Whether you’re running a bar and grill or an upscale nightclub, beer sales are going to make up a significant amount of your total revenue. Even if you’re attempting to capture the cocktail market in a certain area, America loves their beer way too much to convince everyone to throw away their pint glass and try something new (and likely more profitable). However, there is still plenty of profit to be made on your draft beer if you put together your system correctly. There are a lot of things that affect how much money you make from a pint of beer, so being aware of all those things can make a very drastic difference.
It’s also important to note that the profit you make selling draft beer versus the profits from cans or bottles is drastically higher; sometimes as much as double! Beer manufacturers need to pay for the container, the shiny label, and labor to put that all together when they roll out cans and bottles from their brewery, but when they keg their beer instead it is a much simpler and streamlined process. This means you only are paying for the beer in the keg; not the fancy marketing or the container. This is why it’s so important to have a good tap beer program in place and to know what it takes to have customers coming back for another pint of your draft beer.
The most important aspect of selling tap beer is that you need to keep your kegs at the proper temperature. If draft beer is too warm when it comes out of your taps, it will be flat, foamy, and unappealing to the drinker. This means that you’ll be pouring up to 40% of your beer down the drain because the pints come out too foamy, and even worse is that nobody will buy your draft beer and your poor reputation will spread throughout the community.
Another important thing when trying to make more money off of your beer sales is to price things with the proper margins. Charging the right amount for each type of beer you have in stock is crucial to making profits while at the same time keeping your customers coming back for more. You can offer your draft beer at lower prices than your bottled beer and still have higher margins because the initial cost is so much cheaper. Overall, you should try to price your draft beer to have a profit margin of around 80% and your bottled beer for a profit margin of around 75% to make everything shake out in your favor at the end of the day.
The Right Selection
Lastly, one of the worst things you can do is to have a poor choice of beer selections available for purchase. This is a double-edged sword because you want to have enough variety to bring in the masses but you want to avoid beer going stale and being thrown in the trash. To accomplish this, you need to rely on your sales data. If there’s a beer that isn’t selling well, switch it out for something new or remove it from the menu all together. Your beer distributor should be helpful in this arena as well because they obviously have a vested interest in your bar selling more beer. By balancing quality, pricing, and the right selection, maximizing your beer profits can quickly become a simple science.