It’s time to start preparing for those long summer nights out on your restaurant’s patio. What creative ways will you draw patrons? What will you serve, and will you be able to keep with the demand of refreshing cocktails?

patio outdoor restaurant

Let your point-of-sale (POS) system help answer all these questions, and create a great summer experience for your guests.

First, you’ll want to create an atmosphere that’s sure to bring a relaxing vibe. Whether you put tea-lights or flower vases on the tables, you’ll want to leave an impression. Make your customer feel like a VIP when their server brings a mobile POS to the table. Your customer’s order will go straight to the kitchen and bar as they decide.

Plus, bring them a free desert after you collect their email for your loyalty program. Now you’re keeping track of everything they purchase in order to best serve them with your upcoming promotions. They’re sure to come back with this type of customized service.

Second, you’ll want to think about your stock. What new menu items will you be adding? What will you need? Currently, what is selling well? With access to a total sales summary showing all payments and transactions as well as a breakdown of sales by the hour, your POS software can always tell you what you’ve got, and what you need. Then when those summer nights roll in, you can track all products sold during a specific time period, and have total access to details on all orders you’ve placed and received.

Next, let your POS software show you when your peak service times are. That way you can staff the right folks and speed up the serving process. Having dedicated outdoor staff on busy nights is a good idea. As you schedule and assign your staff, make sure you have the right number of ordering stations/mobile POS devices.

Lastly, you might want to consider installing a receipt printer for the patio that is connected to your POS. It will allow staff to move customers along more efficiently at the end of the meal — it’s the easiest way to give customers their bills quickly, and turn tables.

By preparing for the summer months with your POS system, you’ll set yourself apart from all the other patio restaurants. Plus, you’ll create a memorable experience for your guests that will keep them coming back again and again.