Is Self-Pour Right for You?
Adding a self-pour beverage system to your operations may be just what your business needs to take sales and customer satisfaction to the next level! With 500+ PourMyBeer family members located worldwide, the self-pour revolution is spreading, and for a good reason! As many operators struggle to meet the new staffing challenges created due to the pandemic, several have had to rethink their operations to increase efficiency while decreasing labor costs. That’s where self-serve technology comes into play.
With our various products and features, we can work with venues of all types and sizes to bring the power of self-pour efficiency to you! Throughout this post, we will dive into everything PourMyBeer. From how our company got started and how the technology to the different products and setups we offer, we cover it all. We even sit down with two experienced PourMyBeer operators to hear their take on the system, so you can learn all there is to know about our self-serve beverage technology.
We recently hosted a webinar and sat down with two PourMyBeer team members: Ed Lazaruk, VP of Sales, and Laurel Thomas, South and Central Territory Director, to discuss how you can increase efficiency and profitability with self-pour technology. If you’re more of a visual learner, you can download the recording of the webinar below!
Fill out the form below to access the recording of this webinar!
PourMyBeer is a self-pour beverage system that enables faster and more efficient access to beverages by allowing customers to pour their own drinks while charging by the ounce. With over 12,000 taps in service across 30 countries, PourMyBeer is the leading self-pour provider on the market. We can customize our self-serve beverage technology to fit into any space, meaning no matter what type of establishment you have, self-pour is a welcomed addition! With 500+ PourMyBeer family members, we service various locations from traditional bars and restaurants to hotels, casinos, grocery stores, movie theaters, and even trucks!
Check out some of our customer’s locations below!
It all started in March of 2010 when Josh Goodman, Founder and CEO of PourMyBeer, met up with friends at a packed bar in Baltimore to grab some drinks before an Orioles game. After struggling to get the bartender’s attention, Josh’s friends began complaining about how terrible the service was.
While many customers left the bar due to the wait, Josh realized this was a problem that needed fixing. It wasn’t just a bad experience for him and his friends; the bar owner lost revenue because of how inefficient the process was. This was a big idea, so he left the bar and went home to create a business plan for self-pour drinks.
Over the next few years, Josh experienced many trials and tribulations when bringing his idea to reality. It wasn’t until March of 2015, when Josh approached an Austrian company to build a custom solution, that PourMyBeer took off. By May 2015, 50 PourMyBeer screens were shipped to the US. The rest is history!
Hear from Josh Goodman below to learn more about how the company got started and how the self-pour process works!
What Can You Dispense From Self-Pour Taps?
While our name may suggest that our technology only pours beer, that is not the case! The simple rule goes: if it’s a liquid, we can pour it! PourMyBeer is liquid-agnostic, meaning any liquid you can keg, our technology can pour. The commonly dispensed beverages through self-pour taps include wine, beer, cocktails, sodas, kombuchas, seltzers, and even cold brew coffee.
Serving kegged drinks provides many benefits for restaurant and bar owners, including:
- Cost Reduction – No more heavy, inconsistent pours. Ingredients for each cocktail will cost you the same amount every time.
- Reduced Beverage Waste – You can mix an entire batch at once, which leads to reduced labor costs.
- Consistency – Tapped beverages deliver consistent taste, unlike drinks mixed individually by different bartenders.
- Simplified Inventory – Say goodbye to the days of dealing with hundreds of bottles. Keep track of a few kegs at a time and minimal bottles of liquor.
To learn more about the different types of drinks that you can serve on draft, click the button below!
How Does It Work?
Self-Pour Process for Customers
Guests love the self-pour beverage experience! They no longer have to wait in long lines at the bar, and they can taste every beverage at the wall. So how does it work? The self-pour process is simple! So simple that customers can go from door to pour in under 30 seconds. Here’s how it works:
- Customers present their ID and credit card to receive an RFID card.
- The customer walks over to the self-pour setup and inserts their RFID card into the reader.
- The customer selects their drink of choice from the touch screen interface.
- The customer begins pouring as much or as little as they would like!
- The customer can enjoy and repeat as needed!
Self-Pour Process for Operators
As hospitality operators struggle to find and maintain employees during the nationwide staffing shortage, they are turning towards automated solutions to overcome these challenges. Self-pour technology is the perfect addition to any establishment as operators can reduce the amount of labor needed, ultimately decreasing labor costs by 20%.
Not only does self-pour technology save operators on labor costs, but also beverage waste! A traditional bar has an average of 23% beverage waste, while self-pour has less than 3%. All of our PourMyBeer family members that have switched from a traditional bar to a self-pour beverage wall have seen an average increase of 40% in beverage sales. This is possible because customers no longer need to wait in line to get drinks, and they can sample as many beverages as they’d like!
To learn more about the benefits of adding a self-pour beverage system to your operations, watch the video below to hear from Jerry Mazurowski, the Director of Operations at Neo Pizza.
Back-End Reporting System
Our BKG reporting system allows operators to gain insights into the back-end of their self-pour system. Operators can see insights like consumption patterns and pour data, when a keg is about to kick, how much of each product you’ve sold, and much more!
It offers everything you need to know about the consumption of each product on your beverage wall. The in-depth information provided by our reporting system increases efficiencies, beverage sales, and profits.
Monitoring Guest Alcohol Consumption
To comply with state liquor laws, the PourMyBeer system has to limit guests to two servings at a time, which prompts the guest to interact with a staff member to reauthorize their pour card. This allows the staff member to ensure that the guest is okay to continue drinking. If they are, the staff member can reactivate them for another two beverages.
The PourMyBeer system is the only system that is programmed to limit guests by serving rather than by ounces. For example, if you have a low ABV beer on one tap, you can set the beverage size to 16 ounces, and if you have wine on another tap, you can set the beverage size to 6 ounces. Our system will fractionally calculate when the guest pours two official liquor board servings to trigger the responsibility limit. After your guests hit the responsibility limit, they’ll see a message on the screen that prompts them to find a staff member.
You can customize the message on the screen to whatever you want it to say! This feature allows you to have fun with your guests and add funny messages. You can get as creative with it as you’d like!
The Benefits of Self-Pour Beverage Technology
During our recent webinar, we spoke with two experienced hospitality operators using self-pour technology in their operations located in Colorado. Below, we will introduce you to each speaker and their venues before we dive into a little question-and-answer section with these self-pour operators!
Co-Owner of The Golden Mill
Susan is a co-owner of The Golden Mill and works closely with the management team to run the successful operations of a large-scale food hall and community gathering place. Through her extensive relationships and presence in the Golden, Colorado community, she has worked to establish The Golden Mill as an integral fabric of the local community with her team by creating and hosting community events at the Golden Mill. Susan additionally oversees all of the marketing and public relations for The Golden Mill.
In 2018, The Golden Mill Feed Store was for sale, and some local Golden friends and neighbors got together and put in an offer with the desire to save the landmark and with the thought – “we could do something for the Golden community.” The site was the perfect place to create a social gathering place. The newly reimagined Golden Mill brings new life to the community gathering place tradition. Golden Mill is now a spot for locals and visitors alike to enjoy live music, events, and pop-up markets while enjoying food from five local food concepts and beverages from a self-pour wall that boasts over 50-taps of home-grown brews, wines, and house-made cocktails.
Director of Operations at Stanley Beer Hall, Operations & Technology Consultant at Malcolm Yards
Jim has been in the Food and Beverage industry for 25 years. In that time, he has done everything from the ground up – including washing dishes, serving, bartending, every level of management, and ultimately ownership. Jim is part of the operations at 4 self-pour establishments, including Stanley Beer Hall and Malcolm Yards. He is currently in the development stages of 4 more locations. Jim also supports and advises several other PourMyBeer locations.
Located in an old airplane hanger, Stanley Beer Hall provides a unique atmosphere for its guests. Not only is their location unique, but their 51-tap self-pour beverage wall provides guests with an experience like no other! Guests love the self-pour experience so much that Stanley Beer Hall’s kegged margarita made $250,000 in one year (and that’s just from one tap)! Their family-friendly environment welcomes guests of all ages, which is part of their success.
Now, let’s ask Jim and Susan some questions regarding their experiences with PourMyBeer and their self-pour beverage systems!
What Benefits Do Operators See While Utilizing Self-Pour Technology?
Efficiency is the main benefit. The technology is so easy to implement and has a great novelty factor. It markets itself. People love coming to The Golden Mill and bringing their friends. Our self-pour technology creates a sense of community because you have guests who have been here before, and they’re ready to help out those self-pour first-timers at the wall, which creates conversation and increases the overall guest experience.
The other benefit is the environmental factor. We’re not wasting wine or beer bottles, and our cocktails come in kegs. That is important to us at The Golden Mill (and our consumers), so we appreciate that.
In addition to being environmentally conscious, one of the benefits for operators is that you no longer have corked wine. With kegged wine, you can get more liquid out of the keg, so nothing gets spoiled, and products aren’t wasted. Since you’re able to get almost everything out of the keg and people are paying for tasters (no bartenders giving away free samples), we see almost 90% of the beer we purchase out of each keg get poured and paid for. The national average is around 78%, so just that 12% gain is bottom line money.
How Has Self-Pour Helped You Overcome the Staffing Crisis?
Staffing is challenging right now, and it’s an issue many people face in the industry. At Malcolm Yards in Minneapolis, MN, we have a traditional bar and a self-pour wall. The traditional bar takes 4 people to staff, while the self-pour setup takes 1, and 60% of the sales come from the self-pour wall. One of the other things that’s great about self-pour is that instead of hiring skilled bartenders, you’re hiring for personality and looking for people who can interact with guests. Not having to hire mixologists to run your entire bar is great.
To learn more about Malcolm Yards’ traditional bar vs. self-pour wall, check out the case study below!
Our employees have fun here. They enjoy it. They love the technology and love sharing that with the customers! Our employees also love talking about the new beers on tap at The Golden Mill to their friends, which in turn spreads the word about our company. We’ve hired many friends of friends, and we still have quite a few of our original employees here. It’s been great to see those relationships develop. We also have many locals visit their favorite beer wall ambassadors, just like they would with their favorite bartender.
How Has Our Technology Helped You Increase Beverage Sales?
Since customers only get charged by the ounce, we find that people are constantly sampling at the wall. Many customers try a little bit of one beverage and a little bit of another. Our beer wall ambassadors encourage sampling when customers approach the wall. We can capture every ounce poured and charge for that because bartenders aren’t giving away free samples.
Self-pour markets itself, so it brings in more people. It’s amazing to see how many customers bring their friends in, which increases sales. Also, even if customers aren’t drinking more than they would at a traditional bar, they’re happier because they can get their drinks faster. We find that the beer lovers come in for specific beers (especially if they follow us on Untappd), and then they’ll taste their way down the wall. All of the appeal adds to the revenue line.
What are the Benefits of Self-Pour Technology vs. a Traditional Bar?
At Malcolm Yards, we have 4 bartenders working at the traditional bar to do 40% of sales and 1 person working at the self-pour wall to do 60% of sales. Since we opened in July 2021, Malcolm Yards has made 523,000 cocktails. 138,000 of those cocktails were made by the 4 bartenders behind the bar, and 384,000 were made by 1 person from the self-pour wall. Malcolm Yards has poured 2.6 billion ounces with one person standing at the wall since opening last year. Here at The Golden Mill, they had 18,554 pours from the wall, and 146,000 ounces were poured in one week. Those numbers aren’t possible at a traditional bar.
Our restaurant can fit about 600 people, and in the summer, we reach capacity all the time. Customers don’t have to wait in lines at crowded bars; they can just approach the wall and start pouring. Customers can also grab their drinks before getting their food, which is great because no one wants to receive their food before their drinks. We check customers in, and within 10 seconds, they’ll have a drink in their hands.
What is Your Favorite Feature of the System?
My favorite feature on the tablets is the ability to reset the kegs. It is quick and easy to do from the beer wall, so you don’t have to run back to the cooler. I love how the screens are laid out intuitively, so there isn’t a lot of training required.
We love that our tablets are a marketing tool. If it’s a holiday, sports game, or if we’re hosting events, we can program the screens to have a background message to remind our customers about those events.
The Ins & Outs of the System
What Different Setups & Products Do We Offer?
After receiving an investment from Coca-Cola Europacific Partners in September 2020, we created our sister company PourMyBeverage. We know that every establishment is unique and different, so we wanted to allow our customers to choose the product best suited to their needs. Therefore, we developed 3 unique dispense solutions under PourMyBeverage:
- PourMyBeer (self-pour beverage system)
- PourMySoda (self-pour non-alcoholic beverage system)
- PourMyCocktail (staff-operated cocktail dispensing system)
Below, we’ll dive into each brand, so you can learn which one is best suited for your needs!
PourMyCocktail enables servers to get drinks into customers’ hands in less than 10 seconds, with no bartender needed! Our patented cocktail machine makes the same cocktail 1,000 times in under 10 seconds, ensuring the first tastes the same as the last. Not to mention, PourMyCocktail provides operators with a sustainable way to serve cocktails as bars and restaurants can now reduce their needs for liquor bottles and mixers!
- Increase speed of service by 5x or higher – makes a drink in seconds flat.
- Decrease labor needs by 40% or more – no bartenders needed.
- Eliminate product waste to below 1% – no heavy pours or giveaways.
- Get a 100% yield on all your cocktails and spirits.
We developed this product in partnership with Coca-Cola Europacific Partners after they invested in Innovative Tap Solutions, dba PourMyBeverage, in 2020. PourMySoda allows customers to pay for their soft drinks with their credit card or phone payments to pour their choice of soft drinks without needing any staff.
- Increase Profits
- Decrease Labor
- Increase Service Efficiency
- Reduce Waste
- Eliminate Unnecessary Packaging
Now let’s discuss PourMyBeer! There are several reasons why we created this revolutionary technology. For patrons, the goal was to eliminate waiting in lines, give them the ability to pour anything by the ounce, and truly enjoy the freedom to sample whichever drink their hearts desire without asking the bartender for free samples.
At the beginning of 2022, we launched our new product in partnership with Micro Matic under PourMyBeer called the “Self-Pour Station.” This kegerator-based system is the perfect addition to any space looking to add an additional revenue stream. It is a compact and easy-to-move system that can serve everything from beer, wine, and cocktails, to soda, kombucha, and more!
We currently offer the system in three sizes, which you can see below!
4 Taps/2 Screens
6 Taps/3 Screens
8 Taps/4 Screens
Our self-pour stations are the perfect addition to any establishment looking to add beverage service to their operations without construction. If you have any questions, contact our sales team at email@example.com!
Fixed Wall Set Ups
Short on wall space? No problem! With our fixed wall setups, you can have as many as 4 taps per screen, saving on wall space and enabling the grouping of beverages by screen!
Check out our tap wall setups below!
1 Tap Per Screen
2 Taps Per Screen
3 Taps Per Screen
4 Taps Per Screen
How Long Does it Take to Install the System?
Installing a self-pour system takes around 10-12 weeks, from when you place your deposit to the time of installation. Once your installation date is set, we will send one of our technicians to your location to begin the installation. The installation of the tap wall takes about one to two days to install our equipment, depending on the number of taps. Some of our smaller projects with less than 10 taps have taken less than a day to complete and some of our bigger ones with 100 taps have taken 2-3 days to install. It depends on the number of taps you choose to have on your tap wall.
What are the Integration Capabilities?
PourMyBeer’s self-pour technology is the only provider on the market designed with an open API system. This freedom allows customers to choose the Point of Sale system that best suits their needs and saves operators the hassle and costs of switching from a previous system! We currently integrate with 6 point of sale systems and 1 other system known as Untappd.
Untappd is a beer lover’s social media app and beer database. Through the PourMyBeer and Untappd integration, operators can sync the beverages on their self-pour wall to their Untappd profile, which will pull in all the logos, tasting notes, ABV levels, and more right to the screens! This provides an efficient and easy way for customers to learn about the different beverages offered on your wall while creating an easy way for you to sync your beverages to the screens.
Why Choose US?
We pride ourselves on being the most reliable and well-engineered system on the market. Our industrial-grade, purpose-built screens were designed specifically for the hospitality industry. Don’t just take our word for it! We are the only self-pour provider on the market that has never been replaced by another provider. Rather, we have replaced 20+ systems of other providers’ systems. If you’d like to speak with someone from our team about our self-pour technology, click the button below to request a free quote today!