How to increase profitability for your bar or pub

22 Apr, 2024

Looking to increase profitability for your bar or pub?

Amid the cost-of-living crisis, predicting demand can feel almost impossible. Whether you run a gourmet gastropub or an independent tapas bar, it’s worth knowing about some of the most effective ways to guarantee a consistent revenue stream. We’ve outlined five of our top picks below.

Spot cost-saving opportunities

Reduced expenses can lead to increased revenue, so it’s worth being prudent.

Basic energy-efficiency improvements could make a surprising difference to overall running costs. Try to choose energy-saving LED bulbs for the accent lighting used in your pub; not only is LED lighting cheaper to buy and run but it lasts much longer than halogen options.

Automatic lighting is recommended for the customer toilets, which need not be illuminated when not in use. As for your products, try to audit regularly and remove any stock that doesn’t sell as often as you’d like.

Set up promotions

From one-off discounts to special offers on certain days, incentivising your customers could pay dividends. From happy hour to 2-for-1 burger Thursdays, you should carefully construe offers in line with customer preferences and local demand.

Increasingly, top pubs and restaurants are using dynamic pricing to capitalise on peak periods and maximise revenues. If you plan to put higher prices in place on weekends and Fridays, it could be worth strategically planning your promotions so that your team still benefits from the price hikes.


To get people into your pub, they need to know it’s there!

You don’t have to spend much money to advertise effectively. Leverage the power of social media to raise awareness of your brand and get people into your pub. Whether your focus is on customer retention or welcoming new faces, make sure to put time and effort into your online marketing strategies.

On channels like Facebook and Instagram for Business, you can promote your pub and get more people through the doors. From running competitions to providing menu updates – with irresistible photographic evidence – you’ll get your work into the public eye.

Revise your menu

If you serve food, it could be time to revisit your menu and refresh some of your offerings in line with current demand. Small plates are trendy and could also make your menu more accessible for those struggling with their budget amid the cost-of-living crisis.

Customers seeking a gastropub experience often favour smaller menus with select dishes. Pay close attention to the quality and origins of the food you serve.

Using locally sourced ingredients bolsters your relationship with suppliers, opening further opportunities for local and regional trade. If you do find yourself engaging with new suppliers, you might find it a good time to review your pub insurance needs so that you’re ready for unforeseen circumstances.

Boost your reviews

Finally, in the digital age, it’s crucial to remember that reviews are integral to your success.

Ensure that your business has an easily recognisable profile on popular review platforms like Tripadvisor and Google Maps. Its location should also be geographically accurate to make sure that your customers can find you without hassle!

At the end of each customer meal, politely asking for online feedback could increase your chances of building a positive review portfolio. For those who check reviews, your rating could be the most influential factor in the final decision between your business and that of a competitor.