAST once per month.
So ask yourself, “If people are looking online for which restaurants eat at, does my website measure up to the competition?”
In addition, are people able to get on your website and place a to-go order and pay for it so all they have to do is pick it up?
If not, those 86% looking for a place to eat online may go somewhere else, and those 74% ordering take-out will probably do the same.
Now, take your fingers out of your mouth and stop biting your nails because of massive overwhelm. Not only do I have a solution for you, I have a KICK-ASS solution for you.
In the video below, I’m going to show you exactly how to build an awesome restaurant website withWix that will have people flocking to your doors like birds swarming on a sandwich dropped in a Walmart parking lot.
And the cost of this little gem? That’s the best part. The cost to build your awesome restaurant website ranges from free to around $20 per month if you want all the bells and whistles.
$20 PER MONTH to add menus and online ordering!
And with the awesome Wix templates, you could literally have your site up and running within an hour or two.
So check out the video below, and if you have any questions, feel free to ask on the Contact page.
Enjoy and I’ll see you next time.
HOW TO BUILD AN AWESOME RESTAURANT WEBSITE WITH WIX
Cheers,
Dave
Read Full Article
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 
Bar Patrol by Dave Allred, Bar Patrol - 5M ago
If you've been dreaming ever since you were a child about how you could make a restaurant fail quickly, and you're ready to walk the walk and take some serious action to make your dream a reality, I'm here for you.
Here are 11 highly-effective and powerful tactics that will help you drive your restaurant business into the ground faster than you can say "bankruptcy".
1. KEEP IT MESSY
If you're looking to stamp out repeating customers from the get-go, there's nothing like a smelly, dirty, sticky, fermented restaurant with plenty of fruit flies hovering over the bar to ensure that first-timers never come back again. The worst thing you can do here is have some clean towels and hot soapy water at the end of the night to wipe everything down. Cleanliness will only encourage paying customers to return.
2. ALLOW YOUR BARTENDERS TO SET THE STANDARD
This is a fantastic way to go out of business in the quickest way possible. Allowing your bartenders to go unmonitored, pouring heavy and giving away drinks to regulars and friends has the same effect on your profits as poking a hole in an inner tube with an ice pick and watching it leak and deflate until there's nothing left but a rubbery, misshapen blob.
The best way to execute this strategy is to trust that your bartenders are unlike all the other bartenders on this planet and assume that they would never steal or give away drinks. After all, it's just money. What could they possibly want with that?
3. ASSUME YOUR STAFF CAN FIGURE IT OUT ON THEIR OWN
Training is for winners and people who want to succeed (gag!). For those of us pursuing failure, releasing your staff on to the floor to wander aimlessly like a waddle of curious penguins is the perfect way to achieve the failure you're looking for.
Who needs customer service and menu knowledge and teamwork and efficiency? Or up-selling, the Kryptonite of failure.
Remember, an untrained staff = an ignorant, indifferent staff, which is a staff you can be proud of on your way to the bottom.
4. KEEP MARKETING THE SAME WAY YOU'VE BEEN DOING IT
Attracting throngs of new paying customers is the fastest way for you to fail at failing. If you find that your marketing dollars simply don't seem to have much bang for the buck and you feel like you're flushing money right down the toilet, just keep doing what you're doing until your business is lying on a desert highway gasping for its last breath while vultures circle overhead.
5. BE INVISIBLE
Being present and ensuring that high standards are being met in the business is heading in the exact opposite direction of your goal. To remedy this positive tactic, simply disappear into your office to play solitaire on the computer or roam Facebook for funny memes you can share with the world.
If you want to become a master of invisibility, tell the bartender that you are going to check out the competition down the street to see how busy they are and then go get sloshed.
6. SIT AT THE BAR AND DRINK
Nothing will sling-shot you down the fast track of failure faster than a sloppy owner or manager who slurs at his/her guests and complains about health reform or (for the less-intellectual) how much the Jets suck. If you really want to turn it up a notch, be the creepy-drunk owner and walk up next to a guest sitting at the bar and rest your hand on their lower back or leg. Trust me: when it comes to failing, this is a home run.
7. ALWAYS BE RIGHT
No matter how unhappy a guest is in your place--even if their food came out overcooked or they had to wait 40 minutes for their appetizers--always justify why it happened and make them feel small for questioning the way you do things in your place.
Whatever you do, don't approach the table and ask if everything is ok or make things right by apologizing. Kindness and humility might make them come back, and repeat customers will destroy your dream of failure.
8. PROVIDE A PAINT-DRYING EXPERIENCE
Surely you've heard the expression, "It's like watching paint dry," inferring a dull or even painful experience because it seems to take forever. A true ninja at restaurant failure will make sure to provide such an experience for his/her guests.
Promptness is the enemy here. When guests walk in, do not greet or even acknowledge them until it's clear they aren't going to leave. Then approach them with a heavy, indignant sigh.
After seating them, again, do not greet them for at least 5 - 7 minutes or until they are swiveling their heads around like an office chair looking for a server. Whichever comes first.
Refills? Don't even think about it. Shouldn't have sucked that Coke down so fast, Mr. Slurpy McSlurp.
Continue in this fashion until they are clearly frustrated and your table turnover rate is almost non-existent.
9. NEVER CHANGE YOUR MENU OR OFFER SPECIALS
Fresh and creative menu items and happy hour specials keep butts in the seats and the cash flowing, which will definitely hamper your ability to fail. There is an easy remedy to this though: keep the same boring menu and offer no specials or fun deals and people will eventually get the message and go somewhere else to spend their cash.
10. NEVER PUT SYSTEMS IN PLACE
Ugh! Systems. There's nothing like a well-organized and systemized business to absolutely destroy your objective to fail. Systems are designed to make everyone's life easier and for profits to increase on grand scale. If you're really serious about failing, you need to get your priorities straight and come in to work (late of course) and just wing it. "Winging it" is basically flipping-off systems with a big fat middle finger that says "F-you, success. You'll never win while I'm in charge."
11. TREAT YOUR STAFF LIKE A BUNCH OF PEONS
Communicating, listening and supporting your staff is the fast track to success. Which in your case is failure. Because you’re trying to fail. So success would be failing. Got it?
Besides allowing them to go untrained and unmonitored, make sure to chastise each of them in front of each other to humiliate them and make them feel bitter towards you so that on a daily basis you can be assured that they will put out as little effort as possible as a revenge for the resentment they feel for you.
Appreciation and words of encouragement should be avoided at all costs. And if these tactics don’t quite push you to the brink of failure with your staff, you can be confident that sleeping with one of them and then ignoring them at work will push the train right off the cliff.
I hope this was a helpful lesson for all the aspiring failing businessmen and women out there.
I have to be honest though, I secretly hope you all fail at failing on a massive level and that instead you make a million this week.
Cheers, until next time.
Dave
Read Full Article
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 
Welcome to part II of the TouchBistro POS demo and review, where I'm going to pull the curtain back and give you a behind-the-scenes look at how the TouchBistrodashboard cloud reporting works and all the crazy-amazing stats and analytical information you can extract from the back end of these reports.
If you haven't yet watched the TouchBistro iPad demo and review, where I provide a full walkthrough of the front-of-the-house system and its amazing features, you can click here to check it out. Not only will you be wowed by the modern look and feel of it, but it's so easy to use, you could hire your 5 year old nephew to take orders from your guests.
Just like the iPad, the cloud reporting is ridiculously easy-to-use and understand and it provides detailed insights that guides you to take logical and actionable steps to improve the overall performance of your bar and restaurant (you'll see what I mean inside the video).
As far as I'm concerned, no other restaurant POS system provides the same powerful, yet easy-to-use system for the same price with the same outstanding support. Just sayin'.
WATCH THE TOUCHBISTRO DASHBOARD DEMO
To give you a taste, there are more than 50 detailed reports built into the TouchBistro cloud reporting, with a plethora (love that word) of options, including:
Total SalesMenu Item, Category, and Promotion SalesStatistical Summary (avg. spend, avg. # of customers)Payments & Payment TypesShift, Staff Tips, and Staff ActivityDiscounts, Voids, and DeletionsTaxes and General AccountingInventory Tracking by IngredientUp to the minute in-shift snapshot reports personalized to each staff member and available at any timeComprehensive end-of-day summary reports generated automatically
And that's just a snap shot. What you'll also notice in the video are the many benefits you get from using the cloud reporting, with the ability to increase sales, monitor staff performance, and make intelligent decisions about how to increase your profits. It's flat out awesome.
I won't spoil the ending or tell you who the murderer is. You can watch for yourself.
Again, you can click here to contact TouchBistro at anytime. From my experience so far, they've been great, and in my opinion they provide the most bang-for-the-buck, which of course is our motto here at Bar Patrol.
Enjoy and I'll see you next time. Make a million.
Dave
Read Full Article
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 
If I had a nickel for every time someone asked me how to lower their bar and food cost percentage, I could have purchased my bourbon Slushee machine by now, but since nobody gives me nickels for such questions, I'll have to be content with mixing my bourbon up with ice in a blender.
Nevertheless, I have a new quick training video in which I'm going to give you seven ways right now you can start using immediately to lower your cost percentage and raise your bar and restaurant profits right away.
Let's remember that the 2nd part of this formula is the most important: increasing your profits. I find that so many owners and managers get caught up in percentages and it can actually hurt their business.
For instance, if all you care about is low cost percentage, then you should just go ahead and buy and pour well liquor all the time, because it pours at about 5 - 6% on average. BAM! Problem solved.
Thank you, and goodnight...
Nope, hold your horses right there. Problem not solved at all. Even though you are making 95% profit, the actual money you make per shot is around $4.70 (assuming you charge $5 per shot).
On the other side, a shot of Grey Goose might run you 17% pour cost, making you 83% profit, but assuming you charge $8 for Grey Goose, you're making around $6.50 per shot.
I will cover this concept more in an upcoming blog post so you can see how it works, but I hope for now you can understand that $1.80 more per shot is better than 12% better cost percentage. The extra money goes into your bank account, not your percentages.
Your goal here is to find the sweet spot, because lower cost percentage overall does mean more profits.
If the whole cost percentage thing is still a bit hazy for you, you can click here to watch my video on how to calculate your bar and restaurant cost percentage and why it's important.
With that said, let's get on with it. Click below to watch the video and how to lower your bar and food cost percentage immediately, and if you have any questions at all, make sure to email us at info@barpatrol.net and we'll be happy to answer them.
7 WAYS TO LOWER YOUR BAR & FOOD
COST PERCENTAGE IMMEDIATELY
Cheers, until next time,
Dave
Read Full Article
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 
Bar Patrol by Dave Allred, Bar Patrol - 6M ago
As I continue to get questions from bar & restaurant owners and managers about the best restaurant POS system to choose, and since I've selected TouchBistro as the #1 bar and restaurant POS system, I want to make sure to give you a complete and transparent behind-the-scenes view of the system so you can see exactly how it works.
In this tutorial I provide an in-depth look at the iPad (the front-of-the-house system) and all of it's features, functions, bells and whistles--and there are quite a few, to say the least.
WATCH THE iPAD DEMO
In the next post we will go into even more depth as I head into the back-end of TouchBistro and look at their cloud reporting which is so easy to understand it makes running reports on other legacy POS systems seem like you're dissecting Shakespeare's The Tempest.
The iPad is no different. The aesthetics and ease-of-use are as pleasing as punch (spiked, if you'd prefer), it's cost-effective and it's great for both small and large restaurants alike.
Designed for food venues of all shapes and sizes (from food truck to corporate restaurant giants), TouchBistro is a remarkable POS system that runs solely on iPads, which might seem strange to some, but with its capabilities to fulfill table-side orders or simply be a permanent fixture like traditional POS systems, TouchBistro is a versatile, modern system that is able to meet a wide range of needs.
Other features include:
Table-side paymentsAbility to email receipt to customer right from the tableEditable floor plan and layout on the flyEdit menu pricing and description right from the iPadSplit checksCustom modifiersForced modifiers (great for upselling)Items on tab can be easily moved from guest to guest within a single checkTables show how long guests have been seatedTable sections are color-coded and assigned to a server, making it easier for hosts to seat evenlyTake reservations
That's just a taste. You'll want to watch the demo video as I walk you through all the functions and capabilities so you can see exactly what you're getting.
And then when you're ready, you'll want to schedule a demowith a TouchBistro professional so they can answer all of your questions.
You can click here at anytime to visit the TouchBistro website and learn more.
Hope you enjoy, and I'll see you next time. Make a million this week.
Cheers,
Dave
Read Full Article
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 
Bar Patrol by Dave Allred, Bar Patrol - 7M ago
"Pffft...Corporate restaurants" (imagine my best scoffing declaration of disgust)!
You want to know how to suck the soul from a perfectly good restaurant and bludgeon its culture to bloody oblivion? Turn it over to a corporation and watch its livelihood being sucked from it like a vampire draining his victim until he/she is pale and bloodless.
Ok, sorry, but it helps if I can vent all my negative feelings towards evil empires and get them out of me, like sucking snake venom from a bite, so that I can express myself in a healthier and more unbiased manner.
The truth is, I don't really have anything against corporations. In fact, I order take-out from Panda Express and Chipotle so much that they call out my name when I walk in.
It's more of a feeling of loss to me when I see so many chain restaurants dominating an area, a nostalgic loss, like that feeling of sitting in a big comfy chair at a quaint bookstore and reading a book. A real book. With paper and stuff. Those places are nearly extinct.
I'm not saying I don't have an iPad loaded with books on my Kindle app, because I do, and I love having 500 books that I can hold in one hand. But there's something about the days of yesteryear, for no other reason than I love when individuality reigned supreme (I swear I'm getting to the educational part of this article soon).
Think about when you walk into a dive bar. You may not like the dinginess or filth that may exist, but there's something mysterious and uncharted about it. You won't find that same bar anywhere on the planet (for better or worse).
Now, I will say that the reason we all love the corporate cookie-cutter style bars and restaurants of today is because of the familiarity it provides, but there is no wonderment or "tingling" of the senses when you walk in. The culture and staff appear uninspired and methodical. Your curiosity becomes deadened by sameness and predictability. In our lives, we call that a rut. That's what corporations feel like to me sometimes: a rut.
HOWEVER...
And this is a big however, especially when you're a business owner and what you care about most at the end of the day is making a profit so your kids don't get dropped off at school wearing Kleenex boxes for shoes.
The feelings I've expressed towards corporations thus far have been from a consumer/customer stand-point. But when we look at chains from a business owner stand-point, everything gets flipped on its keister.
Here it is: in general, when it comes to profit percentage, chain restaurants make nearly double what individual restaurants make. Despite what we think of them as consumers, they are doing their best to defeat the old dismal "85%-of-restaurants-go-out-of-business-in- -their-first-3-years" statistic. And many of them do it very well.
And in this sense, I salute them as I would a U.S. war veteran (actually, I would salute them a level just below that, because veterans who protect us are heroic and brave and totally more awesome than a chain restaurant).
WHY ARE CHAIN RESTAURANTS SO MUCH MORE PROFITABLE?
There's one answer here and one answer only that matters, and the only answer you should care about:
SYSTEMS...
That's it.
Not like, "That's it, see you later."
More like, "That's it, stop worrying about how you can squeeze more money out of karaoke night."
I'm not saying it's simple to put systems in place. I'm saying that systemizing your bar/restaurant is what you should be focusing on the most if you want to run a more profitable business, and it will eventually make your life simpler once they are in place.
I've been preaching systems heavily for the past three years now because after working with and speaking with hundreds of bar/restaurant owners and managers, I can see the pattern, and it's consistent as hell.
The ones that systemize are killing it. The ones that show up on a daily basis and just sort of wing it and hope for the best are in big fucking trouble.
What it comes down to is systemizing your business puts you at a huge advantage when it comes to controlling costs (food, bar and labor), training your staff, saving you time and increasing productivity, and perhaps the most important one of all for people like you and me: providing a more consistent customer experience.
As dull as it may sound, people LOVE familiarity and knowing that they can get the same thing every time they walk into a restaurant. That's why chains like Starbuck's and McDonald's are so popular: I can get the same Big Mac here in Martinez, CA as I can in Chicago, IL. It's comforting to know that.
But here's the exciting part: you can do the same thing at your bar/restaurant without becoming a sterile clone, meaning you don't have to sacrifice your vision, your originality or your culture. Providing a consistent customer experience is nothing more than creating a set of rules that everyone follows so that people get that same feeling of familiarity and comfort when they think of your business.
Think about it: one day, on a whim, you decide to try a new bar/restaurant that you've never been to before, and when you get there you order a Mai Tai and a Porterhouse, medium-rare with a side of mashed potatoes and seasonal veggies. You find the Mai Tai a balanced combination of booze and juices, the steak is cooked perfectly, the mashed potatoes creamy and the veggies are broiled with just the right amount of crispiness. And the server? Completely attentive, warm, knowledgable and friendly. Your feeling of that new place: "I'm definitely coming back here!"
However, the next time you come in, you order the exact same thing, because we are creatures of habit. But this time the Mai Tai tastes completely different, way too much juice and no dark rum on top. The steak and veggies are overcooked, the potatoes are lumpy, and you can't get a goddamn refill on your water.
How do you feel? Disoriented.
Are you coming back? Fat chance.
By simply putting systems in place, by building a business of consistency, you can avoid this disaster from ever happening to you. And as we all know, it is WAAAAY cheaper to build recurring customers than it is to acquire new ones.
WHAT SYSTEMS SHOULD YOU PUT IN PLACE?
Great question, so glad you asked.
As we've already discussed, going "cookie-cutter" might seem a bit sterile, so what you need to do is build systems that mimic chain restaurants, but that are still customized to your business.
Here are the systems that the successful chain restaurants put in place that ensure consistency, productivity and increased profits:
1. FINANCIAL SYSTEMS
We start with financial systems because if you aren't tracking what's going on in your business on a daily, weekly and monthly basis, you can't see where you're leaking profits and how to fix them. Chain restaurants have their finances locked-in to ensure they are retaining every dollar that walks through the door. If you have very minimal financial systems in place (or none at all), you are welcome to start hereand check out the daily, weekly and monthly financial templates our clients use to systemize this part of their business. We house these templates on my other site, TheRealBarman.com.
2. INVENTORY SYSTEMS
Yes, you all know how much I love inventory and preach having a quality system in place, and that's because this is the low hanging fruit. Every smart chain restaurant has a quality inventory system in place, and by "quality" I mean modern. No more spreadsheets.
The reason I run an inventory management company is not because I love counting shit, it's because this is the fastest and easiest way to immediately increase your profits by thousands of dollars each month by stopping the negligence going on behind the bar. You're already on the website here, butyou can click here to see how Bar Patrol works at anytime.
3. STAFF SYSTEMS
This involves how you hire and train your staff so that you make sure:
1) They aren't numbskulls (that's the hiring part), and
2) They deliver an outstanding, consistent experience every time (that's the training part).
Check Out:
And the only way to ensure the 2nd one is to put in a set of rules that states exactly what they should say and how they should say it (using their own personalities, of course). Remember, that's all systemizing is: a set of rules. Though many owners and managers don't think about it, customer service is something that should be systemized. It's not just telling them to smile and be happy.
The following video is an example of a set of rules we offer owners and managers to give them an idea of how to systemize their customer service. You are welcome to customize it any way you want. Check out the video here:
4. MARKETING SYSTEMS
From weekly, monthly and annual promotions to using social media to word-of-mouth, marketing is possibly the most difficult area to systemize. There are a million different ways to do it, and even when you choose a way, you then have to execute it to perfection to make it work. When it comes right down to it, your staff is your #1 marketing tool, because as I've already mentioned, if you can get your customers to come back, it will be more profitable for you. Not to mention the natural word-of-mouth marketing those customers will do for you.
However, after the staff is well-trained at customer service, you need to take it to the next level. I have quite a few tricks up my sleeve when it comes to marketing, but for the past year or so, I met a guy who absolutely kills it for his clients in the area of bar/restaurant marketing, so to keep things simple, I've been sending people straight to him. He is the Jedi Master of bar/restaurant marketing. Not only is his system for marketing bringing in a boatload of money for bars and restaurants, he GUARANTEES you will make back $500 for every $100 you spend, or you get your money back, so you have nothing to lose.
For starters I would get his free book which has tons of value in it. You can check him out here: Nick Fosberg, Bar & Restaurant Success Free Book
Even though there are other areas for systemizing, I'll stop there for the day so as not to overwhelm you. If you concentrated on just these 4 areas, using a set of rules you create and a series of checklists, you would see substantial improvement in your productivity and your profits that mirror the success of chain restaurants.
SIDE NOTE: I'm also in the process of finishing a new course, Systemize Your Bar/Restaurant, which covers all of these areas in great detail. I basically hold your hand and tell you exactly how to systemize your business from top to bottom with templates and checklists and personal support. The whole enchilada.
If you'd like to get in on the Early Bird special, let me know. I'm offering a substantial discount to the course for those who get on the list. You can email me at info@barpatrol.net and just put "Early Bird Special" in the subject line, and we'll message you when the pre-release of the course comes out.
Have a great week. Make a million. See you next time.
Cheers,
Dave
Read Full Article
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 
In the past year, I've become obsessed with systemizing. Seriously. Mostly for my business and my clients, but I find myself thinking about it in other areas of my life as well.
Coaching basketball. My kids' homework. Paying my bills. Everything.
Ask my wife.
"If you mention the word 'systemize' one more time in this house," she told me the other day, "I'm going to kick you right in the balls."
Which is comical, because she's actually better at it than me. Systemizing, not kicking people in the balls.
Despite my obsession, there is no denying that systemizing your business breeds gigantic results, from finances to inventory management to your staff to marketing to check lists and job duties.
I'm just going to say it: Systemizing is AMAZING!!! It gives you a clear vision of what you're doing on a daily basis, and it provides everyone with job duties, as well as checks and balances.
In order to help bars and restaurant owners and managers succeed, I have created 4 excel templates designed specifically for bars and restaurants:
1. The Daily Sales & Cash Reconciliation Template
2. The Weekly Sales & Prime Cost Report Template
3. The Weekly Cash Flow Management Template
4. The Monthly Profit/Loss Statement Template
I'm going to provide a separate blog post for each template so you don't get overwhelmed. Small chunks work best for absorbing and digesting information.
Now, on my Youtube channel I started with the daily template and moved up to monthly, which is a logical progression of time, from most frequent (daily) to least frequent (monthly).
For this blog sequence I'm going to start with the Restaurant Profit/Loss Statement because I believe it's the most sought after so I want to get it out first.
Also, I love the profit/loss template we use because it has all 12 months of the year in one template, PLUS it shows prime cost for the month which is awesome, PLUS it has current month and year-to-date data.
If you want the template for yourself (or any of the other templates) you can get it here on the resource page of my other site TheRealBarman.com.
In addition, for your convenience, I am providing this information in both written form and video because I know how particular everyone is and because we live in a day and age when everyone has to be accommodated or I get sued somehow.
Let's get to it.
HOW TO READ A RESTAURANT PROFIT LOSS STATEMENT
WATCH THE VIDEO
HOW OFTEN DO I RUN A PROFIT/LOSS?
The P & L is most commonly used on a monthly basis, but you could run it weekly if you are a mega-on-top-of-things type of owner, or on a yearly basis if you are a mega-lazy-and-apathetic-and-didn’t-give-a-shit-about-your-business type of owner. Your choice.
Weekly is great, but most owners and managers have a thousand chainsaws to juggle, so I recommend monthly, as it gives you a good overview of your business. For weekly analysis we use the Weekly Sales & Prime Cost Report, as well as the Weekly Cash Flow template.
THE BASIC SECTIONS
The P & L is broken down into three main sections:
The Revenue (money coming in)COGS, or Cost of Goods Sold (money going outExpenses
The result of those three will give you your profit or loss at the bottom, but it’s important to know that those three sections tell a story about what’s going on in your business, beyond the profit/loss at the bottom.
Hiding in the middle are the reasons WHY your profit or loss is what it is, and that’s what you need to be analyzing.
THE BREAKDOWN
Let’s quickly breakdown the three main sections, and then for a more detailed look on how all this works, make sure to watch video.
SALES – As I mentioned, this is money coming in, and the more you break it down, the easier it is to spot problem areas. Take a look:
In this example it's broken down as Food and Non-Alcoholic drinks, then four categories of bar products, then Retail and Miscellaneous to cover everything else.
You can break it down however you want, but the more detailed you have it, the easier it is to compare it to the standards you have set so you can see if you're hitting those standards.
From here you will simply run a report from your POS or cash register and enter all of your sales for the month. In this example you can see that sales for the month totaled $103,122 and year-to-date (YTD) is $212,468. The percentage column shows the percentage of overall sales for each category (i.e. 69.3% of their total sales came from food).
COST OF GOODS SOLD (COGS) - Again, this is money going out, or money you spend on the products you are selling. Yes, they are expenses, but they are separate from the Expenses section, which focus on operating expenses.
As you can see, the COGS categories match the Sales categories so we can get cost percentages and compare them to industry standards, which we have listed to the right of each category so you can compare them right on the spot. We also need to remember that industry averages can vary based on the style of restaurant, but this gives us an overall view. Check it out:
As you can see here, we can look at both the current month and the YTD to see how we compare to industry averages. This is only two months worth of data (Jan & Feb) so the YTD is somewhat similar, but let's take a look.
The industry average for food is 28 – 32%, and based on this report, we’re running consistently at 39%. OUCH! We either need to order less, raise our prices, cut down on waste or find new vendors.
For Non-Alcoholic, the industry average is 10 – 15% and in February we were high at 21.6% but overall we are at 14.2%, which is all that matters.
You are going to have fluctuations, but as long as the overall numbers are good, that’s what we’re looking for. This is why it’s so important to have YTD numbers so you don’t have to sift back through the months and try to figure out all out by calculator for every single category.
You can go right down the list here and see how each category compares to the industry averages so you can make adjustments on spending, ordering, pricing and tracking your products.
LABOR EXPENSES – With expenses we start with labor, because now that we have sales and COGS taken care of, once we enter our labor, we can view our Prime Cost, which is one of the most important metrics to track.
Many profit/loss templates don’t include the prime cost calculation, which is a shame because all the information is right there. Prime cost, in a nutshell, is the money you spend on your COGS + Labor. To get a prime cost percentage, divide that total by your sales. As you’ll see in the next example, the prime cost industry standard is 60 – 65%.
Take a look:
If we head directly down to the green bar, we can see right off the bat that we have problems. Prime cost is at 72%.
So checking labor, we again have standards to the right to compare to for Management, Hourly Staff and Employee Benefits. All three of those are within a reasonable amount compared to the standards, so we know labor is ok for now, though we are always looking to improve it still.
Based on earlier analysis, we know that the food cost is the major culprit. Bring food cost down to industry standard will greatly lower our prime cost.
OPERATING EXPENSES - Finally, we move into operating expenses, both controllable (code name for variable costs, for the most part) and uncontrollable (sort of fixed costs).
This template is an overview profit/loss statement which groups a lot of detailed expenses into broader categories. Again, I always preach details, so the more detailed you get on your expenses, the better.
I created this template because many of the average mid-sized bar/restaurants don’t even use a profit/loss statement, so I want them to complete it each month without being too overwhelmed, but you can have one created that’s very similar to this one with all the lines of details you need to track everything.
Here are the expenses as they are tracked in this template:
Again, on the right we have a couple of industry standards for Occupancy Costs and then the most important one, Profit/Loss before taxes.
Sad, isn’t it? The average bar/restaurant is making 3 – 6% profit.
In this example, this business is in the hole nearly $6,000 for the month, which means it’s time to get busy finding ways to start increasing sales and controlling expenses or they will be out of business quickly.
That’s a quick rundown of the profit/loss statement and what areas you need to be looking for in order to maximize your profits each month.
Here is a snapshot of the entire profit/loss template:
Again, if you would like to get this template click here to head to the resource page. But whatever you do, whether you use the one we use or another one, make sure you’re using SOMETHING to track your sales, COGS and expenses each month.
Thanks for hanging out. See you next time.
Cheers,
Dave
Read Full Article
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 
POS companies suck! If you're a POS company and that offends you, I'm offended by your offense. Seriously! Where are you when we need you?
Sure, they're great in the beginning, when you're on the POS dating scene and they're trying to get into your pants.
It's all wine and lobster and good times, but the moment they close the deal and sign you up, you wake up the next morning to realize that the bed is empty and no matter how many times you dial the number, they won't return your call. Regret sets in. Especially if you signed a long-term contract.
This is my main issue with POS companies. Many of them have great (or at least good) features and perform the basic tasks that are required, but the people behind the product are rarely available for support, or you have to pay an exorbitant amount for tech support each month just to get them on the phone.
All of this--and the fact that I have owners and managers asking me all the time about which POS system they should invest in--inspired me to take on a sort of RealBarman Consumer Affairs challenge to find the best POS systems out there so you don't have to.
Which meant I had to roll up my sleeves and do some research, so I went out and started using and working with the top 10 most popular POS systems on the market, but I didn't stop there. I also spoke with more than two dozen owners and managers who are my acquaintances and my clients and got their feedback on those very same systems.
In addition, I sent out surveys to other owners and managers asking what systems they liked best. I used our Bar & Restaurant Facebook Group as a resource as well and asked our members there.
I took all this information to come up with the top 5 systems that I could recommend to my audience and those who come to me personally, which has allowed me to feel confident about my answer now, instead of just going by hearsay. Warm fuzzies for all.
And do you know what? In the process I found some good ones. And some really bad ones. But I was thrilled to discover that the POS world is evolving to provide modern technology, and even some decent support and service on occasion.
For this article, I chose to narrow my list to the top 5 POS systems you should be looking at, because you don't need to analyze the top 53 systems and have your head swimming like a cartoon cat who just had a frying pan dropped on his head.
Simple and compact is better.
You'll also notice that we are trying to get away from the old legacy systems (Aloha, Micros, etc.). These are outdated, expensive and clunky, with poor service. Unless they jump on board quick, they are going to be the dodo bird of POS world.
So let's do this, David Letterman style, with a countdown from #5 to #1.
THE TOP 5 BAR & RESTAURANT POS SYSTEMS
#5 - REVEL SYSTEMS
OVERVIEW: Revel is one of the most robust systems around. It was founded in 2010 and was one of the first to use an iPad as part of the POS system. Revel is geared towards bars, restaurants and retail and has very good reporting. The main knock on Revel is that it's so robust that some say it's a bit too complex to get set-up and learn, and it is also one on the higher end, pricing-wise.
WHAT'S GOOD ABOUT IT:
Robust ReportingCRM (Customer Relationship Management)Employee ManagementTable ManagementOnline OderingDiscountsCustomer Loyalty ProgramIntuitive InterfaceOffline Mode
WHAT'S NOT SO GOOD:
The set-up and learning curve for all it's features can be complexOverall interface is user-friendly but confusing in some spotsSome reported"glitchiness" in terms of syncing issues and being disconnectedCost is pricey compared to other similar POS systemsOpen API access requires more moneyCompany seems to have some A.D.D. when it comes to focusing on what's important. Straddles the fence between restaurants and retail.No free trial to see if you like it
SUPPORT (GOOD)
Revel offers 24/7 customer support. I have received mixed reviews about their service. Some say it has been fine, while others say it's a grind to get someone to help them with the learning curve or reconfiguring to fit their needs. I have a couple clients who use them and they say that the customer service and support is decent for the POS industry.
PRICING (HIGH)
Costs are unclear but little birds tell me it's up to $2,500 for set-up and hardware. Monthly fees are also added and depends on number of terminals
OVERALL
Certainly a player when it comes to the POS industry, and nobody can question the robustness of their technology and reporting. I enjoyed using it, though it wasn't as intuitive in some areas as I would have liked. Nevertheless, a quality POS system for sure, but you can find the same for a lot less, and the fact that they don't have a free trial period really annoys the shit out of me considering how expensive they are. In addition, the fact that they also focus a lot of their energy on the retail side and don't specialize in bars and restaurants makes me a bit squirmy, like going to get laser eye surgery from a doctor who specializes in feet and eyes.
#4 - SQUARE
OVERVIEW: Launched in 2009, Square remains a popular choice for many smaller bars, restaurants, fast food and retail stores. They were also one of the first mobile processing systems with inbuilt swipe technology. The overall take on Square is that it is one of the more inexpensive POS systems on the market, with all the basics you need to get started.
WHAT'S GOOD ABOUT IT:
All-in-One Payment SystemFree Tools For Selling OnlineCRM (Customer Relationship Management)Employee ManagementPayroll (Additional Cost)DiscountsCustomer Loyalty ProgramIntuitive InterfaceEasy Set-upGood for smaller venuesTransparent, Affordable Pricing
WHAT'S NOT SO GOOD:
Not specifically designed for for bars & restaurantsLack of detailed reportingReports of account freezes and glitchesNot ideal for larger venues or sales, as flat fee could get expensiveNo free trial (but price is low, so not a big deal here).
PRICING (LOW)
Pricing is simple here. There is no monthly subscription fee. Instead Square uses a flat 2.75% fee on every swiped transaction, 3.5% + $0.15 for keyed transactions, and 2.9% + $0.30 for online transactions. However, for larger volume places, the transactions costs can add up in a hurry.
SUPPORT (AVERAGE)
Support has been reported as being friendly and knowledgable, but here's the real kicker that would have me hitting the back arrow to find another POS system real quick. They claim 24/7 support, until you read the fine print and realize the 24/7 means you can go on to their website and read articles in their help section, and we all know how awesome that is to do when you're balls-deep in the weeds at 9:00 p.m. on a Saturday night.
In reality they have regular business support hours:
Mon-Fri, 6am-6pm EST Sat-Sun, 6am-6pm EST
This is fine for the retail industry, but it looks like bars and restaurants that operate at night are shit-out-of-luck if something goes wrong. Not cool.
OVERALL
Square is a great option for anyone who wants to get up and running quickly and does not have "robust features and reporting" as one of its wish list items. It is also a cheaper option for smaller venues with the flat fee rate if you don't really care about tracking which credit cards you've taken or that you'll pay more on debit card transactions overall than the norm. I was impressed with its easy-to-use interface, but for me, it was way too simplistic when it came to real restaurant-based features and reporting, and again, they have a huge footprint in the retail sector which brings up that whole lack of specialization thing.
#3 - TOAST
OVERVIEW: Founded in 2012, Toast has great front-end and back-end features at competitive pricing. While using it I could see why so many servers & bartenders raved about using it. Very user-friendly
WHAT'S GOOD ABOUT IT:
Table-Side OrderingTable-Side PaymentsCRM ManagementEmployee ManagementGuest Online OrderingCustomer Loyalty CardsDecent Range of ReportsCustomized TippingDigital Gift CardsSplit ChecksModern, Intuitive Interface
WHAT'S NOT SO GOOD:
Locked into Toast credit card processing, which is more expensive than mostLocked into long-term lease with no way outReporting is better than some, but not greatNo free trialOnly Android-based; no iOS device
PRICING (MID-RANGE-COMPETITIVE)
Pricing is very reasonable for what you get. It starts at $79/terminal + $499 installation. Where Toast really gets you though is that they lock you into a contract for credit card processing and leave you no choice for other options.
SUPPORT (WEAK)
This alone dropped them from #2 to #3. I have read POS website reviews that say the support is good, but that hasn't matched the feelings from the owners and clients I've spoken with. Multiple owners have told me that they call tech support with a question and they often won't know the answer and say they will call back but don't. I personally did not have the greatest experience with them either. I called and spoke to a representative on a Saturday and told him I was giving an extensive review on their POS system and wanted to speak with someone about that and he said he doesn't really deal with those situations and someone would call me on Monday. No call. I then emailed them with a similar description of what I was doing. No return email. That turned me off big time.
OVERALL
The features and intuitive interface alone land Toast a #3 spot on this countdown. The servers and bartenders seem to like it quite a bit which is a big factor when choosing a POS, as they will be using it the most. It is competitively priced and they seem to be one of the front-runners of the new mobile tablet POS technology. However, the long term-lease and credit card process lock-in, along with the questionable and shaky tech support would make me pause and consider before purchasing.
#2 - BREADCRUMB
OVERVIEW: Breadcrumb has supposedly been built by servers and bartenders for the most intuitive approach for the staff, and I say supposedly, because lots of bar/restaurant industry companies like to say that, but it's not always true. In this case, I will say that the interface was very intuitive and easy to use, though the aesthetics weren't as pleasing as some. Like Toast, this is an iPad based POS system with the option to take your iPad right to the table and take orders and process payments. Also like Toast, they want to lock you into their payment processing plan.
WHAT'S GOOD ABOUT IT:
Specifically Designed For RestaurantsTable-Side OrderingTable-Side PaymentsStrong ReportingCRM (Customer Relationship Management)Employee ManagementCustomizable InterfaceEasy to use for staffPartnered With GrubHubOnline OderingDiscountsCustomer Loyalty ProgramOffline Mode
WHAT'S NOT SO GOOD:
Glitchy service signal issues, causing system to go downThey are a payment process company firstAdding modifiers, menu items can be tedious, as well as transferring tables and comping tabsAdding GrubHub is a large add-on expenseNo floor plan, split checks or custom tipsNo customer loyalty programNo PayPal or Quickbooks IntegrationNo free trial
SUPPORT (GOOD)
The overall support at Breadcrumb has been reported as quite good, which is what allowed them to leapfrog over Toast. They have 24/7 phone support, as well as online chat and tutorials. I have a few clients who use Breadcrumb and one of them allowed me to call tech support and pretend I had a problem and they were very friendly and responsive to my needs. For me, all POS systems will have cons, but if there is support there to help, I'm happy.
PRICING (MID-RANGE-COMPETITIVE)
Pricing is fair. A little higher than some, but still in that mid-range that's affordable for most mid-sized bars and restaurants.
Core: $99/mo. per location + $50 per additional terminal
Pro: $299/mo. per location + $50 per additional terminal
Set-up Fee: $1,000-ish
OVERALL
Though it seems like the Con list is a bit long, overall, Breadcrumb by Upserve is a very user-friendly and competent POS system, with modern table-side service. The biggest complaint seems to be about connectivity issues and the system going down, which is no small thing, as well as them locking you into the payment process deal, which can be a major regret for many owners. Though it's lacking a couple of features, I enjoyed using it. If you were to compare Toast and Breadcrumb side by side, Toast has a few better features while Breadcrumb has the support. You could flip-flop these two in the order based on your preference, but having a quality, intuitive system with great customer support lands this system at #2 for me.
And finally, the #1 POS system for bars and restaurants (drumroll please...even though you've probably already cheated and looked down before you were supposed to which makes you a total spoiler/downer)...
#1 - TOUCHBISTRO
OVERVIEW: Founded in 2012, this Toronto-based company is one of the pioneers of the iPad POS systems in which you can take orders and process payments at the table so you can do away with paper ordering and clunky POS systems. It is sleekly designed, easy-to-use (for both staff and owners/managers) and it is the #1 POS app on the Apple App Store in more than 35 countries. After using, testing and surveying more than a dozen POS systems, TouchBistro, with all of it's savvy features and reports, is hands down my favorite system, and the top-rated system among those I surveyed. In addition, there are no messy payment processing contracts, or any contracts at all. Use it as long as you like and cancel when you like, and that freedom brings a peace of mind many companies can't provide.
WHAT'S GOOD ABOUT IT:
Great For All-Sized Businesses, From Cafes & Food Trucks to Large Volume NightclubsBuilt Exclusively For the Bar & Food IndustryFree 24/7 Phone and Email SupportRobust and Aesthetically Pleasing ReportsView reporting from mobile phone appTable-Side OrderingTable-Side PaymentsReceipts E-mailed to CustomerModern, Intuitive InterfaceCRM ManagementEmployee ManagementGuest Online OrderingCustomer Loyalty CardsCustomized TippingDigital Gift CardsSplit ChecksiOS ProductFREE TRIAL
WHAT'S NOT SO GOOD:
Does not include an extensive inventory systemSome minor lag issues when switching between pagesDoes not offer comparison reporting over multiple locationsOccasional connectivity issues, though few and far between
PRICING (MID-RANGE-COMPETITIVE)
Pricing is very reasonable for what you get. It starts at $79/terminal + $499 installation. Where Toast really gets you though is that they lock you into a contract for credit card processing and leave you no choice for other options.
SUPPORT (GOOD)
I'm not going feed you horse shit and tell you it's filet mignon. The POS industry in general sucks at support and they have a looooooong way to go, but in my research with TouchBistro I found positive feedback from everyone, and my personal experience with them was excellent. They have a live person 24/7, as well as online tutorials.
OVERALL
Considering my pessimistic view of POS systems and companies, I couldn't be more fired up about finding TouchBistro. So much so that after using their system and speaking to my colleagues about it, I've since contacted TouchBistro and developed an affiliate partnership with them. That might sound biased, and it is. I only partner or affiliate with outstanding resources, tools and technology that I use or have used that I can recommend to my audience so they can have the most positive experience as well. In this case, TouchBistro has won me over as the most user-friendly, support-friendly and reasonably priced POS system on the market. AND they have a free trial. AND no contracts, limiting your risk.
CLICK HERE to set up a demo or free trial.
If you have any questions or comments at all about POS systems, or you just want to send me a silly cat video, feel free to email me at anytime.
I'll see you next time,
Cheers,
Dave
Read Full Article

Read for later

Articles marked as Favorite are saved for later viewing.
close
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

Separate tags by commas
To access this feature, please upgrade your account.
Start your free month
Free Preview