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Buying a Bar? Read These 5 Tips to Ensure Success

Millennial small business owner calculating finance bills of activity. Female entrepreneur using digital tablet to pay invoice and taxes and to calculate financial expenses of new bar restaurant

Buying a bar is an idyllic dream for many. There is a romance in the images we conjure when thinking of spending our time surrounded by interesting characters and friends throughout our working hours.

The reality, however, can be quite different. This is a job that will require long hours and commitment to working when others are off. You will also need to keep up with trends and stand out from the competition as your customers can be fickle about the watering hole they choose.

These are all factors that you will need to consider when you decide to buy a bar. Think carefully about the location, the competition, the current customers and your skills. For detailed descriptions about these important areas of consideration and more, read on! We have 9 tips to make sure your endeavour is a success.

1. Make sure you’re a natural bar owner

Although you will most likely be hiring staff to help you run your business, you will still need to have the skills that this business requires. You will have to be very hands on, especially in the early days, while you build your business.

Most importantly, you will need to be a people person that enjoys interacting with your customers. You are more likely to drawn in customers if they feel welcome. While you may have thought about owning a bar so that your work is social and fun, your focus must be on keeping your customers happy rather than yourself.

2. Define your audience

Who is it that you want to attract to your bar? Rather than try to appeal to everyone, you will need to identify your target market and focus on making your bar a place where they will want to come to.

This consideration should play a role in helping you decide on which bar you are going to buy. Does the bar that you are going to buy fit the vision you have? Will you be able to build on what is there already or will you have to completely start from scratch?

Keep in mind that the more changes and alterations you have to do to get the bar looking like you want, the more money and marketing work you will have to put into it. Buying a bar that is in line with your vision will allow you to hit the ground running.

3. Choose the location carefully

Of course, you can create a bar so popular that you draw people to it no matter the location. However, being in a location where there is passing foot traffic will make it a lot easier to bring in customers.

Your location will also influence how many businesses you have to compete with and how easy it is for people to get to your bar. Before deciding on a spot, do your market research and know where your customers will be easily enticed to go.

4. Market your bar

With the choice that customers have, it is more important than ever for you to get your marketing right. If you have defined your audience well, you should be able to target them with your marketing.

You need to do it properly if you are going to stand out, though. Your social media accounts need to have professional looking content and you need to have a well thought out strategy.

Consider hiring professional support if this is an area in which you are not confident. Your marketing can make or break your new business.

5. Have a List and Check it Twice

Do a thorough due diligence of any bars you are thinking of buying and asses their current marketing efforts. If they don’t have any or it is all but non-existent, you may be able to negotiate the price for the business down. However, it will mean that you will need to create a great marketing strategy from scratch.

Author: Bruce Hakutizwi, Director of North America for BusinessesForSale.com, the world’s largest online marketplace for buying and selling small and medium size businesses.

Published: February 28, 2020
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