Is Your Restaurant in Need of a Happy Hour?

Posted on: 23 July 2021

Happy hour is a marketing technique used by many restaurants and bars to bring in more patrons and liven up the establishment for better sales and a pleasant atmosphere. Happy hour marketing efforts have been around since the mid-19th century, and the end goal is the same: to bring quality food and drink to patrons at a great price.

Not every restaurant or bar offers this feature, but happy hour is branching out beyond classic bars and sit-down eateries; fast food establishments often pick up their own versions of happy hour to bring in a greater amount of customers during their slow hours. Is your restaurant in need of a happy hour? And if so, how should you go about it? If a happy hour special will benefit your restaurant, you'll find out here.

Do you have a lull in business?

Do you consistently have a certain time of day or a slow week where you could use more patrons? If so, happy hour could be the rescue your restaurant is looking for. Choose a happy hour time and try it out every other week or once a week to see what type of crowd you attract, then add more dates to the event and change up the menu of happy hour offerings as you see fit.

Remember: happy hour can be for as long as you'd like. In many cases, it's more beneficial to patrons and businesses alike to have a happy hour event last for more than a single hour, but not exceed more than a few, and time your happy hour appropriately. You'll likely change your happy hour times around a bit until you gain momentum.

Do you have ignored menu items?

Do you have a surplus of a single menu item that patrons don't order as often as other offerings? Is there a specific beverage that you can create and store cheaply that you'd like to promote as a happy hour offering? Happy hour is a great time to push less-popular entrees, drinks, and appetizers at a discount for patrons to get your inventory moving. You can rotate your happy hour offerings or — to make things easier — have your happy hour feature the same offerings consistently so you can prep your inventory appropriately.

Happy hour can be a great addition to your restaurant and can really help draw in patron interest. Play around with your happy hour special until you're getting the results you want.

If you're planning on adding a happy hour to your restaurant, visit a restaurant's website like Down the Hatch Maui to see how other restaurants do their happy hour.