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How Barley Swine booked $50k in sales during Valentine’s Day week using Tock

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By Tock Staff

Tock’s easy-to-use booking page, flexible features, and prepayment option helped boost revenue for this farm-to-table tasting menu restaurant.

Barley Swine is an 80-seat restaurant in Austin, Texas that specializes in locally sourced tasting menus, often featuring produce grown on James Beard-nominated chef-owner Bryce Gilmore’s farm. Gilmore’s team was already using Tock to provide a more personalized booking process for guests, with seats at the bar, dining room, patio, and chef’s counter offered as distinct experiences. The restaurant has also taken advantage of Tock’s flexibility and customizable features to offer higher-end, limited tasting menus for special occasions and holidays. Here’s how Barley Swine leveraged Tock to earn nearly $50k in revenue with a special menu offered on and around Valentine’s Day. 

Challenge

Grow revenue with a flexible, extended holiday experience when a big holiday falls on a weekday.

Tock Solution

Customize a Valentine’s Day experience that can be offered before, on, and after the holiday.

“Holidays have big revenue potential for us. You want to take advantage of the time when people are going out and willing to spend a little more for a higher-level experience,” says Gilmore. But February 14th often falls on a  weekday when the restaurant is usually closed, and guests may be less able to celebrate with dinner out. To give guests more flexibility and boost holiday bookings, he offers that holiday experience on the weekends before and after Valentine’s Day.

That way, Barley Swine can earn additional revenue beyond a single night of sales while catering to guests who want to dine on the holiday proper and those who prefer weekends. “Tock allows you to offer whatever you want, whatever day you want—something special that’s not part of your normal week,” he says.

Results

  • More bookings: A expanded holiday schedule provides more flexibility for guests to book at night out, while allowing more guests to enjoy the experience, boosting ROI.
  • Refined offering: Multiple nights allows time to tweak the menu and the service, improving the guest experience.

Challenge

Eliminate losses from no-shows and cancellations.

Tock Solution

Take prepayment in full for Valentine’s Day experiences to lock in revenue and give management peace of mind. 

Barley Swine takes a partial deposit for their usual tasting menu, but holiday experiences are a different story. “If it’s a special experience where we know we can book fully, we take all the funds up front to guarantee that revenue,” Gilmore says. “If people don’t show up for their reservation, we’ve lost hundreds of dollars and the opportunity for someone else to book.” 

The flexibility to take deposits or full prepayments helps meet guests where they are while protecting the restaurant’s bottom line, Gilmore notes, especially in a smaller market like Austin. “We don’t normally charge the full amount because it is quite a bit for someone to put up front,” he says. “For Valentine’s Day or New Year’s Eve, people don’t seem to have a problem paying in full when booking. We have the option to do it if we want to.”

Results

  • Higher revenue: Prepayments for special occasions eliminate losses due to cancellations and no-shows. 
  • Flexible experiences: Management has the option to take full prepayment or a partial deposit as needed. Guests love it to as they can enjoy the experience without ever taking out their wallet.

Challenge

Satisfy guests with a clear, easy-to-use booking experience. 

Tock Solution

Market holiday experiences on Tock’s user-friendly platform alongside everyday offerings. 

Gilmore knows the importance of a smooth, easy-to-use booking interface for guests, whether an experience is offered year-round or for special occasions. “It’s always going to come down to making it convenient and easy for the guest to figure out,” he says. “You want to make sure they have all the information, it’s easy to read, and they know what buttons to push.” 

With Tock, Barley Swine can offer its Valentine’s Day experiences well in advance of the holiday, letting guests make plans and driving bookings for the restaurant. The platform’s streamlined guest interface and user-friendly booking page ensures that Tock customers can make special experiences stand out from ongoing offerings. 

Results

More bookings, more satisfied guests: An easy-to-use booking interface creates a better experience for guests.

Get started with Tock today.

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